Rashid N.’s review published on Letterboxd:
I'm so far behind on my reviewing schedule so if you see me logging a bunch of films instead of reviewing them then it's because I'm trying to catch up. I really want to discuss them but getting back on track is more important. So...Sound of Metal...bro no one warned me that it was a horror movie 😳.
Darius Marder's debut is a striking and moving love letter to his grandmother and the deaf community. Tackling the subject of deafness, I never expected this film to be this simultaneously heartbreaking and heartwarming. It's goals of bringing attention to the deaf community while also hopefully giving catharsis to those very people are beautiful and for a debut, Sound of Metal is a very impressive film that is certainly worthy of the praise it has received. To be honest, I thought nothing would be able to beat Lee Isaac Chung's debut, Minari as my favourite of 2020 yet Marder managed to do it with his own debut. A lot of amazing debuts came out last year.
Probably most impressive of all is Riz Ahmed's performance. For his role, he learned how to play the drums and how to speak in American Sign Language. And with his added efforts, he gave easily my favourite performances of the year. Olivia Cooke also did a wonderful job. Honestly, everyone did perfect jobs at portraying their characters.
And then there's the sound design; according to Letterboxd, three people worked on the sound for Sound of Metal and damn did they do greatly at their tasks. The sound design plus Riz Ahmed's performance left me in horror for the first half of this film. My jaw was just hanging open there in shock and I couldn't close it. That only goes to show the power of this fantastic film.
Things get a little too slow around the end but that's really just a nitpick. Since it's easily accessible (it's on Amazon), I'd say that you all have to check out Sound of Metal. If Riz Ahmed doesn't win Best Actor then imma riot (unless Chadwick Boseman, Steven Yeun, or Mads Mikkelsen wins; then it's fine but I'll still be a little salty about it) and if this film doesn't win Best Sound Design then...idk lol. I'll be extremely disappointed I guess yet you can never expect too much from the Oscars. So excited to see where Marder goes next.