Spoilers for the “peach scene” from Call Me By Your Name.
Luca Guadagnino’s Call Me By Your Name includes a scene featuring a peach that has audiences talking – but why? The movie is an adaptation of André Aciman’s 2007 novel of the same name about a young man named Elio (Timothée Chalamet) who falls in love with the older American student, Oliver (Armie Hammer), staying with his family for the summer in 1980s Italy. Reviews of Call Me By Your Name have been incredibly positive ever since it premiered at Sundance Film Festival earlier this year. Guadagnino’s latest has been generating a great deal of awards season buzz, with Hammer seeming to be in line for a Best Supporting Actor nomination at the 2018 Oscars.
Still, while Call Me By Your Name may be one of the more talked about projects of this year’s awards season, it only just premiered, and only in limited release – meaning it may not be available to every moviegoer interested in catching a showing. So, for those wondering about one particular aspect of Call Me By Your Name (or those looking to get the scoop before checking out the movie) – the much talked about peach scene – we’ve broken it down.
The scene originates in Aciman’s novel, and it features Elio pitting a fresh peach and using it to masturbate. While that part of the scene will no doubt evoke comparisons to American Pie’s infamous apple pie scene, Call Me By Your Name keeps going. After Elio finishes into the peach and places it aside, Oliver walks in and deduces what happened. In the book, he knowingly takes a bite of the peach, although the film stops just short.
Visceral as it may be, it’s an incredibly intimate moment in Elio and Oliver’s relationship and plays into the theme epitomized in the movie’s title of both men yearning to get as close to one another as possible – evidenced in the shot of Oliver saying, “Call me by your name and I’ll call you by mine,” in the Call Me By Your Name trailer.
Of course, the inclusion of the peach scene isn’t simply for its outrageousness or shock value. Like many other aspects of film and literature, it can be interpreted a number of ways – Guadagnino has discussed the scene as a metaphor for sexuality, while others have pointed to how it directly ties into the theme of intimacy throughout the movie. Certainly, there is an element of shock and surprise, but it’s still an important scene thematically and to the overall development of the main characters’ relationship. At the end of the day, the peach scene may be one of the more talked about parts of the film, but the relationship between Oliver and Elio is what has truly inspired all the buzz surrounding Call Me By Your Name.
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