RuPaul thinks Michael Stuhlbarg was robbed of his Oscar nomination for “Call Me by Your Name,” and Timothée Chalamet deserves to win. As if you needed more reasons to love the “Drag Race” host, RuPaul is also a devoted cinephile, with tastes ranging from “Dunkirk” to “The Florida Project.” Although he’s currently attending Sundance for a “Drag Race” retrospective, and serving as the sole juror for the festival’s NEXT section, he spent his time prior to Park City catching up on Oscar season movies. And “Call Me by Your Name” was his favorite by far.
“It’s so beautiful. I loved it so much,” RuPaul told IndieWire in a phone interview. “That last scene in the movie, it just tears me apart,” he added, referring to the final shot when the credits roll on teen Elio staring into the fire, tears rolling down his face. Though RuPaul was confused about how to pronounce the actor’s name, the TV personality had no problem singing Chalamet’s praises. “I hope he gets the Oscar. I hope he does,” he said. “Beautiful, beautifully done.”
For RuPaul, the most crucial scene in “Call Me by Your Name” was when Elio’s father, played by Michael Stuhlbarg, comforts him after his heartache. The speech almost directly mirrors the one in Andre Aciman’s novel on which the movie is based. Stuhlbarg is so delicate in his emotion, with such force beneath the surface, that the entire movie seems to rest on his delivery.
Stuhlbarg was shut out of the Oscar race for Best Supporting actor, an oversight that baffled many, including RuPaul. “The movie is all about that scene with the father,” he said. “I wish that he had gotten nominated for an Oscar. That Michael Stuhlbarg, since ‘A Serious Man’ he’s been in every single movie that’s ever been produced. He is amazing, and that scene with him at the end of the movie is perfection. That’s what it’s all about, that’s what the whole movie is all about. So gorgeous.”
When asked whether he thought Mr. Pearlman is hinting that he once experienced same-sex attraction in that moment, RuPaul thought, “It was left for the viewer to decide,” but had his own opinions. “Maybe he had, maybe he hadn’t, maybe he had unrequited,” RuPaul said. “I think it was important to not be specific, so that you could underline and emphasize the feeling over was he or was he not. I think it was more important that [director Luca Guadagnino] left it ambiguous. I thought that was very smart.”
“Call Me by Your Name” isn’t the only Oscar-nominated movie RuPaul loved last year. He also mentioned “Get Out” and “Lady Bird” as favorites. “I hope Laurie Metcalf gets it,” he said, referring to the “Lady Bird” nominee for best supporting actress. “She so deserves it. Her performance is exquisite.” He also expressed regret that “The Florida Project” was passed over for a Best Picture nod. (“That was beautiful,” he said of the film.)
Another surprise was “Dunkirk,” not the kind of movie RuPaul usually chases down. “It was the movie that I wasn’t attracted to seeing, because I sort of thought, ‘Oh, a war picture,'” he said. “But then when I saw it on the airplane last week, I got it, and it’s so beautiful. It is so fabulous what [director Christopher Nolan] did.”
Season Three of “RuPaul’s Drag Race: All Stars” premieres January 25 on VH1.