The 1st half is quite exuberant in its leftist political activism that truly feels as young and spirited as its subject. Sure, there's caricatured characterization and the dialogue is sloganeering, but it's genuine to the romanticized notions that lead any ideology down the path of terrorism. The 2nd half is darker, asking: Does the end justify the means? Sure, but what end is vindicated for the means to be violent?
A very sad example for the decline of German cinema. The director shows almost no ability to tell a story, it’s a hopeless sequence of single scenes without feelings for dramaturgy, augmented by fragments of news reel to pretend a true picture of the events. Some of the actors are horrible and not capable to communicate with others using their body language ... (read on in the commentaries)
I think there's a certain age where all this makes sense. I remember reading about this group in Der Spiegel in college and romanticizing the notion. At that age you have no sense of patience, and the end justifies the means. They weren't wrong about the problems of US Imperialism or police states. The United States has been heading that way for a while. Thank goodness we've been narcotized by TV and films.
The first half was easily a 4. Brilliant, and I enjoyed it quite a lot. Now the second half, that was a mess. Just terrible. Maybe a 1. I say they should've made 2 movies out of it -- like Mesrine. But then again, I think Mesrine should've been 1 movie.
A sharply-crafted period political thriller that doesn't let the politics get in the way of the story. Strong performances, gripping action and suspense scenes, and a strong atmosphere of 70s international paranoia. More than just a history lesson, and more than just an entertaining thriller, but a fine example of both.
Okay, so derivative (especially in the first half), but a well-executed and ultimately good political thriller. Loved that it took its time, but thought it could have eschewed a couple of characters in favor of more important ones. Still, well-made and very entertaining throughout.