Why the Movie “Call Me By Your Name” Irritates Me
I’ve posted about Call Me By Your Name before, last January to be exact. First, it was a book written by a straight man with “homosexual” characters. Second, it’s not a gay movie but the marketing people are claiming it’s the next “gay classic” and the next Brokeback Mountain. And that bothers me for reasons that should be obvious: just make the distinction clear. That’s all.
Call Me By Your Name may very well be a stellar film and book. In fact, I might be the best film ever made in Hollywood…for what it is. It might be getting excellent reviews. It might be a retro film with “homosexual” content, and it might be a romantic drama. But it’s not a gay romance and it’s not a classic gay movie. And I think that distinction should be made clear, up front. If for no other reason, to send a message to the wonderful gay young people who are coming out sooner now, and who need books and movies with which they can identify.
Wiki says this:
Oliver is also Jewish, as he is himself, and this idea of another kind of bond between them, i.e. their Jewishness, excites him. However, despite his recognition of his own bisexuality and sexual desire for Oliver, Elio doubts that someone with such a carefree, laid-back attitude as Oliver could be interested in him.
That’s not a gay movie, and that’s not a gay classic.
Here’s a spoiler, so you’ve been warned: they don’t live happily ever after; not a romance.
And here’s a link to the post I wrote earlier about this movie, where I posted a few comments from other gay people, verbatim. Here’s one comment…
There’s nothing “gay” in the book. It’s about two straight men feeling sexual attraction for each other. The younger character make fun of gay people in the book. In the second part of the book they chase women together.
But that’s not how Call Me By Your Name is being marketed and promoted. And unfortunately not everyone knows enough about gay men or gay culture to make the distinction.
Again, this might be the best movie since Gone With the Wind, however, marketing it this way is a homophobic, insulting way to treat gay men and gay culture. And I’m tired of reading that books and films from a heteronormative POV like Brokeback Mountain are gay classics. The movie Making Love is a gay classic.
This is why Trump gets away with what he does, especially with his awful homophobic tweets about the transgender ban in the military. Not enough people speak up about it…or know the difference.
But I have a feeling this will all fall on deaf ears.
The Sickness of Gay Conversion Therapy
It’s hard to believe this is still happening, but not so hard to believe if you were reading some of the comments on social media about Trump’s transgender ban in the military. I actually argued with more than a few people who couldn’t come up with a viable argument in favor of Trump’s ban. Every single comment was a hooded, antiquated, concept of being transgender. And I’m not even transgender and I know these these things.
In any event, this is horrible…
“My hands were bound, placed in ice and pictures of men touching other men, holding hands, were shown,” Brinton explained. “I was supposed to associate the cold I was feeling with the image that I was seeing.”
When that didn’t work, Brinton said, his captures tried using heat.
“Wires were wrapped around my hands. Heat was applied when pictures of men touching men were shown and turned off when pictures of women touching women were shown.”
Here’s the rest. We all need to start speaking up more about these things.
More Comments From Gay Men About Call Me By Your Name
While I was writing the first part of this post, I had no idea I would be linking to something in a gay press about Call Me By Your Name. But I’m not going to focus on the article itself here. It’s more fake marketing and promotion.
I will focus on the comments. At least I feel somewhat validated.
That’s hardly an appealing comparison considering neither the novel nor film was a “love story”. The leading characters were presented an obsessive, deranged pedo and a megalomaniac nympho.
Here’s another comment…
It is what it is. It’s disappointing that almost every high-profile “gay movie” either involves a couple with a decent and somewhat concerning age and maturity difference and/or is about “confused” individuals in the midst of “passionate love”. And they of course always star hetero-identifying actors. As I said, it is what it is. The industry doesn’t seem interested in homo relationships, especially men, beyond these tropes.
You can check them out here. I think the article itself is another advertorial promoting the movie, but I’m not totally sure about that. There are more comments, and I left one, too.
I think what bothers me the most is that this won’t be the last movie (or book) like this.