The Original BJ wrote:(Were this movie taking place in 2017, obviously certain elements would be different, but I'd honestly find it a lot less believable that a guy like Oliver would fall for Elio at all.)
I don't have time to reply to any single absurdity which this thread is full of. You guys should get a life soon
Just let me say that of course Precious Doll is right - each of us is attracted to different types, and while I personally wouldn't be interested in either Elio AND OLIVER, I accept and understand that one can find attractive a slim - but by the way not ugly - 17-year-old person. That's the beauty of life - just accept it, or you will really miss alot. I don't see why today such a relationship would be impossible... In America, maybe, where political correctness has killed any spontaneity. You need a holiday, Original BJ - or you simply watch too many movies. Come to Europe
(As for Uri's complicated explanation of Oliver's attraction to Elio, it must be read to be believed).
Now. the movie. For once I find it difficult to be completely objective - the boy is just a few years older than I was in 1983, the film was shot in and around my city (one crucial scene even right outside my old school), and there are other aspects that I can easily - too easily - relate to (for example the boy's parents - while probably even more open-minded than mine were in the 80s - in many ways, the mother also physically, reminded me of MY parents). The movie has brought me back to those long summers when I was a teenager - summers when nothing seemed to happen except riding bycicles and swimming in lakes, yet, of course, EVERYTHING actually happened. Those hot, endless summers seemed so boring back then - we were anxiously waiting for adulthood, independency, etc - and now they don't exist anymore, and at times we miss them terribly.
The pains, torments, and passions of adolescence - especially, and in this case there IS a difference between then and today, when falling in love with someone of your same sex - are also VERY believable. It was, back then, a slower process than it's probably today, a process full of silences, innuendoes and - I can't deny it - guilty feelings. And - but I repeat that I won't reply to the absurdities - often you DIDN'T WANT TO KNOW MUCH abput the object of your love. Living that moment was the essence. Today's teenagers are certainly more confortable than we were - society (at least in the Western world) and the web are there to support them
Still - and this is what I found interesting watching the movie - there were also positive aspects about growing up in that period, and I realized that even the pain, the doubts, etc, - well, they kind-of had a certain charm, and certainly made life interesting. In a way, the movie has made me miss that, too - which, as a stable, way less emotional 40-something-year-old man, I didn't expect to.
But a movie has to be judged rationally, too. So. The portrayal of Lombardy (the region I live in) in the 80s is very accurate - right up to the political posters on the city's walls. The cars (including the license plates), the clothes, the music, the magazines sold in the newstands... everything is spot-on (this isn't All The Money in the World). And, again, I appreciated how slow and detailed the movie's portrayal of the central relationship is.
But - in this case Uri is right - the movie may seem less original in Europe than it's pervceived to be in the US. There have been many, many movies here about those fateful summers of discoveries and growing up - it is admittedly a genre unto itself. The language may be Italian, French, Swedish, Spanish, Russian, etc, the sex may be straight or gay or both - but let's face it, it has been done before, sometimes even better than here (but often worse, too).
And while there are scenes that I admired - for the tenderness, the sublety even, others - the sex ones especially - seemed a bit reticent /the camera discreetly turning to the window and the trees outside was, well... come on...). In a way, one can find this sort-of "modesty" affecting, even poetic, still from a purely emotional point of view I find Guadagnino's approach (here and in other movies) strangely frigid - and while frigidness is a psychological trait that I can't condemn, if it's adopted for commercial reasons - or, simply, to get a better reception in the US - it's probably a bit less honest.
But the movie in general IS honest. And the acting is, too. Thimotee Chalamet's last, long close-up is one of the best in recent memory. Is his a great performance? Maybe not, and obviously not an expert one - but it's so natural, so unshowy, so rich in details, that, great or not, it might be much better than the one which will finally get the Oscar.