You know that feeling you get when a film strikes a nerve, one that is unforgettable. Very few films this year hit me as hard as the excellent new feature Sound of Metal. This fantastic story revolves around a drummer in a rock band is not only dealing with addiction, he’s also losing his hearing. While it may sound a bit movie of the week-ish, filmmaker Darius Marder has captured a stunning story that is moving, heartbreaking, and shockingly intense. The cast, including Riz Ahmed, is incredible, and the use of sound in the film is incredibly powerful. This is the type of story that many will relate to, and it will certainly stick with you well after your first viewing.
Recently, we spoke to some of the fine folks involved in this incredible flick. First up, it was Mr. Marder himself. Interestingly enough, I first became aware of Darius Marder after catching him on an episode of Impractical Jokers – if you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to be pranked by those fellas, Darius will tell you here. While we did discuss that, we quickly moved on to the business at hand. He opened up about the challenges of getting this feature made, as well as finding the right sound design that propels this to a work of art. Darius is an incredibly charming fellow, an exceptional writer, and just a good guy all around.
Next up we spoke with Olivia Cooke who talked about the types of music she performed in the film. It’s always enjoyable speaking to Ms. Cooke, and she and Riz share a very moving on-screen relationship. And speaking of relationships, Paul Raci is a very important part of this impressive tale of addiction and struggle. As well, the actor shares a very complex and intriguing connection with Ahmed. Much like his character, Mr. Raci in real life is a fascinating man who has used his own experience to reach out to the deaf community with his music. He’s a wonderful and kind human being, and it was terrific to chat with him.
And finally, we sat down with Riz Ahmed who delivers one of the best performances of the year. The actor discussed playing a man dealing with such a difficult and life-altering situation. Ahmed – as well as Marder – opened up about the unique way they created the sound, which is certainly a huge part of this particular tale. He also talked about learning to play the drums, learning to sign, and getting the emotional beats that he had to deal with preparing to play this challenging role. He delivers on all counts. Do yourself a favor, check out the incredible Sound of Metal which opens this weekend in select theatres and your favorite streaming service.