After AntiChrist I should have watched a tried and true, like Halloween or Dawn of the Dead, just to get my horror bearings. Instead I watched The Commune, written and directed by a pretty cool chick named Elisabeth Fies. Seems like a few months ago every horror blogger was talking about this film like it was the second coming. Being behind on the times as usual I did not see it until now. Although many things about The Commune are impressive, especially the cinematography and the lead performance by Chauntal Lewis, on the whole the film was a big disappointment. Fies has a lot of interesting ideas, and she had made a beautiful film, but the parts don't add up to a whole. 15 going on 16 Jenny (Lewis, way too old to play a 15 year old) is forced to spend the summer with her hippie father, who runs a Commune in Sonoma County. Jenny is from San Jose, and she dislikes all things tofu and patchouli. Yes, I live near San Jose and I am from Sonoma County, so my journey is like Jenny's in reverse, without all the rape and incest. Yes, The Commune is one of those movies.
The actual Commune itself is not so bad. It looks like a wine country spa. I really wouldn't mind spending a few days there except for the fact that everyone at the Commune (there are like 10 people ) is a total asshole, especially Jenny's father, who really likes to masturbate. Jenny escapes to the local town where she meets Puck, a rocker guy who tries to help her escape. The third act of this film is great. The big shock and reveal I sort of saw coming, especially since Jenny's horrible fate is hinted at in the beginning of the film, but it still works. Unfortunately acts one and two are real snooze fests. I had to stop myself from fast forwarding, especially when someone else besides Lewis was trying to act. I wanted to like The Commune. I like the idea behind it, but the film just did not live up to expectations. Still, it is better than AntiChrist.
On another note, I read that actress Chauntal Lewis lost her left hand in an accident after this film was made. Fies is already writing a role for her in her next film, as a kick ass spy. That is something I can look forward to!