Sunday, December 31, 2017

Call Me By Your Name

Movie Name: Call Me By Your Name
Year of Release: 2017
Director: Luca Guadagnino
Stars: Timothee Chalamet, Armie Hammer, Michael Stuhlbarg, Amira Casar, Esther Garrel, Victoire Du Bois, Vanda Capriolo, Antonio Rimoldi, Peter Spears
Genre: Drama, Romance
Score out of ten (whole numbers only): 9
View Trailer

Celebrated director Luca Guadagnino is back, with another striking feature, following the equally alluring and beautiful "A Bigger Splash". "Call Me By Your Name" is an adaptation of the novel by Andre Aciman by acclaimed director James Ivory (who is also one of the credited producers on this project). The film follows the story of young  seventeen year old Elio, who lives with his parents in an idyllic small town in Northern Italy, in 1983. Typically during the Summer, his father gets a research assistant, who in this occasion, turns out to be a dashing young American by the name of Oliver. Initially surprised by Oliver's aloof nature, Elio slowly becomes fascinated by the young man, until they both surrender to an attraction that consumes their attention and emotions.
Luca Guadagnino is a director who manages to perfectly capture the nuance of how amorous relationships develop. "Call Me By Your Name" is a perfect example of his artistry in successfully defining a stage, and allowing for the characters to co-exist and evolve. The film is wonderful in capturing the intellectual aspect of these characters, but also the familial relationships that are established in the Italian countryside, where an air of sensuality permeates across the main characters. It's a film that is perfect in capturing the agonies of young love, but also the energy and placid feel of the Mediterranean culture in the 80s (and there's definitely an ode to the countryside so perfectly captured by James Ivory in the classic "A Room with a View"). The cast is stupendous, particularly Timothee Chalamet, who manages to showcase his versatility with his usage of multiple languages and musical prowess, but also by imbuing his character with vulnerability, fear, impulsiveness and tenderness. Both Armie Hammer and Michael Stuhlbard are excellent in their roles. The cinematography from Sayombhu Mukdeeprom is luscious, and the score is phenomenal (the songs from Sufjan Stevens are beautiful). A stupendous film worth watching, from a very talented director.