By: Movie Snurb (A Toast) –
Call Me by Your Name is based on the amazing novel by Andre Aciman. It centers around a beautiful love story in Northern Italy in 1983. Oliver (Armie Hammer) is working towards his doctorate and gets a Research Assistant job with Professor Perlman (Michael Stuhlbarg) for 6 weeks in the summer of ’83. During these 6 weeks Oliver ends up falling for Mr. Perlman’s son Elio (Timothee Chalamet). They have a brief but beautiful relationship that will impact the rest of their lives. It’s not only about their relationship, it’s also about what every teenage boy goes through and what every person does during the beginning of a relationship.
Timothee Chalamet learn to love the name and the actor. A major section of the book, like the first third, is Elio having an internal struggle trying to figure out if Oliver likes him. He overthinks every move Oliver makes until Elio hears a passage from a book and decides it is better to speak than to die. It’s incredibly difficult acting- I can equate it to Casey Affleck last year in Manchester By the Sea. With few or no words Timothee and Casey were able to convey everything they were thinking, without being showy and throwing things to show anger. The final scene alone should earn every award for Timothee but it looks like Gary Oldman’s year.
Armie Hammer is also brilliant as Oliver, appearing distant but that’s just himself. His “Later!” isn’t callous and uncaring, but just who he is; it becomes endearing. Michael Stuhlbarg is special in this film. His final monologue practically lifted out of the book is the essence of the film. In life, we cannot wall ourselves off from emotion. People come into our lives in many ways and if we refuse to get close to them so we don’t get hurt again would be a waste of a life. It truly is better to speak than to die.
This is a rare case where I almost liked the film more than the book. The book was amazing but the film is even more beautiful and almost brought me to tears where the book didn’t. James Ivory’s ability to transfer the book to screen and to keep the essence of the book is what makes a brilliant adapted screenplay. James Ivory deserves a lot of credit for writing such a beautiful story of two men falling for each other. The best thing about this film is it’s not about a gay romance being stifled, but it’s a romantic drama celebrating a gay relationship and the film treats it as a straight romantic drama. It’s beautiful to watch and I hope we get to watch Mr. Ivory accept the Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay come Oscar night.
Call Me by Your Name is a beautiful film about young love and at the same time is a great representation at what it is like to be a 17-year-old man and grappling with your sexuality. Timothee does a perfect job at showing this internally while trying to figure out Oliver. Timothee Chalamet is truly the next Robert De Niro and will be around for a very long time. Everyone should watch this film at least once, either to give you comfort for being who you are or to give you the courage to jump.
Call Me By Your Name (2017) Movie Review
Do a Shot: for every shot of a peach.
Do a Shot: for every sexual experience.
Take a Drink: for every moment you understand what Elio is going through.
Finish your Beer: during Stuhlbarg’s monologue
And Drink another Beer: to keep you from crying at the end.