I do not know if I Stay Home, or Io Resto A Casa in its native Italian, will have the same immediacy and impact in 5-years when the global COVID-19 pandemic is a memory of hardships persevered through. But, now, in the middle of it, this documentary is a captivating (almost) hour-long look at Italy during its nationwide lockdown. Directed and edited by Paolo Casalis, using segments filmed by various people, the whole affair is quite intimate yet epic in scope.
The first person we meet is YouTuber Missgerberina. She talks about how the teachers at her kid’s school are fantastic and have set-up virtual classrooms for the students to engage with and learn. She also describes how, when she has to leave, she tries only to be gone for a brief period, as she does not want to bring her 7-year-old out unless 100% necessary.
“…a captivating (almost) hour-long look at Italy during its nationwide lockdown.”
Robertina is a mom out to get groceries. She films the very picked over shelves, describing how certain items, such as lettuce, that they are out of entirely. But, she was able to get a decent number of supplies. Then we are introduced to Veronica Pinelli, who is given the title of “presidentessa” and nothing else. Using Google Translate, make of that what you will, it would seem the word translates to chairwoman. So, is she the president of some club or organization in Rome? Or is that just part of her online persona a la Diamanda Hagan?
There is simply not enough information given to know. Which is kind of odd, given that for everyone else, ages, main jobs, and hobbies are detailed for the audience. But, style hiccup aside, no matter who or what she may be, Veronica is energetic and crazy, in a fun way. She talks directly about how wonderful it is that everyone is self-isolating so well and congratulates the entirety of Italy on a robust prompt response. Veronica then chastises some of the poor behavior, such as extreme hoarding, that a few select individuals have shown during the crisis.
Silvio is a 31-year-old architect who adores his cat. He hosts some building tutorials online while cooped up. YouTuber Stay Serena is a student filming from inside her car. She wants everyone to know that while she is all about fun, this is the time to be serious. To that end, she’s begging people to stay home unless they absolutely must leave.
"…comes across as hopeful and even a bit fun."