In “Stuck Together“, residents of a rented building in Paris build relationships with their husbands, children and neighbours. Under the pressure of a pandemic blockade that exposes the truth, half-truths, and complete ignorance about covid. As a 10-year-old narrator, he describes everything he loves about his father, Tony (Francois Damien).
It became clear that the father was a racist who had abandoned his much wiser wife. Tony, the owner of other buildings and businesses, can’t make decisions without offending someone or a group. We understand that his wonderful son is learning to be like a father. But the tenant is just as terrible in its way. The rush to reach a racist conclusion seems built.
During the day, the new “North African tenant” lives among himself:
Because other tenants complain that he violates pandemic restrictions every night, Samuel (Tom Leeb). In a live broadcast, an online fitness trainer urges his pregnant wife Agatha (Alison Wheeler) out of their small apartment. So his followers won’t know he’s married.
Martin (Danny Boone, also the film’s director) furiously sprays hand sanitiser in his mouth. And is constantly panicking from the invisible germs everywhere. When Claire (Lawrence Arn), his wife’s attorney, visits a client in prison, he doesn’t let her return to his apartment.
Still, it’s a really great idea to let your daughter play outside with the boy next door. And it’s a good idea to stay a few inches away from others in the building. The owner of a closed bar sells his firm pears as a hand sanitiser to survive. While house cleaner Paolo (Jorge Calvo) worries for his wife for weeks in hospital with Covid.
Sticking together is a strident attempt to find the hidden good in people by ridiculing the ugly. Humour borders on idiots and represents a starting point for humanity. As a group of selfish, uninformed, racist, misogynistic and abusive people.
The film tries unconvincingly to show that crises have made people worse and better. The problem lies in the significant transitions from disgusting to polite, from idiotic to intelligent, hostile to friendly, exclusive to huggable. Some of the characters considered subservient are entirely unfounded. Nothing we see can turn a macho racist misogynist into a simple example of acceptance and kindness.
What’s worse is that there are really no surprises over here.
Thus it’s very clear from the start that the mysterious new tenant from North Africa. Whom everyone suspects have made a mistake, will be the most heroic of them all. Sometimes the writer-director doesn’t even know the characters themselves. A retired criminal defence attorney “admits” that he wasn’t firm.
Because a reckless criminal client fired him, and his boss, the lawbreaker’s uncle, was furious with him. Her insistence that these events reveal flaws in her character is as ridiculous. As offensive and implies that competent professional women are being crushed and blamed for misbehaving towards others. Rarely touching moments, that are too few and too late, cannot make up for this.
One of the best things about Stuck Together is that they don’t bother pointing out. That they don’t always get along, even if they’re neighbours or friends. The film is interested in how people’s perceptions change due to a crisis. And how people are separated from the tension of being stuck together for a long time. Actors can display a really wide variety of emotions, from joy to sadness to anger and vice versa. They also have great chemistry with each other. Which makes them feel trapped in this situation together for a long time. Even before the film starts.