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Baader Meinhof Complex [Blu-ray]
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Germany in the 1970s: Murderous bomb attacks, the threat of terrorism and the fear of the enemy inside are rocking the very foundations of the still fragile German democracy. The radicalized children of the Nazi generation led by Andreas Baader (Moritz Bleibtreu), Ulrike Meinhof (Martina Gedeck) and Gudrun Ensslin (Johanna Wokalek) are fighting a violent war against what they perceive as the new face of fascism: American imperialism supported by the German establishment, many of whom have a Nazi past.Their aim is to create a more human society but by employing inhuman means they not only spread terror and bloodshed, they also lose their own humanity. The man who understands them is also their hunter: the head of the German police force, Horst Herold (Bruno Ganz). And while he succeeds in his relentless pursuit of the young terrorists, he knows he's only dealing with the tip of the iceberg.
Germany in the 1970s: Murderous bomb attacks, the threat of terrorism and the fear of the enemy inside are rocking the very foundations of the still fragile German democracy. The radicalized children of the Nazi generation lead by Andreas Baader (Moritz Bleibtreu), and Ulrike Meinhof (Martina Gedeck) and Gudrun Ensslin (Johanna Wokalek) are fighting a violent war against what they perceive as the new face of fascism: American imperialism supported by the German establishment. Their aim is to create a more human society but by employing inhuman means they not only spread terror and bloodshed, they also lose their own humanity. --This text refers to the DVD edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
The film is superbly acted, with standout performances by Moritz Bleibtreu, Martina Gedeck, Johanna Wokalek and Bruno Ganz. It is, in the end, a tale that explores disillusionment with the status quo and how efforts to fight for greater freedom and liberty can become twisted into terror and murder. This is a violent film, yet it makes for compelling viewing - especially knowing that it's based on actual events.
This movie is in German, with English subtitles. If you enjoy it, I also recommend The Lives of Others [DVD] .
The post 45 children raised in austerity and penance finally burst into 60's affluence with the ever present fear of the Nazi return. The beginning of the film shows the unthinking state attacking its own students, to keep the Shah Reza Pahlei of Persia on his wobbling throne. He replaced the democratically elected Prime Minister Mohammad Mosaddegh who wanted to nationalise the oil industry in 1953. The Brits under Churchill and the Americans led by Eisenhower organised the coup and his removal. Democracy was snuffed out in the middle east until the invasion of Iraq "restored" it again.
Machinations of the USA war machine in Vietnam, manufacturing the Tomkin Bay incident to instigate a rationale for a war with a backward 3rd world country. This led to the pouring of American resources into Indo China to stop dominoes from tumbling down.
All to keep the world safe, biological weapons (Rats innoculated with rabies) and chemical weapons (Napalm, Agent Orange) were poured into holes and jungles to make the country safer for democracy. Trouble is the Vietnamese already had their national elections cancelled by the Americans fearing a northern victory and reunion. The southern leaders were appointees, whose tenures were variously ended ended by CIA "advisers" and then again in a coup.
The displaced Palestinians were ringed into their reservations whilst the iron grip on their lives forced them into further poverty and fury of revenge attacks.Read more ›
As for the violence, the Baader-Meinhof 'gang' was extremely violent so there is some justification. It is an '18' rated film - 'Contains very strong language and strong bloody violence'. And there is plenty of both. Loads of blood - some in slow motion.
Well, is it any good? Yes, it is. It's nearly two and half hours long, but it's pretty riveting throughout. The opening scenes give you a very quick and graphic metaphor for the origins of the RAF (Red Army Faction). A demonstration by opponents of the Shah of Iran is split up by Iranian supporters of the Shah, supported by the police. Horrified protestors scatter and a student is shot dead. The German establishment is seen to be hand-in-glove with repressive regimes. Student demonstrations follow with the attempted murder of Rudi Dutschke, and the RAF is born.
After this shocking start, your sympathies are inevitably with the nascent RAF as, it appears, a large proportion of German youth was, too. This is the generation of the baby-boomers (including Uli Edel, the director, born 1947), coming up against the generation that lived through the Second World War. Dope smoking nudists, squats and communes and all the other hippy paraphernalia mixed with automatic weapons develops into a dangerous band of bank robbers with Arab terrorist links - an uneasy alliance as Andreas Baader complains that crawling through deserts is not great training for raiding banks and kidnapping industrialists, and young Arab recruits ogle Gudrun Ensslin and friends nude sun bathing on the roof of their barracks.
We know the history, we know what happens.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very rarely do I watch films with subtitles because as many know the time you read the translation, the film has moved on 20 frames. Read morePublished 7 months ago by P. WILLIAMS
This 2008 historical drama concentrates on the what the press called the Baader-Meinhoff Group, which marked the formative and early years [first generation] of the West... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Throda tzen
Severely disappointed with the product. Subtitles are awful. Feel like I've been duped.Published 11 months ago by pairick j dorrian
A very well made, acted, exciting and thought provoking film, that brings to light a time in European history that is little discussed within the modern media. Read morePublished 12 months ago by douglas johnstone
Well acted and directed, it really captures the flavour of the period.Published 13 months ago by Gastronaut