COMMUNE is a film about Olympia, Washington, and was a gift to the denizens of that small city. It's a street-level exploration of the Olympia social commons?a shifting space that erupts on street corners and bubbles up from an underground well of potential. Through casual interviews with strangers, the film dives into the depths of desire and unveils new uses of the spaces Olympians all share. It was meant to be a looking glass, a lens, and a thief's gaze directed at Olympia's own terrible community.
A terrible community constitutes itself in opposition to an opponent and, in that opposition, closes in on itself and begins to rot. Olympia, once home to ELF cells, the diffuse network of Port Militarization Resistance, and a broad community of anarchists, has become little more than a stale, dusty closet, a cafe-to-show circuit, a green-washed, gentrifying haven of the left. In short, a terrible community. COMMUNE exposes that Olympia runs business as usual despite its high activist-per-capita ratio and radical reputation. But the film also reveals the existence of different communes, spreading on their own, outside of anarchist or radical circles.