Christopher Roth
Christopher Roth / Moritz von Uslar
Frank Giering / Laura Tonke / Vadim Glowna / Birge Schade / Jana Pallaske
72 Film GmbH & Co. KG


This is the story of Andreas Baader, a car thief who, within the space of just a few years, was to become the revolutionary theoretician of the extreme left. This film spans the period from 1967, when Baader was serving yet another prison sentence for car theft and for driving without a driver’s license,until the moment in 1972 when the state and the Red Army Faction stand face to face on Frankfurt’s Hofeckweg. On one side of the street are one hundred police officers, some in plain clothes,wearing protective blue helmets and, on the other,Baader,Meins and Raspe,wearing sunglasses and leather jackets, laughing and bawling at their opponents. Baader is just 29 years of age. Four years previously, Baader and the love of his life, Gudrun Ensslin, set fire to two Frankfurt department stores: “ order to protest against the indifference with which the populace are content to sit back and watch the genocide taking place in Vietnam.We have learnt that talk without action is unjust”. Baader and Ensslin take refuge in Paris, the city of revolution, where they take drugs, steal motorbikes and simply hang loose. As soon as they arrive back in Germany, Baader winds up in prison again; shortly afterwards he is then liberated by the others in a spectacular break-out. He subsequently leaves the country with Ensslin, Ulrike Meinhof and a several others; the group heads for Jordan where they receive training as a guerrillas. After this, the Red Army Faction – or RAF – is formed; bank raids and car thefts (preferably BMWs) follow, new members are recruited, explosives obtained and attacks planned...Many members of the group are not more than about twenty years of age. An experiment in illegality commences – just how far is it possible to go? Meanwhile, on the other side of the law, someone is making his way to the top who, like them, is also something of an outsider. Kurt Krone eventually becomes chief of the Federal Office of Criminal Investigation; his approach is to try to think exactly like the RAF and, in many ways, the cop and the revolutionaries are indeed similar in character. Something else they have in common is that there’s no going back – for any of them...

Festivals & Academy awards and others

Berlin International Film Festival 2002
Alfred-Bauer Prize