Weekend Warm-Up: Wingsuiting the Dolomites is Surprisingly Chill

I’m the kind of person who describes cabin-building videos as “meditative.” Wingsuit vids? Not so much. The latter always gets my blood pumping, but not in a good way. There’s something about the intensity of the sport, combined with its heinous death toll, that just doesn’t appeal.

All that changed after watching Line of Sight, which I can best describe as “a wingsuit video for people who don’t like wingsuit videos.” A 30-minute watch set deep in the heart of the Dolomites, the film manages to make one of the world’s most dangerous pastimes feel breezy and carefree.

a man wingsuits off a high cliff

Yikes. Photo: Screenshot


Partly it’s the relaxed attitude the video’s three stars, Marshal Miller, Jesse Hall, and Sean Chuma, bring to the proceedings.

“The jumping gets you here, but the other 99 percent is chilling in these amazing places. Hiking in these mountains, seeing these views, eating the food, seeing some of the culture. I love that stuff. That’s what I love about BASE jumping,” Jessie Hall says in the film’s opening scenes, between shots of pizza eating and sightseeing.

Chill to intense

But it’s amazing to watch the transformation as the trio stand on a ledge and gaze out over the Italian valleys hundreds of meters below them. With a few deep breaths, the group visibly focuses on the tasks at hand. The change in energy is palpable. And then off they go, leaping into the void. Relying on nothing but physics, materials science, and experience to get them to the ground safely.

a split screen image of a man wingsuiting

The camera work here is top-notch. Photo: Screenshot


Every now and then, the trio punctuates wingsuit jumps with more typical BASE jumps. Miller, Hall, and Chuma treat these jumps as stress relievers from the more focus-intensive wingsuit jumps. It says something about the power of suggestion (not to mention nuanced changes in tone, courtesy of the film’s editors) that the viewer starts to feel the same way.

two men jumping off a cliff in wingsuits

An epic launch. Photo: Screenshot


The editing and music are a big win overall in this piece. And the camera work is incredible, using as it does occasional split-screen techniques to provide scope and intimacy at the same time. But the real win is the feature I noted at the top: a vibe that digs a little deeper than the pulse-pounding, death-defying norm most commonly associated with the sport.

Enjoy! Maybe with a glass of red wine and a slice of pizza. It’s that kind of watch.

Andrew Marshall

Andrew Marshall is an award-winning painter, photographer, and freelance writer. Andrew’s essays, illustrations, photographs, and poems can be found scattered across the web and in a variety of extremely low-paying literary journals.
You can find more of his work at www.andrewmarshallimages.com, @andrewmarshallimages on Instagram and Facebook, and @pawn_andrew on Twitter (for as long as that lasts).