Hearing loss is often invisible. When someone is hearing impaired, and they cannot understand what another person is saying simply because they can’t hear speech like most people can, they are often seen as being mentally deficient.
Meanwhile, the brains of people with hearing loss are working overtime, to put the words together that they cannot hear, guessing at the consonants like a contestant on the show The Wheel of Fortune. Their brains also must add in the context of the conversation while trying to figure out the missing sounds, much like the contestants on that show use the title of the puzzle to suss out its meaning.
We Hear You, Now Hear Us is a documentary about hearing loss that explores the trials and tribulations of navigating a hearing world. The movie also explores the newfound difficulties of mask mandates, which adds muffled speech to the lacking ability to read lips.
The film follows four women who deal with hearing loss on a daily basis. It shows how they struggle and strive, dealing with the stigma that hearing loss presents to this day, while they also find success, despite their inability to hear well.
We Hear You has won several awards, including the June 2021 Monthly Awards of the Cannes World Film Festival, plus an Official Selection at the Montreal Independent Film Festival and The IndieFEST Film Awards. Having won a Monthly Cannes award, it is automatically entered as a contender in the Annual Competition; if it wins, it will be screened at the annual Cannes Award Ceremony in 2022.
We Hear You talks, loudly and clearly, about the struggles with hearing loss. But it also shows how people succeed, despite their perceived limitations. It shows us a world that those of us who are hearing impaired can dream of, an all-inclusive world where we’re all equal.