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 yet fragile German democracy. German Cinema’s Oscar Bid tells the story of the genesis of the most radical Terror Group of the 1970’s that of the Baader Meinhoff whose origin was indirectly linked to the Shah of Iran’s 1968 visit to West Berlin.
German Cinema has made a noticeable comback in recent years and won the Oscar for Best Foreign film for the LIFE OF OTHERS in 2007 which was also a depiction of an era in East German History that of the Stasi the secret services of Soviet Run East Germany.
It should be noted that Moritz Bleibtreu (who played Persian King Malik Shah in Kayvan Mashayekh’s The Keeper The Legend of Omar Khayyam ) plays Andreas Baader and Martina Gedeck ( who also played in LIFE OF OTHERS ) is cast as Ulrike Meinhof.
The film takes an uncompromising look on the most notoriously violent terrorist group of the 1970’s and the lost generation born from the very heart of Former Nazi Germany. Interestingly the film starts with the visit of Iran’s Royal Couple to West Berlin in 1967 which led to confrontation between Pro Shah Students and Left Wing Revolutionaries during which a German Student Benno Ohnesorg was killed by a German Policeman. This triggered what became known as West Germany’s Summer Revolution of 67 (France was to also see a similar Revolution a year later known as Mai ’68 but in reaction to General De Gaulle’s Presidency and generational crisis of the late 60’s). The film also explores the groupe’s trainings and activities in PLO Camps in the Middle East and the cultural gaps with their “Arab colleagues” that appear during their stay as well as the links between Baader Meinhof members and Islamic Fundamentalist Terror Groups of the time.
Official Website: The Baader Meinhof Complex
Journalist and mother of two children, Ulrike Meinhof, interviewed in 1970 Before Joining the Terror Group (She was the “Intellectual” who is said to have masterminded the political motivations behind the Terror acts)
Documentary Narrated by Ulrike Meinhof herself (Still a neutral journalist) on Shah’s visit and death of Benno Ohnesorg. (The incident made Meinhof to write a pamphlet entitled Open Letter to Farah Diba in which she slandered the Iranian Royalty of “being insensitive to the plight of the poor people of Iran” ):
Capture of Andreas Baader in Frankfurt 1972
Baader & Ensslin Firebombing and Trial
The Televised Trial was an oppurtunity for the Terrorist to Seduce the Media to their cause:
“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 yet fragile German democracy. The radicalised children of the Nazi generation lead by Andreas Baader, Ulrike Meinhof and Gudrun Ensslin 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. And while he succeeds in his relentless pursuit of the young terrorists, he knows he’s only dealing with the tip of the iceberg.”
Oscar Nominatations 2009.
Best Foreign Language Film.
BAFTA Nominations 2009.
FILM NOT IN THE ENGLISH LAN