There will be nothing terribly complex about “The Baader-Meinhof Complex”, which will be released in Germany on September 25th. For one thing, with the deadline for foreign-language Oscar submissions looming on October 1st, a number of countries will be revealing their choices for the competition next week. For another thing, the repeated re-examination of the traumatic home-grown terror era is something anyone familiar with the ritual has already seen many times before; superficially objective, this film will nevertheless be just another romanticized glorification of the left-wing heroes that never were.

The Baader-Meinhof group, also known as the RAF (Red Army Faction), is always a hot topic in Germany, particularly in former West Germany where the terrorists were active, and particularly among the “68er” or German baby boomer generation which swallowed the revolutionary rhetoric of that era hook, line and sinker. And that is why the film has attracted so much (too much) media attention over here already,

The German left has never put any convincing distance between the senseless violence committed by these criminally confused and the rose-tinted revolutionary romanticism that was and remains the defining delusional moment of their youth. And I just have to wonder at times, now that the 68er are effectively running the media and country, if this denial of theirs has not contributed to a certain head-in-the-sand blindness and the further denial, quite visible today, of the true danger of the terror of the here-and-now, less home-grown than it used to be perhaps, but all too real all the same.

No, I haven’t seen the film, nor will I need to. When Ulrike Meinhof’s daughter herself is disgusted by having to witness, once again, the veneration heaped upon these ever-modish Red Robin Hoods of yesteryear, that’s all I need to know. The makers of this film certainly won’t need my money at the box office. The Baader-Meinhof Complex is bound to be a smash hit here. And there’s certainly nothing complex about that, either.

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