Briton Riz Ahmed, who recently (in Mogul Mowgli screened at the New Horizons IFF) played a rapper battling an illness, this time plays a drummer who is gradually losing his hearing. For Ruben, who is playing in a band with his girlfriend (Olivia Cooke), music is his entire life—it’s a messy life, but at least he’s finally sober. It’s not easy for him to accept his worsening situation—even when he ends up in an isolated community that is meant to prepare him for a completely new way of life. Darius Marder plays with sound in his feature-length debut. Screened at the festival in Toronto, the film was inspired by Derek Cianfrance’s reportedly scrapped project about the band Jucifer. With the help of hearing-impaired actors (including Lauren Ridloff, who recently joined the Marvel family) and sound engineers who have worked on some of Hollywood’s biggest productions, Marder proves that cinema is not always about seeing from the protagonist’s point of view—but, ultimately, about hearing exactly what they do.
Darius Marder is an American director, screenwriter, and editor based in New York. In 2008, he made a documentary called Loot about a man searching for buried treasure from World War II with the help of two veterans. He co-wrote the screenplay for The Place Beyond the Pines, starring Ryan Gosling and directed by Derek Cianfrance, with whom he also collaborated on his feature-length debut, Sound of Metal. Starring Riz Ahmed in the role of a drummer gradually losing his hearing, the film was screened at the festival in Toronto, among others.
2008 Loot (doc.)
2019 Sound of Metal