Sound of Metal
Riz Ahmed, Olivia Cooke, Paul Raci, Mathieu Amalric
Riz Ahmed is superb in Sound of Metal, the remarkably assured feature debut of American director, screenwriter and editor Darius Marder (co-writer of The Place Beyond the Pines) about a heavy metal drummer (Riz Ahmed) who after losing his hearing, is forced to re-evaluate his place in the world.
Ex-addict Ruben (Ahmed) is on tour with his girlfriend and band-mate Lou (Olivia Cooke), hammering out ferocious sets night after night. His hearing is already fading, but when it takes a sudden and devastating turn for the worse, his life is thrown into turmoil. If he can’t recover his hearing, who will he become? In a group home for Deaf addicts, Ruben must choose between his new Deaf community and fighting to hold on to what has always defined him.
Marder uses innovative sound design to creates a powerful soundscape of scrapes and muffles that give you a real sense of Ruben’s sonic experience and interior world; including his utter panic as he is jolted into a new, quieter way of being. Injecting visceral, edgy circumstances with great sensitivity, and strengthened by tough-minded performances from Ahmed and Cooke, Sound of Metal is a poignant portrait of a man finding his way to a new revelation.