Oh. Boy. You. Guys. I have been waiting for this movie for what feels like ages. When I first saw the trailer with Armie Hammer in his shorty shorts biking down the streets of northern Italy with a white shirt billowing behind him, I was hooked. After a heavy recommendation from a friend, I picked up the book and my anticipation grew. And yet I was still blown out of the water by this movie.
I’m worried simply writing this and thinking about Sufjan Stevens “Mystery of Love” will set off my tears again. This movie was so beautiful, I’m worried this whole review will just be me blubbering about it. Let me try to get some coherent thoughts out. I cannot believe Luca Guadagnino pulled off every single aspect of the movie. The setting was stunning, the music was incredible, the ambiance of the film drove everything. But this movie would be nothing without this cast. Every member felt like they had been born to play this role to me, and everything came together in a gorgeous love story that left me ruined bawling in a creaky recliner at the local strip mall.
Michael Stuhlbarg is primed to be in 3 Best Picture nominees this year, and after this performance, I think he should be in every movie ever. Armie Hammer as the dreamy intellectual object of affection is perfection, and I obviously would have spent a whole summer lusting after him as well. But the heart and soul of Call Me by Your Name is the absolutely triumphant performance by Timothée Chalamet. He is at times precocious, childish, moody, lustful, fickle, charming, and devastating. I was completely enchanted with his character, feeling as if I was relating with him at every turn, but also painfully aware that while I may have felt young love, it was nothing like the magic that Oliver and Elio had. How can you be reminiscent about something that was never yours? I guess good acting. I am now irrationally invested in him winning an Oscar.
The raw material of this story is gold. A steamy romance in a picturesque Italian village by the sea, with very little conflict that is a byproduct of the characters being gay. An academic culturally savvy family raising a musical prodigy. It’s all good. But I would have never thought I could love the film as much as I did, I have a feeling this will be sticking with me for weeks to come, as I sit in my car crying to “Visions of Gideon”. Or at the very least, screaming across my cubicle at work- “AND THEN HE EATS THE PEACH!”10/10