Release Date: November 24, 2017
Director: Luca Guadagnino
Language: English, Italian, French
Who should watch this movie: Anyone who has ever had a summer romance. Anyone who has experienced heart break.
When should you watch this movie: When you are feeling particularly tender and want to lean into those feelings. When you’re feeling lonely.
The sell: Love stories make up a substantial proportion of extant cinema making it hard to come across a fresh take. Not much about Call Me By Your Name is overtly novel or unprecedented, but it stands out in its honesty. Guadagnino doesn’t just show you a relationship, he shows you everything around it. The setting and atmosphere are not just a backdrop to interpersonal drama, rather they play an active role in creating the emotional environment in which young love takes on new meaning. Guadagnino makes sure that you know what goes unsaid, what is communicated through glances, biking down the lane side by side, playing the piano, or reading in silence. Sometimes the light through the trees is melancholic and sometimes it’s intensely erotic. This is not to say that the dialogue isn’t also brilliant. The characters don’t always have the right words, and we love them for that, but sometimes the words are perfect and they strike a chord in the most personal parts of our psyche. There is no dramatic declaration of love, no grand displays of affection. Instead there is the quiet exchange of notes, repeated eyeing of a watch, and whispers in bed. The combined power of Guadagnino’s subtle cinematography and Sufjan Steven’s everything results in an emotional deep dive unlike any romance movie you have ever seen. Drink lots of water.