Charlie Swinbourne: Has controversial new film The Tribe changed what a deaf film can be?

Posted on May 14, 2015

Our Editor, Charlie Swinbourne, has written this article for BBC News’ Ouch disability blog about the new film The Tribe, which is out this Friday.


The Tribe is a Ukrainian film, directed by Myroslav Slaboshpytskiy, set in a deaf boarding school where everyone communicates in sign language. When a teenager joins the school, he wins acceptance into a network dealing in crime and prostitution. But when he breaks the unwritten rules of the tribe, his future is threatened.

The film is very naturally and subtly acted, with few cuts and lots of long uninterrupted takes where the camera stays still for minutes at a time. Watching The Tribe feels like peeking into an alternative reality, a troubling world where the deaf pupils have become a law unto themselves, marginalised so that they can be exploited.

Read the rest of the article by clicking here.

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