Perk of living in LA: there’s lots of really cool advance screenings (granted, it’s not so advance by the time I post this). Perk of having awesome friends: a buddy that’s a SAG member could get me into said screenings. Bonus perk: Actor and director Q&A after the film. Yup, was mere feet away from the gorgeous and charismatic Armie Hammer *swoon*
The story of Call Me By Your Name is quite simple. A young American man is spending a few weeks in Italy, finishing up some school projects. He befriends and soon engages in a romantic relationship with the son of his host family. No big drama, no psychotic villain, just a sweet romantic film.
Wait, what? Dawn’s into a romantic film? This one yeah. For some reason, I tend to get really into LGBTQ love stories on film far more than their straight counterparts. So that was reason number one. All bets are off when it comes to whether or not I’ll like these stories. Perhaps they’re more thought out and careful. Perhaps they’re more escapist for me. Perhaps there’s some other psychological issues going on. Who knows. The other reason this one really worked was the chemistry between our two leads (Armie Hammer and Timothee Chalamet) was palpable.
I honestly don’t know when I last felt such intense emotion radiating from a film, but it was something to experience. Some of it was luck in how the two actors were able to relate to each other, but I credit a lot of it to Chalamet’s performance. He had these expressions that would make you feel what he felt, and it was overpowering and beautiful.
The movie does take a little while to get going. It’s moody and atmospheric from the start, but the narrative action plays out slowly. It was a bit problematic for me at first, but the payoff was so worthwhile.
The film is beautiful in that there is no repercussions for their sexuality, no great villain keeping them apart. It’s just a celebration of their love. Oh and the parents are so wonderfully supportive. A speech from the father towards the end of the film nearly brought me to tears. And before you start to question the age difference, Hammer is actually older than the character, and the age of consent for the younger character in Italy is lower than here. So it’s all good. That shouldn’t even been a thing. Again, it’s simply an exquisitely told love story. Nothing more, nothing less.
Call Me By Your Name – \m/ \m/ \m/ \n