Wednesday, November 22, 2023

CODA will no doubt sing its way into your heart

The whole time I was watching CODA, I was trying to figure out what the title meant. Since the story is largely about music, I figured that could be it. Or that it was the end of the way of life the family in the film knew or that possibly there was a death coming soon in the story.

I wasn’t right about any of that. CODA stands for Child of Deaf Adults, and that’s exactly what it’s about, as the Apple award-winning film is all about the coming-of-age of a girl in a small Massachusetts fishing community whose mom, dad, and brother are all deaf and rely heavily on her to help them translate and navigate life.

Emilia Jones plays the girl, Ruby Rossi, and she, like the entire cast, is phenomenal, having learned American Sign Language for the part.

Eugenio Derbez plays her music teacher at high school and discovers Ruby has a talent for much more than fishing and translating. She has a great singing voice and he works to hopefully get her into Berklee’s music school.

Marlee Matlin plays Ruby’s mom and can’t understand why she would want to be a singer when the rest of the family can’t hear it. 

But along with Jones, it is Troy Kotsur as the goofy and loving dad who adds the comic relief to what is actually kind of a sad, but still uplifting, story. He won the Academy Award for best actor and the movie itself won Best Picture.

I can’t believe it took me a couple of years to get around to watching CODA. It might just be the best thing on Apple. 

5 out of 5 stars

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