La Commune (Paris 1871)
In March of 1871, a civil war was raging in Paris. Workers and revolutionaries of the 11th arrondissement founded the Paris Commune with the aim of initiating social reforms, democratic participation, and the enhancement of living conditions. Peter Watkin’s film “La Commune (Paris 1871)” (FR 1999, 345 min) combines the re-enactment of this until today disregarded key event in the struggle of the 19th-century European workers with current themes and a critique of the mass media: 200 actors and actresses dressed in period costumes lead a debate on the model of the Commune and present society, globalisation, xenophobia and audiovisual standardisation. During the unconventional process of the film, a collective practice, which is pursued until today in the form of the association Rebond pour la Commune, unfolds. The increasing marginalisation of film projects such as “La Commune (Paris 1871)” by the culture industry led to Rebond becoming the founding member of the cooperative co-errances, in which publishers, film and cultural producers collaborate. As an alternative to the market-oriented, monopolising culture industry, co-errances pursues the method of autonomously producing and distributing contents.