Brendan Perry’s review published on Letterboxd:
This one is a mind melter.
To be put in the shoes of someone who’s whole life gets changed. Like the whole rug being pulled out from under them.
There are some seriously surprising performances from Riz Ahmed. Who plays Ruben, a sober Metal band drummer who suddenly loses his hearing completely, and must change his entirely life in order to live being deaf.
My favorite character was Joe played by Paul Raci. I’ve never seen this guy before, and out of nowhere he comes out with one of my favorite performances of the year. He plays a deaf sober living home sponsor who guides Ruben through his sobriety and deafness.
Like Blue Valentine and I Know This Much Is True...Sound of Metal has a dramatic rawness that most modern dramas fail to earn.
There is something so beautiful and poetic about how Ruben must sell his entire life away to chase a crumb of what he had before.
He sells his tour bus, all of his music gear, and every procession that he had so that he could get ear implants but into his brain.
Once he gets them, he asks Joe if he could stay while he waits for his implants to be activated, and maybe barrow some money to buy back his your bus.
Joe tells him that he’s sounding like an addict, and as much as this hurts him...he must cast Ruben out for not being one of them. Someone who is organically deaf. Someone who doesn’t believe they have a handicap.
It’s not until Ruben gets his implants activated that he learns they aren’t as crystal clear as he thought they would be.
People and all noises sound glitchy and robotic.
Can you imagine? Selling your entire life for what turns out to be a rotten nightmare? What a mind fuck.
Check this one out!!