Formerly known as “Hamill” (at least that was that title when I saw it at the 2011 Florida Film Festival), “The Hammer” is a movie based on the life of Matt “The Hammer” Hamill, a wrestler and eventual MMA fighter who was born deaf and had to overcome some extra obstacles that not even the average deaf person has to deal with.
“Being a movie about a deaf person, the sound design obviously plays a big role in the storytelling – there are often times when we are presented with what Hamill could have been sensing at those moments, whether he’s wrestling, or on a date, or lying in a stream in his prom tux, and helps us understand what he could be going through and what it would be like to be in his position. The entire movie is also subtitled, obviously closed-captioned for the hearing impaired, which only makes sense for a film like this, but they also use the subtitles to show how Hamill struggled to communicate with people. If he could read their lips, then he would be fine, and the subtitles would be fine; but if he couldn’t see the person’s lips moving, then he could read them, hence he didn’t know what they were saying, which was shown as a series of dashes in place of the words he missed. Obviously a lot of thought went in to how to portray this character and this movie, and it definitely pays off as an overall experience.”
It’s a good movie, definitely an interesting “spin” on a the age old underdog story, and it is available to watch now on the Netflix Instant right here.