Saturday, February 10, 2018
CALL ME BY YOUR NAME (2017)
Directed By: Luca Guadagnino
Written By: James Ivory
Based On The Book Written By: Andre Aciman
Cinematography By: Sayombhu Mukdeeprom
Editor: Walter Fasano
Cast: Timothee Chalamet, Armie Hammer, Esther Garrel, Michael Stuhlbarg, Amira Casar
In Northern Italy in 1983, seventeen year-old Elio begins a relationship with visiting Oliver, his father's research assistant, with whom he bonds over his emerging sexuality, their Jewish heritage, and the beguiling Italian landscape. I am not the biggest fan of director Luca Guadagnino as it is obvious he has talent but I have never exactly been a fan of his previous films. Visually lucious but the stories and plots left a lot to be desired. Here he seems to have found the right material because here he and his style definitely come through loud and clear.
What is truly absorbing is that for all this flash. It settles into subtlety when the story truly starts and you begin to focus more on the characters and emotions.
This is the most romantic movie I have seen in recent memory. It’s a movie you have to be in a mood for. Though it shows the glory of love most of the film also shows the hardships and bad times.
Though I knew what to expect. I was still amazed by what I saw and the experience. As it is a film go great beauty and exploration as a coming of age story, but also one that for all of it’s visual flourish and rich details especially when it comes to locations. What sweeps you up is the characters and the emotions involved. As it is a love story that just happens to be between two men. Which makes no difference. As what we watch is the initial attraction and fighting it and not either one of them willing to admit it. So it comes out as annoyance yet. Keep finding. A fascination with one another. Usually In finding. A reason to dislike or something new to annoy but slowly becoming obsessed with facts and details about them and then when finally having a little acknowledgment one seeming to fight it either because of forbidden rules of age or gender or not being true to themselves. Until finally passion tales over and they fall so deeply that the other is all that matters and nothing can distract them from each other. Even if to get to that point one or the other has to make the other jealous and use someone to not only get their joy but also torture the other into action. This is identifiable not necessarily for all relationships but those moments of romance, attraction and intimacy and what they can make you do or you find yourself doing. Even in the scene where one smells the others shorts putting them around his head. As in his absence he can at least be reminded of him in his mind by his smell. Which next to the ending is truly one of the most heartbreaking moments of the film. As your feelings for a person can become an obsession in itself where you are an addict to these feelings.
So much that you gamble with them and continuously find yourself tortured. Just for those few moments of flirty and pleasure.
The film is a portrait in itself. Almost a still life that tells you so much while you just watch and examine. You take it in as it is revealed.
It’s atmospheric so much that you feel like you are in it or that you can feel the details all around you. Whisking you through the natural beauty of countryside Italy. Where it seems the constant heat and steamy humidity leads to tight clothes such as shorts and bare chests with open shirts and the fashions of 1983
The actors don’t only act with words and emotion but also body language so that you can tell how the character is feeling even if the words betray them. Open, closed vulnerable.
Armie Hammer’s character has a difficult role himself as he is supposed to be the more responsible one but he is charged by the passion he feels. Even if he suspects the parents know to a degree what is going on they are at least aware of the attraction but they try to not make it blatant. Though you can see hammer’s character let go in fact the only time he seems free is when badly dancing to popular music of the time. That is when he is at his most open.
One other performance is notable that of Esther Garrel. As she is heartbreaking in her small role as the girl who loves Elio’s charcter but suspects he doesn’t feel the same way. They start out as friends then Become a couple and lovers. It seems for him out of convenience or maybe even practice. Also allowing him to seem more normal and to experiment to see if maybe it is just a phase. It ultimately he seems to use her to make hammer’s character jealous and soon drops and avoids her after getting what he wants.
This film is an out and out romance that doesn’t really touch on too many more issues. Other than emotions and society