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Antonia: Italy has (finally) found its Fleabag

Watching Antonia, the new Prime Video dramedy immediately comes to mind Fleabag not only for the refined packaging, but also for the irresistible irony of a protagonist who moves tightrope walking between pain and laughter. Unlike its English cousin, however, Antonia it has an edge because Chiara Martegiani, who wrote and starred in the series, chose to start from something he knew well which effectively gave rise to the narrative of this somewhat disjointed character who tries to understand in which direction to go. That very personal something that Martegiani learned at his expense is endometriosisa chronic illness that put both her and Antonia in front of what seemed like an unappealable sentence: have a child now or never do it again. It is from this ultimatum that the series begins to weave its plots, but if you think you will find drama you are sadly mistaken.

Valerio Mastandrea and Chiara Martegiani

In Antonia we laugh, and a lot. Thanks to a series of paradoxical situations that cannot help but make us feel sympathy for the protagonist and, above all, for six-handed writing – those of Martegiani, of Elisa Casseri and Carlotta Corradi – able to touch all the sensitive points of those who are thirty years old and must understand how to manage that internal crisis which seems to cause all the certainties we have counted on to suddenly fall like a house of cards. At the center of everything is her: Antonia, a soap actress forced to rely on a manager completely disconnected from reality who, once the disease is discovered, is called upon to make a series of choices that she would have liked to delay as much as possible. On the one hand there is Manfredi, the companion played by Valerio Mastandrea who never seems to understand it enough, and on the other hand there are both the pain of those who had to start from scratch in a city like Rome than a microcosm of more or less singular characters who will help Antonia understand what she really wants.

Antonia Italia has found her Fleabag

Between analysis sessions, chairs to fill, thought-busting drumswishes to express in front of a birthday cake, voice messages shouted inside an Atac bus and Z series sets in which costume designers do their best to erase traces of blood from a cool wool suit, Antonia it's a breath of fresh air like few others come across, and the credit goes entirely to Chiara Martegiani, an actress who shone in He laughs, Mastandrea's beautiful debut film, in a very intense and dramatic role which he shows he possesses here an ironic figure and partly cynical – it emerges every time she calls her friend because she needs something, ignoring the unfortunate woman's thousand problems – which we feel we can no longer do without. The series, directed by Chiara Maltais a Fidelio e production Greenland (a Banijay Group company) in collaboration with Prime Video and Rai Fiction.

Source: Vanity Fair

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