reibureibu’s review published on Letterboxd:
As a character study I absolutely loved this and found Ruben's struggle to deal with his sudden lifestyle-change extremely moving. There's few things scarier than having to adapt to unexpected circumstances, whether that be a medical issue, a lay-off, or an eviction notice, and such ordeals bring sudden clarity to the terrifying fact that the vast majority of us are not prepared to deal with such change. For Ruben, the primary obstacle is less the hearing loss than it is the means to bypass the hearing loss; if he had the funds for cochlear implant surgery or healthcare that could cover it, the film would lose much of its central conflict. However, he doesn't, and so an alternate lifestyle is proposed which would allow him to live a perfectly-functional life but asks him to give up the life he has known. There's no easy answer, for Ruben or for anyone else who finds themselves in a similar position, and the knowledge that simply having access to some of the resources that the wealthy hoard (something Ruben himself attempts to amend) would greatly-mitigate this strife is an extremely bitter pill to swallow. He does so anyways, because what else can he do?
As an ethical form of representation, I absolutely do not have the experience nor expertise to comment but ask that you please read Drew's ever-insightful perspective of how Sound of Metal is an exclusionary film to certain segments of the deaf community.