The Baader Meinhof Complex is the docudrama style story of the birth and evolution of the Red Army Faction (RAF) terrorist group during the tumultuous frenzy of the late 60s and 70s. Having missed out on this time in history, which was glossed over when I went to school, I was fascinated by this slice of the past that is equally relevant to the world we live in today.

It’s an eye-opening look at the mindset of the terrorist, the conditions that lead to and foster terrorism, and the fine line of how an act of protest or resistance can lead a people or person to cross over to the very tactics that they claim to be against. What the film depicts with a clear, unflinching eye is that while those who use terror may have started with a justifiable cause, the tactics of the terrorist are in the end futile. Their violent means obscure the wrongs originally inflicted upon them and instead doom their cause. Continue reading »

A friend suggested I watch the films of Krzysztof Kieslowski. She specifically recommended “The Double Life of Veronique.” As a thoughtful gesture, she bought the movie “Blue” for me by the same director when she couldn’t find the first.

I wanted to love this movie as she seemed happy about introducing me to this director and after all, bought me the DVD as a gift. I have to report that not only did I not like this film, I hated it. It’s pretentious, self-indulgent, European cinema and worst of all, painfully boring. I highly recommend it to insomniacs as a magic cure. This movie would put Ambien out of business if it were available at drugstores.

Juliette Binoche, plays a woman who is the sole survivor of a car crash that claims the life of her husband and child. Her husband was a famous composer with, as we s-l-o-w-l-y find out, a few secrets. Throughout the rest of this torturous experience, her character sits or wanders around aimlessly for what seems like days off my life.  The secrets when they are revealed turn out to be common and not at all interesting or compelling.

My friend, sensing I’m not enjoying the movie perhaps because of my intensely loud sighing and statement that there’s nothing happening, says that maybe the reason I’m not enjoying the movie is because I haven’t experienced loss like the character in the movie. I point out that a commonality with the characters has nothing to do with whether someone likes a movie or not. I’ve never been injected into someone’s dream and had to plant an idea in their mind but I loved “Inception.” She then makes the argument that this is “artistic” filmmaking and that’s why I don’t like it. The underlying meaning being that I’m an idiotic American that couldn’t possibly understand anything artistic. Yes, that’s it. Except for the fact that I like any number of films that could be called artistic, slow, or odd: “The Painted Veil,” “Dancer in the Dark,” and “Donnie Darko” to name a handful.

The reason I’m not enjoying the movie is plain and simple–the movie sucks. Don’t take a bite out of this one unless you need the sleep.

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