DMovies - Your platform for thought-provoking cinema

The Commune (Kollektivet)

Director - Thomas Vinterberg - 2016

"Mostly clean movie"
Bored of living with your family in a large empty house? Then invite a bunch of people to move in and turn it into a commune

Boredom will inevitably creep into your marriage if you live in a three-story house alone with your spouse and your teenage daughter. The solution is to invite a number of friends, acquaintances and even strangers to move in. They come complete with a cardiac child bragging that he will die before nine, a constantly weeping immigrant who speaks broken Danish and, why not, your partner’s younger lover? Tediousness is guaranteed to be replaced by infighting and despair.

Erik (Ulrich Thomsen) lives with his wife of 25 years Ana (Trine Dyrholm) in Copenhagen. He is a architecture professor and she is a news anchor in Cophenhagen in the 1970s. It was a romantic time when commune living became commonplace across Scandinavian countries, partly as a social statement against capitalism, partly as a political statement against war and dictatorships abroad. Swedish film Together (Lukas Moodysson, 2000) portrayed a similar arrangement, and Vinterberg himself lived in a commune as a child.

The commune is soon vivid and livid, with heated arguments, crying and sadness invading the lives of the people in the house. Constant “house meetings” culminate in detailed sex revelations and mutual accusations, in scenes very similar to Vinterberg’s The Celebration (1998).

While the film is a powerful reminder of the obscene and comfort in which our society lives, and how we never bother to engage with those surrounding us, it fails in many other aspects. It is not as politically-charged and gripping as Together and it does not have the aesthetic and innovative cinema appeal of The Celebration (the first film of the groundbreaking and influential Dogme 95 Movement) .

The Commune also lacks universal appeal and currentness. The commune feels like a romantic and foolish endeavour confined to a somewhat distant past and to a remote country. While emotionally effective, the film fails to link in any way with the present situation of Syrian refugees in Europe. Last year, when the film was being made, many Europeans were opening their own large houses to those fleeing war in the Middle East. Even the Finnish Prime Minister opened his large house to Syrians. Perhaps unwillingly, Vinterberg leaves the impression that this solution is too idealistic and therefore unfeasible.

The film premiered 66th Berlinale in February, and DMovies was live at the event. It is now out in cinemas.

Watch the film trailer below:



"Mostly clean movie"

By Victor Fraga - 17-02-2016

By Victor Fraga - 17-02-2016

Victor Fraga is a Brazilian born and London-based writer with more than 15 years...

DMovies Poll

Should smoking in cinema be banned?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Most Read

Pigs might fly. And so Brexit might happen. [Read More...]
Thousands of reviews, opinion pieces, YouTube videos, blog [Read More...]
Perhaps no other 20th century artist has captured [Read More...]
Another year has gone by, and DMovies is [Read More...]
The British and the French have joined efforts! [Read More...]
The past 12 months saw three major British [Read More...]

Read More

Lover for a Day (L’Amant d’un Jour)

Philippe Garrel
2018

Alasdair Bayman - 18-01-2018

L'amour goes black and white: Philippe Garrel's latest drama is a monochrome piece of artistry about two women of the same age and the nature of love - now on MUBI [Read More...]

The Post

Steven Spielberg
2017

Jeremy Clarke - 17-01-2018

The White House versus the press. Set in the 1970s, Steven Spielberg’s journalistic epic tells the story of The Washington Post and the Pentagon Papers – in cinemas from Friday [Read More...]

The Final Year

Greg Baker
2018

Victor Fraga - 17-01-2018

Fired up, ready to go? Documentary about Obama's last year in office provides a fascinating peek into the lives of the then president and his associates, and reflects whether the message of "hope" can survive the current tenure; sadly the film also lacks a little balance - in cinemas [Read More...]

Facebook Comment

Website Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *