DER Documentary

The Collective: Fifteen Years Later


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by Richard Broadman
b&w, 60 min, 1985




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In 1970, thousands of young people thought of themselves as agents of change. They wanted to restore America's democratic vision; they wanted to end the war in Vietnam. This is the story of one collective — their successes and failures, and what they do and think fifteen years later.

The Collective is a consistently absorbing document that evenhandedly and compassionately embraces the paradoxes, contradictions, idealism and just plain nuttiness that the survivors ruefully recall — there's a lot of emotional and psychic history written on the lived-in faces in The Collective. Its intimate scale and introspective tone double its impact.” — Jay Carr, The Boston Globe
“[The Collective] focuses on these activists' political ideals, and on how the decision to be "revolutionaries" altered their lives... The recollections of the seven interviewees, show mostly in close-up, are sober, self-critical and illuminating. Today, the documentary's subjects aren't occupying buildings any more but most have remained activists — in tenant's groups, community organizations and the like. Curiously, but perhaps fittingly, these radicals who were once reviled for opposing the American way have become models of concerned citizenry.” — Scott Rosenber, Boston Phoenix

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