Call Me By Your Name (2017): A Beautifully Executed Picture Led By The Equally Brilliant Pairing Of Armie Hammer and Timothée Chalamet (Review)


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[Credit: Sony Pictures/Mongrel Media]

Based on the 2007 novel of the same name, Call Me By Your Name follows 17-year-old Elio Perlman (Timothée Chalamet) as he spends the summer with his family in their 17th Century Italian villa along with his father’s doctoral student, Oliver (Armie Hammer). The film also stars Michael Stuhlbarg, Amira Casar, Esther Garrel, and Victoire Du Bois and is directed by Luca Guadagnino (I Am Love, A Bigger Splash).

“But to feel nothing so as not to feel anything – what a waste.”

My Thoughts On The Characters And Story

Set in the summer of 1983 when the Sony Walkman was all the rage and people just showed up at your house without prior cell phone confirmation, Call Me By Your Name delivers on a gorgeously heartfelt, emotional witty punch in the gut that I absolutely adored watching. Following my watch on a Tuesday night and expressing my adoration for it on Instagram, my best friend who I was planning on meeting up with the next day proved that fate exists by stating she was going to ask whether I wanted to watch the film when we went out. After thinking about it for about a morsel of half a second, I sent the showtimes for Wednesday and basked in the glory of this phenomenal film for a second time less than 24 hours after my initial watch. It is a surprisingly rewatchable film although I must warn you that frequent bouts of tears will endure on subsequent watches, similarly to when you watched it for the very first time. 

Armie Hammer and Timothée Chalamet excel in every scene they appear in. As the story mostly follows Elio’s perspective, Chalamet shines as a young man struggling to understand the flood of feelings that plague him. And honestly, if you encounter a human being who possesses even an ounce of charisma that Armie Hammer has, who wouldn’t briefly picture what their lives would look like together? The acclaim Chalamet is receiving (particularly with his recent Academy Award for Best Actor nomination) is infinitely well deserved. I do think it’s quite a travesty that Hammer is not receiving similar awards consideration for the Best Supporting category. He not only works incredibly well with Chalamet on screen, his presence is known and felt throughout the film – I felt a jolt of excitement every time he appeared because I knew he brought his A game to this role and his character is elevated immensely because of it. 

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[Credit: Sony Pictures/Mongrel Media]
There are also no weak links in the supporting cast, Amira Casar and Michael Stuhlbarg execute virtually flawless performances as the Perlman parents. The refined monologue you’ve probably heard of that caused Frank Ocean to declare a new change in parent will seep into your very core with how eloquent the words are and how gentle Stuhlbarg’s approach is. While discussing the scene, he provided some insight into what he believed his character was thinking at that moment and how he wanted to “be honest as a parent”:

“… I think he’s offering up a part of himself to his son at a time when his son needs it. I understand that his father is not just a father, he’s a person and had a life before he met Elio’s mother. He has some, perhaps, joy at the fact that his son has felt something so deeply and perhaps a sense of regret from his own past that he didn’t take a road that he wanted to. Or maybe a road he wanted to take and did take and it didn’t workout. I think he’s offering up a part of himself to his son that his son needs at that moment.”

As someone whose favourite films revolve around the concept of characters in minimal locations simply talking to each other (see: Richard Linklater’s Before trilogy or 12 Angry Men), Call Me By Your Name provides a captivating look at sexuality and the internal struggles/complexities involved with it. The film takes its time to develop the characters, provides a mesmerizing sense of location and allows the audience to feel as though they are present within every scene. They are a fly on the wall, watching how these individuals with their own difficulties and joys communicate with one another verbally and through gestural actions. The various symbolic motifs present provide a further layer of depth to the film that anyone whose interested in analyzing film will have a field day with. Yet it does well in not bogging the actual film down with heavy-handed imagery, the nuances present will give those interested in further watches something to look out for. On my second watch, I paid close attention to Guadagnino’s use of flies and the various colours worn by the characters because, as Breaking Bad has taught us, everything means something.

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[Credit: Sony Pictures/Mongrel Media]
Besides the obvious emotional components that make up Call Me By Your Name, it is remarkably funny. I found myself laughing more than I anticipated going into a film centered around lovers who will probably never be because thanks society. If the press circuit for the film has shown anything, it’s that Hammer and Chalamet genuinely care about each other and appreciates the talent one another brings to the film. It’s an absolute joy seeing them work together and, most importantly, their relationship feels like a true progression of a same-sex relationship between two compelling individuals. 

How Were The Other Aspects Of Call Me By Your Name?

The work of Sayombhu Mukdeeprom as cinematographer is nothing short of fantastic. Not a single frame is wasted in the film, every sequence is meticulously crafted by Guadagnino and his DP, taking the time to develop not only the characters but the various astounding landscapes present absolutely everywhere

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[Credit: Sony Pictures/Mongrel Media]
The soundtrack is also a vital aspect of the film that I’ve listened to on repeat since my watches as it contains the toe-tapping talents of The Psychedelic Furs, Loredana Bertè, Bandolero, Giorgio Moroder and Joe Esposito. The clip of Hammer dancing to The Furs’ “Love My Way” was how I originally found out about the film and the way the song is utilized is honestly one (or 2) of the major highlights of the film for me.

Sufjan Stevens composed two songs featured prominently in the film, “Visions of Gideon” and the Oscar nominated for Best Original Song, “Mystery Of Love.” I cannot wait for the upcoming Blu-Ray release so I can constantly remain in awe of everything about this masterpiece… Also for any Canadians out there, in certain sequences Chalamet looks identical to a young version of our current radiating specimen of a Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau. 

[Credit: Sony Pictures/Mongrel Media] | Made with Giphy

If you’re looking for a heartfelt, witty and aesthetically gorgeous drama featuring two phenomenal lead actors, check out Call Me By Your Name

Call Me By Your Name receives a coveted 5/5 Matt Damon heads.


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featured image credit: sony pictures/mongrel media

Rev Up Your Animated Engines! Armie Hammer Joins The Cast Of ‘Cars 3’ As The Villainous Jackson Storm

That name, Jackson Storm, just reeks of villainous! Prepare for the ultimate match between technologically-savvy millennial mobiles and cars going through midlife crises with Cars 3. The Social Network star, Armie Hammer will lend his beautiful baritone voice in the billion-dollar franchise as Jackson Storm– the most vocal head of this new wave of tech-savvy drivers.

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I am Alicia Vikander in the back, ‘The Man From UNCLE’ | Warner Bros.

Hammer Makes It Instagram Official

The handsome and talented father-of-one (soon to be two), Hammer took to his Instagram to make the exciting announcement about his involvement with the highly anticipated threequel. He mentions feeling excited to join the project and also warns about “all the trouble [Jackson] might cause Lightning McQueen!” Hammer has been married to television personality, Elizabeth Chambers since 2010.

Who Is Jackson Storm?

Credit: Disney/Pixar and Entertainment Weekly

According to Brian Fee, the first-time Pixar director for Cars 3 and storyboard artist on the first two Cars films:

“Jackson was born with a silver spoon in his mouth. Everything comes easy to him, and everything about him says he’s faster, so much so that we’ve designed him so that even when he’s standing next to [Lightning] McQueen, McQueen looks old.”

Jackson is lightyears ahead of our red-loving hero, Lightning McQueen and is a legitimate reflection of the actual years that have passed in the real world since our introduction to the first Cars in 2006. After more than a decade, shiny new rival roadster Jackson represents the peak of real-time innovation.

Check Out This Brief First Look Of Jackson Storm:

Cars 3 will put us back in the driver’s seat with Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) as he enlists the help of a technician friend to help him compete against the new generation of racers. It also stars the voices of Larry The Cable Guy, Bonnie Hunt and Cheech Marin and is set for release on June 16th, 2017.

Source: EW.

Are You Guys Looking Forward To Hearing Armie Hammer In The Third Installment Of Cars?

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Yes.. Yes he is | gif source:

For More Fun, Check Out:


The Birth Of A Nation (2016) Movie Review


If you’d like to feel terrible about humanity, watch a double billing of this film and 12 Years A Slave.. You’ll need an hour-long hug following it.

The Basic Premise

The Birth Of A Nation tells the incredible story of Nat Turner (Nate Parker), a real-life enslaved Preacher living in Virginia in 1831, who ultimately decided to rise up against the atrocities committed by slave owners.

My Thoughts On The Characters And Story

The Birth of a Nation will definitely make certain audiences incredibly uncomfortable. There are graphic scenes depicted about a subject matter that may cause discomfort for the general moviegoer… All that said, as a ridiculously huge fan of historical dramas myself I enjoyed watching Birth of a Nation albeit it felt a bit tedious to watch at times. I do appreciate the prospect of changing the meaning of this film’s title that is synonymous with D.W. Griffith’s 1915 silent film that portrayed the Ku Klux Klan as some type of heroic entity, saving us all from the scary and dangerous black people!

If you have three hours to spare, I recommend watching the entirety of Griffith’s film on the YouTube.
Be warned, many of those involved in the creation of that picture were entirely high on stupidity at the time but it is an important relic in film history.

The progression of Nat Turner’s life is executed nicely and a majority of the characters he encounters are intriguing. I understood the motivations various character had however it is pretty paint-by-numbers and there are moments & even dialogue you can easily predict if you’ve ever seen a Hollywood picture on slavery.

The transitions between stages of Nat’s life are abrupt at times and, being a film of historical relevance, I’m not sure why they wouldn’t implement just a quick reminder on the bottom of what year it was. This is a small nitpick but utilizing this technique could possibly make audiences appreciate the progression of the story.

I have to say though, watching Nat’s life in this 2 hour film was incredibly jarring yet mesmerizing, there are emotions this film evoked in me that I didn’t even know I had! I felt anger, disgust, immense rage and other synonyms that haven’t been invented yet for certain characters, particularly for Samuel Turner, portrayed fantastically by the almost-too-attractive-to-be-real Armie Hammer. His character played an enormous role in the film and Hammer was effective in the amount of screen time he had.

Hammer’s character had flaws and complexities to him however it would have been interesting for the development of Nat Turner to have explored their relationship a bit more. I did enjoy watching the dynamic between the two, Nat’s rather one-dimensional note of a character is enhanced because of those that surround him; Aja Naomi King portrays his wife, Cherry and I honestly felt Lupita Nyong’o in 12 Years A Slave vibes from her, she was incredible to watch.

How Were The Other Aspects Of The Film?

The Birth Of A Nation is a beautiful looking film, Nate Parker does a pretty great job with his directorial debut and I look forward to seeing what he directs in the future.

There are sequences where some of the most deplorable actions a human being can inflict on another human occur but I simply couldn’t look away because I was locked in with what was on screen. There are moments I literally felt my gut turning. I felt uneasy. I was unnerved. I held onto my soda for dear life and felt legitimate joy that I was only watching this. How individuals can suffer like this and hold on out of sheer necessity for life is a notion I don’t even want to fathom. There are one or two attempts, however, at blatant symbolism that made me think, “okay… I get it.”

The music utilized in the film is great, there is a haunting rendition of Billie Holiday’sStrange Fruit” by Nina Simone used that was one of my favourite scenes in the film. It was difficult to watch but the addition of that song made it all the more powerful.

If you’re looking for a drama about the progression of an individual during a time of immense struggle & hardship and have a few hours to spare, check out The Birth of a Nation.

The Birth Of A Nation (2016) receives 3.5/5 Matt Damon heads.

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sources used: [1], [2], [3], [4]