Call Me by Your Name

Call Me by Your Name ★★★★★

I walked out of this wanting to walk back in and experience it again.

What Chalamet does here is nothing short of perfection as he brings Elio to life and adds so many fascinating and honest layers to a character that frankly doesn't say very much. Beyond those of us who are in the LGBTQ+ community I think anyone can see in Elio the story of a first love and the crushing heartbreak that can come with it especially when you experience it as a teenager.

Stuhlbarg gets to play the father any queer child would be lucky to have and Hammer the first love we all would hope for and fear to have.

I appreciated the portrayal of the fluidity of sexuality, particularly during that time in life when you have just been awakened, but more than anything I appreciated how like any great romance this simply stewed in the "will they or won't they" narrative and then took us through what we would see in any heteronormative film of this nature that focuses on a secret love. A concern I have is that unlike recent award contending LGBTQ+ centered films like Carol and Moonlight, Call Me by Your Name feels free from the shackles of society and a lack of privilege which is what allows this romance to blossom free of certain fears, but on the other hand I can't help but feel this is a romance we deserve in which we can simply spirt ourselves away to the seemingly magical world of 1980s Italy and bask in the sun and the nostalgia of self discovery and first passions.

In a way, this is a gay fairy tale. The opening text that it is "Somewhere in Northern Italy", the series of scenes revolving around French fairy tales, and the overall idealized nature of a gay romance that is allowed to blossom without the typical dramas of such stories sets this up as a fantastical narrative, and while the crushing truth of reality does come through in the end it isn't without solace.

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