Movie Short Review: ‘Coda’

Greetings again from the darkness. Alex is a young woman who can’t seem to find her way in life. She is a CODA: Child of Deaf Adults. She doesn’t belong to the deaf community, the hearing community, or her dance company. Alex views herself as an outsider in all aspects of life.

Kerrynton Jones stars as Alex. She finds herself under pressure in her dance troupe because her choreography is deemed too safe by the director. Utilizing her expert sign language skills (from a lifetime of communicating with her parents), Alex pretends to be deaf and strikes up a blossoming romance with Josh (Ryan Lane). Of course, her lie is soon exposed, and Alex begs Ryan to come to her dance performance so that he might better understand her predicament.

In 22 minutes, writer-director Erika Davis-Marsh does a nice job of helping us understand Alex’s emotions, and how she describes the difficulty of “living between 2 worlds.” Ryan has a fascinating line where he states that he usually can recognize hearing people by the different way they move when compared to the hearing-impaired. With CJ Jones (BABY DRIVER, 2017) and Antoinette Abbamonte as Alex’s parents, there are 3 deaf actors in key roles. Ms. Jones is a tremendous dancer, and by incorporating sign language into her dance routine, she manages to communicate to those most important in her life … making for a very inspiring story.

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