Thomas Vinterberg, the leading Danish director, first rose to prominence in the 1990s as one of the protagonists of the hyper-realist Dogme 95 movement when his powerful, internationally acclaimed family melodrama The Celebration (1998) was the very first work to be released according to Dogme’s strict rules. Back in 1995, when Dogme’s “Vow of Chastity” was first devised, the manifesto forbid the creation of period pieces — all Dogme films were required to take place in the here and now. Twenty years later, Vinterberg has long since moved on from being an adherent of Dogme 95, and he now allows himself the freedom to make films however he so chooses—including the creation of period pieces, apparently — but he’s just as fascinated families and their surrogates as he ever was. With The Commune, Vinterberg has created a study of the social upheaval of the 1970s that focuses quite specifically on the idealism, the trials and triubulations,the betrayals, and the failures of a Copenhagen experiment in alternative living. It stars Ulrich Thomsen and Trine Dyrholm, who first gained international attention when they appeared in The Celebration, as Erik and Anna, the married couple who start The Commune, and Dyrholm in particular has been lauded for her performance, including a Best Actress award at the 2016 Berlinale.
-Anthony Kinik, Contributor