Love it or hate it, the Eternals movie is officially part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) canon. While it’s not Marvel’s most popular movie, it does have some interesting plot points and also introduces Eros in the end credits (played by Harry Styles).
One of the other things that sets Eternals apart from other movies is its diversity. It not only features the first openly gay superhero and the first MCU South-Asian superhero but also the first deaf one as well.
That character, Makkari, is played by deaf actress Lauren Ridloff. There’s a scene in the movie that a lot of people might not realize holds a ton of emotional weight for not only Makkari but especially for Ridloff. The anecdote comes from Reddit user usernameartichoke, and obviously spoilers for Eternals are ahead.
One thing to understand about Ridloff is that’s she is nonverbal by choice.
“When Lauren was 13 years old she went to a camp for deaf children and it completely changed her outlook on life. She came home and told her family she would no longer be speaking or using her voice. She would not simcom for the world anymore (Simultaneous communication – when a person verbally speaks as they sign to allow hearing people to understand them).”
Fast forward almost 30 years and now Ridloff is making her acting debut in a Broadway play called Children Of a Lesser God.
“When Lauren was cast she had not used her voice in almost 30 years. She asked the director if she really had to do it and he said that the character, scene, and the play required it. It is a emotionally cathartic moment that is necessary to the story. It was an extremely uncomfortable and emotional experience for Lauren but in the first cast read through she used her voice to produce a scream.”
Now let’s talk about that scene in Eternals where Makkari screams when she thinks Ikaris murdered Druig.
That moment had so much weight to it that a lot of people aren’t aware of. That is the most vulnerable, uncomfortable, and emotionally raw thing Makkari could have done in that moment. That single scream communicated so much about their relationship that I think the majority of the audience wouldn’t know the depths of.
Now there’s some extra context to that scene and it’s easy to see how it holds so much weight. In Eternals, a movie of firsts, Makkari screaming really stands out.