Many of us have always wondered what it would be like to have a physically impaired condition. Most of us never question the idea that if we had a disability and an opportunity arose to cure our situation, we would take it.
However, if your situation centered around your entire life and family, would it be considered a handicap or one of the many subcultures in our diverse society?
The film Sound and Fury ponders this revelation to understand the family of Heather Artinian, a little girl born deaf, into a deaf family, but given the opportunity to change her physical situation with the implementation of a single device.
Focusing on Heather's immediate family, director Josh Aronson is able to depict a situation of both worlds.
Heather's father, Peter Artinian, stands firm in his belief that deafness is not a handicap but a mere difference in his family which creates a diverse subculture. He believes the cochlear implant Heather could receive will not only discriminate against her own heritage but make a mockery out of her to her hearing peers.
At this beginning point in the film, one tends to side with Heather and her preliminary decision due to Peter's constant insistence and mixed ideas.
However when Heather's grandparents are introduced to the story, the viewer might consider a different frame of mind. Both Peter's parents and brother were born with hearing capability, thus making it difficult for an only deaf child to cope with his situation.
The audience is further swayed by Peter's mother, who is constantly bickering and angry that Peter would even consider not having the operation.
The most amazing and entertaining ability of Sound and Fury is Aronson's ability to vary between both sides of the issue. The depiction of Heather in both a hearing classroom and deaf classroom leave the viewer questioning which decision would be right for the little girl.
Although the film is a documentary, it possesses ability to show such strong emotion and varied sides of issues. Each character's own contradiction against others and themself demonstrates a true life perspective on a subject that affects many.
The end of the film may leave many still undecided, as both issues are satisfied with separate family members.
However, one can still wonder: In today's fast-paced society, is it right to take away a child's opportunity to compete in a close-minded and discriminatory society?
Sound and Fury is now playing at the Regal Downtown West Cinema 8.
Film touches on issue of disability
Published: Fri Feb 16, 2001 | Modified: Sat Aug 06, 2005 03:28 p.m.