It was a long time since I had seen such a delicate and warm film about coming-of-age, and with Lady Bird it has dragged attention to the theme. The closest I recall was "The Perks of Being a Wallflower", mainly due to his main character Charlie, so shy and delicate and, yet, so incredibly true.
I was able to live part of my youth both ignoring technology and shaping the way I learn to communicate through instant messaging. I was born in Milan in 1988, and my family raised me, on summer breaks, between the Piacenza countryside, Liguria beaches and Trentino mountains. I had my first mobile phone when I was in secondary school and I remember having "Home", "Grandparents", "Mom office" in the contact lists. None of my friends had a mobile, so for a long time mine was dead in a drawer in the kitchen, while I skate in the courtyard.
It was a way to jump back when
I was younger and had no experience of technology.
"Call me by your name" made me think about the endless summer afternoon, reading somewhere, escaping from homework.
Even though messaging is crucial to our lifetime and daily routine, Snapchat, Instagram Stories, whatever, I'm grateful I had the time to live part of my life in a genuine way. Please don't let me be misunderstood: I'm not a radical supporter of exclusive verbal and eye-contact relationship. I'm fully aware that social communication is playing a crucial role in our society. Both "Call me by name" and "The Perks of Being a Wallflower" are about the delicate struggle of becoming a grown-up, dwelling upon feelings and emotions, but expressed in person. Sometimes they are designate to proxemics and sometimes are trapped in the deepest part of the chest.
The film is a visual ode to what was to live summer in Italy at that time. An ample house with gardens, a tiny natural stone pool, fruit trees, uncomfortable striped beach chair to read and nap. A big table where to regroup before the sunset in a garden filled up with cicadas.
A family inspired and nourished by literature, cultural, arts and freedom. The genuine passion for the past and its meaningful sorrow. Elio's parents are passionate and cultural developed people with a deep understanding of their son's desires and needs. I can say one of the most beautiful dialogue in the film is the one between father and son: "nature has the funniest way to find our weakest spot." They share a secret experience of young love, connected by a shared experience, they now know and respect each other in a more profound and gentle way.
Luca Guadagnino's signature is the final scene. A 4-minute scene in which no one says a word. Elio, in the foreground, cries and smiles, suffering and remembering the beautiful moments spent together with Oliver and, in the background, blurred, the family is setting the table.
When we suffer the world around us continues to spin
and somehow it takes us back, wrapped, into reality.
But there's a moment, suspended in our life, when emotions overwhelm our mind in the most powerful and destructive way. That moment come to the surface in an uncanny swirl of feelings and awareness.
We have all been there, at least once.