A film that tells the story of a group of left wing militants who terrorised the former West Germany in the 1970s and 80s has had its premiere in Munich. The movie is based on the bestselling book The Baader Meinhof Complex by Stefan Aust.
The documentary-style thriller is a graphic account of the rise and fall of what was known as the Red Army Faction.
Director Uli Edel said: “I have made this movie for my sons and I wanted to tell the story so they can judge what happened in those times, and what I have experienced as a contemporary witness.”
The film is the result of years of research, making sure that scenes are recreated as accurately as possible. The romantic relationship between the group’s founder, Andreas Baader, and another main member of the group, Gudrun Ensslin, is also portrayed in the film.
Actor Moritz Bleibtreu said: “Why is this story still sparking interest. I think the main reason is the love between these two. I always said that if it had been three men, we wouldn’t talk about it, no one would’ve made a film about it.”
Dozens of prominant West German figures were among about 34 people thought to have been killed by the Red Army Faction. The members gave up their struggle and disbanded in 1998.
Stefan Aust said: “When you pass from this romantic vision, or this cynical self-fulfillment, into real terrorism, then you should recognise that you have said goodbye to your own moral standards that are too high.”
Some 26 members of the Red Army Faction died during their campaign of violence and many were sentenced to long prison terms.