CODA Explained: What’s Up With the Ending?

“CODA: the child of deaf parents” / CODA

Genre drama, comedy
Directed by Sian Heder
Cast: Emilia Jones (Ruby), Eugenio Derbez (Bernando), Ferdia Walsh-Pilo (Miles), Troy Kotzur (Frank), Marley Matlin (Jackie), Daniel Durand (Leo), John Fiore (Tony) and others.
Студии Vendome Pictures, Pathé Films, Picture Perfect Federation
Release year 2021
Site IMDb

The first screening of CODA: Child of Deaf Parents took place at Sundance. After the screening, Apple made the largest deal in the history of the film festival, taking away the rights to show an indie film (prior to this, the Palm Springs comedy, which Hulu bought for $22.5 million, received the largest amount).

Perhaps it will surprise someone that the film does not have a particularly original plot. It is entirely devoted to the themes of growing up, first love, separation from family and overcoming oneself. It would seem, well, how many similar stories have already been filmed, showing the American province, from which every second student dreams of leaving. However, Apple knowingly invested in the tape, seeing in it a very sincere story that looks in one breath. She can make laugh, sadden a little, but at the same time not drown the viewer in tears, showing him a small excerpt from the life of the characters – a deaf family in which a hearing child grows up.

Ruby (Emilia Jones) is a high school student who helps her parents and brother with the fishing business. Quite often, she becomes the voice of the family, translating from sign language and solving work problems. In such situations, Ruby is always lively and courageous, while at school she becomes a shy teenager who is laughed at because of her relatives. Having moved to the senior class, Ruby enrolls in the choir – this elective was chosen by a guy who she has liked for a long time, and the heroine herself loves to sing. Soon, the girl will have to make a choice between a hobby that can give an interesting future, and a family whose existence is completely dependent on Ruby.


CODA: Child of Deaf Parents is not like Glee, even though there are a few musical numbers in the film (they don’t turn the film into a musical). They are diluted with light jokes by the Mexican actor Eugenio Derbez, who plays a school singing teacher – at first glance, an arrogant and life-weary musician, but in fact a good mentor, pushing students to fulfill their dreams.

Just the same, a sincere desire for a dream becomes the main problem of the heroine, who from childhood is used to devoting her time to her relatives. Here it’s worth saying right away that the film never tries to provoke pity in the viewer, on the contrary, an atmosphere of love, freedom and laughter reigns in Ruby’s family. Her parents are liberated and are still in love with each other, which sometimes puts the heroine in awkward situations, and her older brother tries not to be different from other fishermen who gather in local bars. Sometimes it seems that only one thing is missing for greater family unity – that Ruby should also be deaf, about which the heroine once talks with her mother.

The tape also reveals how difficult it is for deaf parents to understand the hobbies of their child, who is not only inspired by music, but also becomes a good performer himself. There is a scene in the film in which Ruby’s family watches their daughter sing the song, however, they cannot share the emotions of other listeners (it is interesting that the creators of the drama leave this part without sound so that the viewer can understand how the characters feel at this moment ). And, what is very valuable, the film brings to the point how important it is to seek and find ways of mutual understanding, even if it seems something completely impossible.


CODA: Child of Deaf Parents was directed by Sian Heder, one of the writers on Orange Is the New Black. As it turns out, Heather took the idea for the film from the French comedy La famille Bélier and adapted it to life in the small fishing town of Gloucester, Massachusetts.

The role of Ruby was played by Emilia Jones, who starred in the fantasy series Locke & Key, where her character was rather faded. But in CODA: Child of Deaf Parents, the character of Emilia Jones is very accommodating, the actress conveys typical teenage problems well and at the same time bears the burden of adult responsibility on her shoulders.

It is worth noting that the other main roles were played by deaf actors: Troy Kotzur (played the father), Daniel Duran (brother of the main character) and Marley Matlin (ruby’s mother). By the way, Marlee Matlin is the only deaf actress to win an Oscar for Best Actress.

In a word, after viewing, it seems that director Sian Heder has assembled a successful cast and correctly directed it towards a touching, but not compassionate story. So the movie should be recommended to almost everyone who is ready to take the time for a soulful picture.

The only thing that confuses in the film is the speedy solution to long-standing problems, which happens in an instant so that the picture can end on a positive note. But since this is a comedy drama, then the creators can be forgiven for such a rush.

Pros: cast; hackneyed themes about growing up are shown touchingly and interestingly; relationship between a deaf family and a hearing child; lightness of the film Cons: instant solution to long-standing problems, which happens specifically for the finale Conclusion:

a heartfelt film that does not squeeze tears out of the viewer, but evokes pleasant emotions.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top