Mystery of Love



I've been a little obsessed watching clips after clips on youtube on the movie Call Me By Your Name. I don't think I would get a chance to watch it in whole in the movie theatres here in conservative Singapore because well, there is gay and sexual content.

The movie premise was set in the early 1980s taking place one Italian summer. A tall and handsome American graduate named Oliver, and in his early twenties, had come to the Italian villa of his professor as an intern for his research projects for 6 weeks. It was also during this vacation that he had also developed a short but memorable summer love between him and the teenage son of the professor, a book lover & music prodigy.

He was the object of desire of many young women in the Italian village, including Elio, who had to vacate his bedroom as he always did every summer, whenever his father had an intern coming over. While Elio did not show his desire for Oliver immediately, having a French girlfriend himself, he slowly developed feelings that he could not understand at first, but which he expressed through his own physical intimacy the more he spent time with Oliver.

Oliver was a smart young man who was being shown around in the Italian village voluntarily by Elio and it was the time spent between the two men that they became closer despite the differences in their outlook in life. Elio being a more typical bashful and emo teenager while Oliver had a more outgoing yet charming personality, just wanting to spend his best Summer vacation here in Italy.

While both men had keen interest with certain women in the village, there was no deny that both were quickly drawn to each other though they tried to repress the feelings and not pursue their desires. Though they did not fall in love with each other immediately, the connection became stronger with Elio blurting out that he wanted to be with Oliver and Oliver telling Elio that he could kiss him if he could.

However, Oliver also felt that they should not pursue their feelings for each other any further, even though he desired for Elio as much as Elio desired for him when they were both chilling on the grass after a little water play at a lake. At one point, they grew apart when both had differing views in showing their affection when Elio wanted to pursue more. But it wasn't for long though as they couldn't stand to be apart, leaving each other little notes, and leading to Elio approaching Oliver at the patio after receiving the note to meet him at midnight in his room. It was there that they finally gave in and started a passionate affair, which sadly, came to an end when Oliver had to leave for America after his 6 weeks stay was over.

So this movie was about finding a love so rare, that even though it was short-lived, it could alter one's live forever as they cherished this given opportunity to love and be loved. It is also about discovering the feelings invoked by first love. And that love knows no boundaries and would only become stronger over time. Love also shows that two people, irregardless of their differences, can develop strong feelings, as they forge a deep connection of undeniable and unexplainable desire.

Though I've mentioned that I had not watched the movie, I did watch montage clips, that showcased how their love started from the friendship they developed as they toured around the village and spent a lot of time with each other, doing things like cycling, swimming and even dancing at a party. The actors portrayed the roles really well. We see Elio's vulnerability when he sees Oliver taking a fancy of one of the local girls, giving longing looks and sneaking glances, his reactions upon almost being found out doing something, how he initially concealed his growing feelings towards Oliver in a nonchalant way up to a point he had to blurt out he wanted to be with him. Then he started to open up  a little more to Oliver, wanting to kiss him, hold his hand and hug him even though he was quite aloof with him at first.

I think I liked the Midnight scene where he was all shy and nervous but at the same time, clinging on to Oliver, wanting him so badly when Oliver was being a little doubtful..before both of them gave in to passion. Oliver was also not quite the typical tall and handsome man. He cut through Elio's aloofness with his smart choice of words and zest for life. But he was also careful with Elio's feelings, initially not wanting to give him false hope when he found out how Elio felt about him and how he later felt the same way too.

But both of them still pursued their desires, even if they knew their time with each other, and also their love, would be short-lived. Knowing this, they took this opportunity to spend as much time as possible with each other and even taking a short vacation together. However, they could not avoid the dawn of realisation that this would be the final moments they get to be together before Oliver had to leave and it was really heartbreaking. Nothing was as heartbreaking when the two shared their goodbyes in no spoken words but merely hugging each other tightly, while controlling their emotions, and nodding to acknowledge their final goodbyes before Oliver went up the train carriage.

If I were to watch this movie, I would probably cry uncontrollably as I weeped with Elio when he broke down and cry when asking his mum to fetch him and later crying in the car. Also, I could have watched their words and actions leading to them falling in love with each other.

Of course one of the highlights and most romantic thing everrrr said..was when Oliver uttered 'Call me by your name and I'll call you by mine' in bed after they consummate their relationship. It could mean a few things but I think it just means you're mine and I'm yours.

When Elio was being emotional, his father offered some advise while letting him know that he knew what was going on between him and Oliver and that he sympathised with him. He too had a summer relationship like him with his friend back in his younger days and that Elio should actually find pleasure in his grief since the true love they shared with each other is rare.

It wasn't a tragic love story and even though Oliver had moved on with his life when he called Elio few months later to say that he was getting married, them calling each other by their names meant that the love they had shared stayed with them forever. 

The movie and the actors deserved award accolades and the young lead actor had such great talent by truly embodied his character fully through his expressions and emotions. 

This is not a movie review though because it wouldn't be fair to review without watching. However, if you get to watch the movie, I would recommend it. And to note that love can have cunning ways of finding its way into your heart even if you can't understand it at first. That when you finally embrace it, love can give you a roller coaster of emotions and change your life forever. This is the mystery of love.

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