Only I Can Hear

Only I Can Hear

  • Heath Cozens, Itaru Matsui
  • New Zealand, United States, Japan
  • 2022
  • 78 min
  • English, Japanese
Three hearing teenagers come of age in the vibrant, raucous Deaf community in America’s Midwest. They are CODA—Children of Deaf Adults, and they must search for their identity.

With incredible compassion, directors Itaru Matsui and New Zealander Heath Cozens follow these girls as they come of age in the Deaf community. How will they define their identity living in the middle of different cultures?

Nyla (15) views her ability to hear as both a gift and a curse as she struggles to fit in among her school peers. Mackenzie (14) feels trapped in the cycle of a “double life”, while Jessica (16) is afraid of losing the language that is part of her identity as she spends more time in the hearing world.

For these young CODA, a unique summer camp offers a chance to explore their identity, under the gentle guidance of their mentors.

When their role model Ashley becomes pregnant, she confronts doubts of her own. What if her son is hearing? Could the Deaf lineage, and her profound connection to that world, end with him?

As these four young women seek companionship in their shared experience, Only I Can Hear reveals a complex story of life skills, language, and perceptions that form their universe.

With CODA taking home the Best Picture Award at the 2022 Oscars, this documentary gives a meaningful backstory to the real lives of these exceptional humans.

International Premiere



Auckland  |  Fri 24 Jun, The Capitol

Christchurch  |  Sat 25 Jun, Silky Otter Cinema

Live Q&A with Director Heath Cozens.

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