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SPK Komplex

The Socialist Patient Collective began as an alternative therapy group for psychiatric patients that were also critical of society in 1970. The ex-members being interviewed aren‘t in agreement about how contact between SPK and RAF was made.


The socialist patient collective began as a therapy group for psychiatric patients which was founded by assistant doctor Wolfgang Huber in 1970 at the University of Heidelberg. In the spirit of the 68ers, the group attempted to deconstruct the traditional doctor patient relationship and find alternative therapies while strongly following the social critiques of Hegel. The core idea of was that it wasn‘t the individual that is mentally ill, but that a crazy society makes people sick. The collective grew fast and Huber quickly came into conflict with the university and the group was under police surveillance. The ex-members being interviewed aren‘t in agreement about what led to the SPK having contact with the RAF, but it is clear that SPK members were part of the embassy siege in Stockholm.

The documentary by Gerd Kroske (DER BOXPRINZ) portrays the SPK as the less radical and self-important little sibling of the RAF. Kroske lets the members as well as the other side – judges, cops, and reports – speak and does a similar job as Stefan Aust‘s book on the Baader Meinhof Group. Wolfgang Huber disappeared from the public eye after spending a few years in prison due to a questionable sentence. As much as the group was supposed to be the sum of all of its members, the interviewees reference Huber a lot. He only appears in a few present-day audio and film recordings and so the complex around him becomes a somewhat diffuse phantom. The film shows an interesting facette of the “German Autumn“ but it dodges some answers.

Christian Klose

Translation: Elinor Lewy


Deutschland 2018, 111 min
Genre: Documentary
Director: Gerd Kroske
Author: Gerd Kroske
DOP: Susanne Schüle, Anne Misselwitz
Montage: Olaf Voigtländer, Stephan Krumbiegel
Music: Klaus Janek
Distributor: Edition Salzgeber
FSK: 6
Release: 19.04.2018




  • OV Original version
  • OmU Original with German subtitles
  • OmeU Original with English subtitles

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