Anglo-American author and journalist Christopher Hitchens lavishly praised The Baader-Meinhof Complex in a review for Vanity Fair. He singled out the filmmakers' decision to strike against Hollywood's usual practice of glamorizing Marxist insurgents by making an explicit connection between revolutionary and criminal violence. By slowly erasing the difference between the two, Hitchens wrote that the film exposed the "uneasy relationship between sexuality and cruelty, and between casual or cynical attitudes to both," as well as the RAF's tendency to offer unquestioning support to the most extreme factions of the Marxist and Islamist underground. Relating his own memories of West Germany during the era, Hitchens further described the RAF as "a form of psychosis" that swept through the former Axis powers of Germany, Japan, and Italy a generation after the end of the Second World War. Comparing the RAF to the Japanese Red Army and the Italian Red Brigades, Hitchens wrote, "The propaganda of the terrorists showed an almost neurotic need to 'resist authority' in a way that their parents’ generation had so terribly failed to do. " In conclusion, Hitchens praised the film's depiction of an escalating cycle of violence and paranoia in "which mania feeds upon itself and becomes hysterical. "