Sound of Metal (directed: Darius Marder) stars Riz Ahmed, Olivia Cooke, Paul Raci, Lauren Ridloff and Mathieu Amalric. First, thanks to the team for making this film and the “ray-of hope” in the last scene!.
I find it interesting to know what motivates someone towards a particular act – especially a creative act. Darius Marder on his twitter handle (@dariusmarder) mentions that the film is dedicated to his grandmother. I am not surprised since I believe that you can add a bit of excellence to a film like Sound of Metal only when you are personally motivated. I liked watching Sound of Metal because I could relate to some aspects of it myself.
Sound of Metal tells the story of a drummer Ruben (played exceptionally well by Riz Ahmed) who loses his hearing. How Ruben deals with this sudden occurrence in his life and how people around Ruben deal with Ruben and the situation is the story.
Sound of Metal is one of the most lauded films in recent times. The film is also earning multiple nominations in award ceremonies. Therefore, I may not have much to add by commenting on its brilliance. I can only mention why it appealed to me.
Over time I have realised that as humans we are resistant to “acceptance”. Acceptance is often seen as a sign of weakness and it destroys us. In my personal experience, I am continuously going through this emotion. Like many others, I find it hard to accept. However, to be honest, whenever I have positively accepted a scenario, I have realised I may have found a way to work around it. This is true for my own illnesses and or where I am a caregiver. This is true even for my career and hobbies.
Sound of Metal puts acceptance as being the core to its story. The entire film is about how Ruben is struggling to accept the circumstance. While it is indeed harsh for Ruben personally but in the community where Ruben lives headed by Joe (brilliantly played by Paul Raci), Ruben indeed makes a difference to various lives and is being acknowledged. Ruben struggles to accept that. His action is not unnatural but we got to develop a sense of acceptance eventually.
Longing for past
Ruben misses his life with his girlfriend Lou (played by Olivia Cooke). They met at a time when both needed each other and they influenced their lives positively. Again it is harsh what happens to the couple once Ruben’s circumstance changes, but however difficult it may be, Ruben had to learn (later through his own experience), that there is a time to move on. Ruben created well-wishers along the way and the future may be different but could be brighter. We all need to give a chance to the future. Again – for a person like me, who loves getting nostalgic, this is something that I need to learn.
Making peace and moving on
Finally, we cannot change some situations drastically. Our definition of normalcy is always challenged by unforeseen circumstances and sadly we have to make peace and move on. Ruben does that eventually in the film or so it seems. There is no doubt Ruben’s future will be drastically different from the past but then it could well be much better.
I am not sure whether Darius wanted to convey all these in this film but I took out some of the above from this film. I loved the ray of hope that the film ends with in the last scene and while in the entire film I felt sad for Ruben, the ray of hope gave me a sense of optimism. Personally, I am sure life is not hunky-dory for most of us but finding that ray of hope is the journey. It appeared Ruben finally went on that journey.
Please watch Sound of Metal on Amazon Prime