Movie of the Year: 2020
Sound of Metal
The Taste Buds discuss 2020’s Sound of Metal!
The Sound of Metal tells the story of a rock drummer, Ruben, who is losing his hearing and must learn to live with his new hearing loss while confronting all his old demons, chief among them an addiction to heroin, which, not to get political, but don’t do heroin, everybody. The film follows Ruben as he parts from girlfriend Lou and begins the hard work of rebuilding his life and learning how to sit with the silence he now finds himself in. The movie asks how do we deal with loss? And how do we deal with never getting back those things most precious to us?
Along the way the audience is transported by Riz Ahmed’s transcendent performance and rookie director Darius Marder’s ambitious sound design. Both of which deliver the audience an experience that is at once moving and powerful even as it embraces the still and, yes, finally, the quiet.
Calling a movie “an actor’s showcase” is often pejorative to the rest of the film. (A) is this movie an actor’s showcase for Riz Ahmed and (B) Is that totally okay if you want to tell an intimate story? We get into this and also tackle Riz and Lou’s relationship. We know relationships, so you don’t want to miss that.
At one point, Mike says, “More like unsound and mental!” Which, to me, seems borderline. I like to stay further back from the edge than Mike, though, so I respect him. He also yells out, “That’s Whiplash-style, baby!” And I think that is more the type of joke we aim to make around these parts. As sort of a weird joke I am going to indicate here that Ryan wins this one by the score of 20-19, but also I am going to further indicate that I would think it was funny to just make something like that up.
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