Coming-of-age, First Love, Helpless Obsession -- Podcast

Jus
2018-03-14 看过
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Podcast听写来源NPR的 "Pop Culture Happy Hour" 非常喜欢他们对各种电影/电视剧/文娱的讨论 一方面学英语 也是为了和同事聊天时 可以有高级的谈资甩出去..

第一次看Call Me By Your Name是在Sony Studios的放映室。坐在老板左边我全身紧绷,无法完全沉浸其中。后来读完小说,感觉是“恋人絮语”的最好诠释——那种热烈敏感细腻的青春感让人头晕目眩(虽然后来剪辑Andre Aciman的采访,让给对这个人颇有微词)。后来第二次在家里看,被完全抓住无法自拔,一直沉浸在OST里。这个Podcast让我更好能用言语去解释我对这部片/书的理解,感谢评论家们。

主持人 Linda Holmes; Glen Weldon; Steven Thompson; Bob Mondello

G: (Film and book) They’re both about longing. They’re both about this full-body ache of first initial obsession with somebody else. Romance is not my jam because there are only so many ways two people can come together. That’s true in life. It’s certainly true in movies because it’s just a matter of which cliche you lean on, right? It’s the grand, sweeping, romantic gesture, the love triangle, the funny friend, the meet-cute… All of that stuff. That’s in romance in particular. That’s true in any genre -- just stuff you have to lean on, a storytelling infrastructure. The reason this film, and this book hit me so deeply is because of representation, not just because there is queer desire on screen -- and I experience queer desire -- but representation has an aesthetic quality to it. When you start to tell the story that has not yet been told, you’re forced, as an artist, to innovate, to subvert, to interrogate, to make something new. And it’s these two characters, in this very specific time, like they do not have access to the storytelling tropes that we’ve seen millions of times -- ain’t nobody standing outside, nobody else’s outside the window with a boombox in this movie because they can’t. (The story sets in ‘83 in a very Roman Catholic Italy.) Everything that is communicated between these characters, certainly at the beginning of this film, has to be coded, layered, nuanced. And that is just inherently more interesting. Representation means better art.

L: The film to me is so tone-forward, if I can say that, rather than being plot-forward or even dialogue-forward, it is tone-forward, it is tone-forward. Does it have kind of the same quality as the book in that way?

G: If anything to me, the film feels more swoony and romantic because the book is told from Elio’s point of view. He is a very interior character. He is introvert, and he thinks a lot. The entire book is about the signals that he’s sending off that he thinks he might not be able to getting back. There’s a whole lovely runner in the book about how he starts to impute all these motivations onto the color of bathing suits that Oliver is wearing that day. It feels so true. Now, a lesser filmmaker, a lesser screenwriter would have shunted all of that work, all that lovely prose, just done it in voiceover. But instead it’s all happening on their faces. It’s all happening in the acting. It’s a big gamble, but it pays off hugely. You just feel the fact that they’re not connecting when they desperately want to.

B: I saw the movie and thought this is wonderful, and I’ve got to read about these characters. I got like 100 pages in, and I was still saying to myself, this is not possible. You cannot turn this into a movie. This wouldn’t work because there’s almost no dialogue in the book. Nobody says anything. Nobody connects for the longest time. Which makes this movie fascinating. It’s gorgeous to watch. I think in a lot of respects, it does the book a great service in making you wait, making you wait the way that Elio has to wait in the novel for a sign one way the other that something’s happening.

S: Going into it as a fairly cold audience member, I watched it especially at first in anticipation of conflict. You’re watching a gay love story unfold in 1983, and as this film unfolds, there is no mention of the AIDS crisis. There is no gay-bashing. There are no disapproving parents. There is no judgy teenagers. It is a love story that is allowed to unfold in a petri dish, and just be about itself, and be this very touching and romantic story. And the fact that it’s a story without conflict, really does mean, that relies very heavily on tone, but it does so beautifully. I thought the performance of Timothee Chalamet, as Elio, is such an incredibly impressive performance. It’s not just how much acting he’s doing with his face. There is a physicality to him in the love scenes that spoke to my... There’s this almost kind of sheepdoggish quality where he’s bounding around Armie Hammer, kind of climbing on him awkwardly, and then kind of pushing him away, and then grabbing at him… It’s like you have all this physical energy, and all this, you can say lust, but it’s also just excitement, and that plays out in such a subtle way, but it was also I saw something very very universal in it, and was really smitten with it.

B: Because the barriers to them getting together are cultural, but they’re also internal. They’re external, but also hormonal.

L: One of the things that I like about the Armie Hammer performance is how opaque Oliver is early on. He has a kind of cool guy glibness, or superficial glibness I should say, that really makes you wonder, is he paying attention to Elio at all? Is he just a sort of the guy you would fall in love with at summer camp who would never notice you? They make it feel plausible, that it could be that, at the beginning. One of the things I really like about it as a love story is it’s very common in a love story for there to be one person who’s being fully forthcoming in a kind of swoony, aggressive way, and one person who is doubtful for whatever variety of internal and external reasons. The way they play with those dynamics without specifying to much, the way they play with those dynamics between these two guys, where their hesitancy is, and also how they navigate, getting to the point where they are even acknowledging this is what they’re talking about. There is a scene that they play around the monument. It’s so subtle how it’s done that you couldn’t. If you try to explain on paper exactly what’s happening, it’s all in the performances.

There is this age difference between Elio, 17, and Oliver, 24. This is an age difference for a lot of people, including me, is uncomfortable a little bit. It’s certainly something where you have to be very careful about the circumstances particularly you’re trying to make sure that the 17-year-old is well cared for.

G: Andre Aciman who wrote the novel. He could’ve written the story about two 24-year-olds. He did not. Or made him an 18-year-old. This discomfiture we’re experiencing with this movie is part of the energy of this movie. The fact that Oliver is holding himself back. He’s doing that for a reason, that creates this longing even more. It’s messy. It’s intentionally messy, but we’re supposed to feel that. It’s about coming-of-age, first love, that helpless obsession. And again, it’s another obstacle. Oliver keeps saying, no, no, and eventually said Yes. We’re conditioned by decades of romantic narratives to want these two people to get together, and the fact that one of them is 17 is messy. The story and the movie go out of way to establish that intellectually at least they’re equals. Elio is a very prodigious, precocious, smart, intelligent. It doesn’t mean that they’re emotionally right. People who say, look, this is still an adult and a teenager, have a point.

B: And it’s made more complex in the movie that it was in the book is because Armie is himself not 24, he is 31. He reads older, and that makes it visually tricky. Timothee Chalamet is 21, and playing 17, but persuasively playing 17.

H: But I think it’s okay to live in that place where this is messy. This is a messy situation that’s part of the story that this is a messy situation that’s one of the reasons that it plays out the way it does. And I don’t think you have to feel like I’m totally comfortable with this to hear the story and take the story and not feel like the story as a story of exploitation of a teenager by an adult.

G: I think it’s fascinating that this is a movie when you talk about it as a messy love story. It is fascinating that it is a messy love story entirely because of internal forces instead of external forces. It really removes so many of the traditional external forces.

S: That scene toward the end when they were in Rome and it’s deserted, it’s the middle of the night, they were in the alley, happy, and horny. We, queer audiences, are conditioned to experience that, and then wait, wait for the bashing, wait for the police, wait for disaster to strike. When we do this to ourselves, when queer artists make queer movies, we still do that -- there is a punishment that has to come. And the fact that it doesn’t in this particularly movie feels like nothing else than a gift. As much as this film would come under criticism of depicting an adult and a teenager, there a lot of gay critics who want it to be more sexually explicitbecause Guadagnino is known for movies like “I Am Love” which use sex scenes to characterize people. That’s one of his things. The fact that we literally cut away to the wafting curtain as soon as these two get together is just… I kinda wish the movie proves right up -- roll its trousers. Dare to eat the peach, like happens in the book.

B: My experiences are always floating away to the curtains, uniform, and my experience as a gay man. I think those beautifully wafting curtains are part of the beauty of this movie that has everything to do with that statue coming up out of the deep and looking like it’s just come up from the swim, or take cradling a fish. There is this fish that is brought in. And the guy who has caught it brings it in and shows it to Elio and then takes it to the woman who’s going to cook it, and she cradles it. She holds it in her arm as if it were a baby and takes it into the kitchen. And I just thought, that is breathtaking. It is so beautiful. There are scenes in this movie that are in the movie exclusively to be gorgeous. It’s just gorgeous. It makes you feel like you’re in Italy in the middle of the summer. They actually spent 11 years trying to make the movie unable to do it because they encountered some difficulties in the summer, and it really can’t be filmed in the Fall in Italy. It just wouldn’t work. My favorite tidbit of the movie is that at one point the person who’s going to play Oliver was Shia LaBoeuf. That would make such a different movie.

H: When you talked about the aesthetic of the movie and some of the things that were doing with visuals, my other favorite visuals, kind of themes of the film, is bicycles. There is something about bicycles in film. And you can find it star kids, teens, even in Stranger Things, but also in Breaking Away. There are something about bicycles in coming-of-age stories that I think drive home this idea of freedom, both because you have to feel safe in a certain way to be willing to bike everyway, but also because bicycles are so much of a part of the indepence for adolescents. And this film makes great use of bicycles and travel as an element of this story, and it’s one of the things I really love about it.

S: I do want to mention Michael Stuhlbarg’s performance. He has a very Oscar-clippy monologue that just made me blubber all over the place. He’s in three movies that could very well be nominated for Best Picture this year. He is everywhere. So is Timothee Chalamet.

H: He is one of those actors where all of the sudden you feel like maybe you’ve not paid attention to them, and all of sudden they have this year where he emerges. But that Stuhlbarg scene, on the one hand, it does feel clippy. It’s so sad to me that we are sort of conditioned to see a great scene as awards-bait. But that is a beautiful scene and also an incredibly unusual scene. It’s very, very uncommon what the film is doing with Elio’s parents, and it’s one of those things when I saw it emerge and when I realized what was unfolding, I sort of thought, this is nothing I expected from them. And of course I will add, please, if you see this film, do not turn it off or walk out of the theatre when the credits start. Watch all the way through the credits. It’s really important. I think that final shot to me says so much about how layered and interesting the story is.

B: It’s not at all painful to watch another 10 seconds of this movie. It’s ravishing.

H: It’s very generous towards its characters. It’s very good-hearted and beautiful to watch.

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