I Am Love: A film by Luca Guadagdino (2009)  » Movies  »
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  • I rely heavily on movie reviews, as I prefer to see titles released under the radar
  • The title didn’t strike me as interesting at first (it sounds romantic), but the trailer completely changed my preconceptions about the film
  • I believe it also strives to weigh in the worth of material wealth against love, or honest affection


    • by jhunie

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      I watched this film upon the recommendation of one of nytimes film critics. I rely heavily on movie reviews, as I prefer to see titles released under the radar. It was a long wait for this film to be released in DVD version, and I had to be patient until it’s translated into English. “I Am Love” is an Italian film and its working title, originally, was Io Sono L’amore. The title didn’t strike me as interesting at first (it sounds romantic), but the trailer completely changed my preconceptions about the film. It looked like it possessed good elements of a fine film, and the picture was endearingly rich in style, as well as its subject. And that impression carried me through to the end of the film.

      The text at the opening credits of the film reminded me of old-hollywood chick flicks. It’s


      all written in cursive font and the chic music paints a sense of formality to the beginning of the film. Half of the film puts the audience in front of a portrait of a family and their luxurious lifestyle that could only be called as very ‘la dolce vita.’ At the center of the movie is Emma, who is played by Tilda Swinton, and the wife of a wealthy man. This movie certainly stressed the lifestyle of the rich, in which the characters immerse themselves: good food, fine art, lavish dinners, and formal parties. And Emma seems to be searching for meaning, perhaps about the kind of life that they live, or beyond that.

      This is such a beautiful movie. Though its meaning is pretty much narrowed down to one thing, and that’s love. It doesn’t provoke the mind of the audience about morality, or anything ...


      • of that sort. The director, Luca Guadagnino, created a very passionate work of art. I believe it also strives to weigh in the worth of material wealth against love, or honest affection. As in the case of Emma, she lives a very privileged life. Her character doesn’t say much about that, but her elegant manner of dressing (fendi and jil sander???) and the life she lives, in general, make her a beautiful slave to wealth. Her life is empty. Tilda Swinton’s performance was very graceful. She embodies that character so well, and her acting here is very disciplined, though less visceral.

        The movie easily fits into the ‘art film’ category, or does it? Although, I felt that some of the scenes (erotic ones, in particular) were overplayed, and the colors appeared very vivid to the point that they look garish and not organic

        (nature was superimposed in a few parts of the film). Most films with this much beauty and sex struggle from getting recognition because they’re easily filed under the indie-porn category. The nude scenes really surprised me too, and I was glad it had no voyeuristic appeal. It apparently showed fine craft in film making. The film also presented new techniques in storytelling, such as depicting the subconscious desires of the character in a dreamy portrayal, and more so in reeling the camera; the film was pretty much all about capturing beauty, even in death and loneliness.

        One thing I failed to understand was the death of Edo. But it was a turning point in Emma’s life to make a decision, either to get by or risk her marriage for an affair. If you want to see something more artful than desperate housewives, this is the movie to watch.




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