Call Me By Your Name’s Peach Scene Is Deeper Than You Think

“In the book, Oliver eats the peach,” André Aciman explained. “And he says, ‘because I want every part of you. If you’re going to die, I want part of you to stay with me in my system, and that’s the way I’m going to do it.’ So it is a very powerful moment.”

Though Oliver only teases Elio in the film version of “Call Me By Your Name,” suggesting very emphatically and convincingly that he will eat the peach, he actually does bite into the peach in the novel, making the scene far more shocking than its cinematic counterpart. “In the film, he just puts his finger [into it] and almost licks it, and that is good enough for cinema,” Aciman went on. “We don’t need to see more.” 

The “Call Me By Your Name” author also dove into what the scene means to the two central characters. As the scene progresses, Elio and Oliver briefly struggle, and Aciman went into the import of this: “At some point, Elio will say, ‘You’re hurting me.’ And [Oliver] says, ‘Let go then’ … at which point, Elio just breaks down and cries, and he says, ‘I don’t want you to go.’ … It takes a very physical, almost lusty, moment and finds its emotional equivalent right away.”

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