MOVIE REVIEW: “Call Me By Your Name” stars Timothée Chalamet (Interstellar, Love the Coopers), Armie Hammer (The Lone Ranger , The Social Network), Michael Stuhlbarg (The Shape of Water, Fargo [TV series]), Amira Casar (Planetarium, Night of a 1000 Hours), and Esther Garrel (Camille Rewinds, House of Tolerance). It was directed by Luca Guadagnino (I Am Love, A Bigger Splash), while the screenplay was written by James Ivory (The Remains of the Day, A Room with a View). Based on a novel of the same name, this film follows Italian seventeen-year-old Elio (Chalamet), as he falls in love with Oliver (Hammer), his father’s research assistant from America.
I hated “Call Me By Your Name.” Need I say more? Fine, I guess I will. Out of all the Best Picture nominees, I’d say the one I was dreading the most to see was this one; we all know why. Before you call me a homophobe (or “by your name,” get it?), hear me out. There is so much to this movie that is just downright terrible, from the characters to the dialogue they are given to speak. Regardless of whether or not you enjoy two men playing around with each other, there should be a unifying opinion that simplistic dialogue that seems like it was written in a Reddit post is not good; not by any cinematic standards. Whoever wrote this clearly had no clue what to do with the story besides display several scenes of these guys having sex (whether with each other or women). When they weren’t walking around Italy sighing over life, the two leads were hitting on each other and reveling in their forbidden romance. Granted, it took a whole hour for them to actually formulate their love, but nonetheless I felt like I was watching a “Fifty Shades” release that was given a bigger budget. Seriously guys, if you switched the genders of one of the main characters, I would still take away the same opinion. When Oliver and Elio weren’t making love, they were biking around Italy, filling the air with either nonsensical philosophy or flattery that, for me, was cringey and downright hilarious. How they got to falling in love is beyond me; there was hardly any build-up, with the first sign of one of them liking the other being a scene of sniffing the other’s pants (which was disgusting). It’s as if the writer assumed that the trailer would fill the gap of no character development, where we already knew that they were gay from the previews. From then on, it was a non-stop cat and mouse game, filled with several grotesque sex scenes and angst of the situation. Besides the cinematography and location, there isn’t much redeemable about this picture. Obviously, the theme involves forbidden love for the sake of happiness, but it’s such a fickle, worldly view of things that I was easily sickened by it from the get-go. It’s a long, agonizing journey of one boy getting involved with an older man and finding himself in the process. However, I’m only speculating this from the writer’s perspective; I certainly didn’t get this, and you have to admit that regardless of the homosexuality, the fact that a seventeen-year-old kid is having sex with a guy in his thirties should be enough to turn you away (I’d at least hope so). Please, don’t watch this. FINAL SCORE: 15%= Burnt Popcorn