5 Recent Films To Watch That Discuss Deafness

The last few years have seen a number of new films where deafness has been a key element to the films identity. Films have the ability to help people put themselves in other peoples shoes, experience things and learn things from another persons perspective. When it comes to films that talk about being deaf or hard of hearing it is a delight to see film depict the challenges faced by people who are Deaf, the lack of deaf awareness in general society and the importance of communication. We look at five very different films from recent years that capture what it is like to be deaf in varying environments, decades and parts of the world.

The Silent Chld (2018)

The Silent Child is a British drama short film about a four year old girl called Libby who is profoundly deaf. Along with her parents she is preparing to go to school for the first time. Libby struggles to communicate until the presence of British Sign Language is brought into her life by her social worker. The Silent Child highlights the importance of language for communication and raising awareness for deaf children.

A Quiet Place (2018)

A Quiet Place is an American post-apocalyptic horror film about a family who have to navigate their whole life in silence from no talking to not producing any sound when you move. This is because of an alien race that have an extremely keen ear.  When we meet the family they have survived 89 days so far. This is partly to do with the family's deaf awareness and understanding of sign language. Their eldest daughter Regan is deaf and communicates using American Sign Language. Being able to communicate using ASL has given them an invaluable skill that has made it possible to survive.

Wonderstuck (2017)

Wonderstruck is an American Mystery Drama that tells the story of two people. A young girl named Rose who in 1927 runs away to New York to find her mother and a young boy Ben who loses his hearing during an accident and goes to New York in search of his father. Taking on a story line of finding long lost parents is a story commonly seen in childrens films however this is a film with deeper thoughts and emotions making this an adult storyline still suitable for children viewing . The film instead of highlighting deafness allows the viewer to understand the reality of being deaf at an early age as well as the social and society related stigma of deafness as a disability.

Power In Our Hands (2016)

Power in Our Hands is a documentary film that uses footage provided by the British Deaf Association that is able to tell the story of the heritage and history of the Deaf community in the UK. The film includes recent interviews and rare archived footage not seen before. The film had such a positive response that the film was aired at 140 cinemas across the UK instead of the target 10 initially predicted.

A Silent Voice (2017)

A Silent Voice is a Japanese Anime film about a school bully named Shoyo and a young girl named Shoko who is deaf. Shoko recently moves to a new school of which she is soon bullied by Shoyo a particularly popular kid at the school.  The film meets them again later on in their life where Shoyo is ashamed of his behaviour during his school years. The film portrays the struggles Shoyo faces. The film is powerfully and emotinally presented as well as visually beautiful.

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