Viva la Revolución

April 20, 2010

We’ve been watching mostly revolutionary cinema of late. First The Battle Of Algiers the other week, then Che (Part 1) and The Baader-Meinhof Complex in the last couple of days. How much fun it would be to be in a revolution!
The Baader-Meinhof Complex is an uneven film (too much to fit into one film, really; lots of terrible dialogue to move to plot on faster) but very acutely displays the reasons and ideals of the RAF in a warm light without making them look nice or heroic (Andreas Baader, particularly, comes off as an immature manipulative womaniser, which is apparently historically correct). It is quite extraordinary that Ulrike Meinhof was a grown-up journalist before she got involved with it all. One thing particularly well portrayed was that they’re all a bit rubbish at the whole stealthy part of being a terrorist – Meinhof wouldn’t have been wanted as a criminal if she could have kept her cool and not run off with the others during the prison break, and they all look twitchy and suspicious as anything when staking out locations. Chris: “What do you expect? They’re like a bunch of Manics fans with guns.”

One of the funniest scenes in the film is, after a spree of stealing things, including cars, their car is stolen. Baader completely loses his temper. Compare this with Che, which ends with him barring his men from driving a stolen car to Havana. Probably a nicer way to go about it, although while I was watching it I was thinking how I would have let them.

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