A documentary that is layered with emotion, it at times appears to be a therapeutic journey for Sharon, one that simultaneously allows Trisha to reflect on her transition and its impact on both her wife and her children. Trisha says when she came out publicly, it was very much a process that she went through without thinking about the impact it may have on her family, for her it was a matter of life or death. Throughout the documentary, we can see hints the pain this has caused her, at times itâ€™s evident that in fact Trisha is still holding back aspects of her identity to accommodate her family.
From This Day Forward is also the story of Trishaâ€™s relationship with her wife Marsha and the deep love that the couple share. Marsha, who has known about Trishaâ€™s identity from the very beginning of their relationship, identifies as straight and has stuck by Trisha throughout their most turbulent times. It is this relationship that has defined Trishaâ€™s coming out, she reveals that she desires to express her femininity more in-depth but her concern lies with her spouse.
With the story told from Sharonâ€™s perspective, much of the film is narrated by her and her presence is inescapable. Scattered throughout are small moments in which Trisha, who is an extremely talented artist, films on her own however she reminds us that Sharon has asked her to do so. Perhaps the most revealing aspects of Trishaâ€™s own contemplations come in the moments that focus on her stunning oil paintings that delve into the deepest depths of her identity and her imaginings of human experience.
Like all families, this one is far from perfect. Be prepared to watch the film and hear Sharon refer to Trisha using male pronouns and the word â€śfatherâ€ť, this in itself is an aspect of the documentary that is continuously teased apart, delving deep into the workings of this family dynamic.
Check out From This Day Forward at the Doc Edge Festival
Wellington 4-15 May, Roxy Cinema, Miramar
Auckland 18-29 May, Q Theatre Auckland CBD