Woyzeck (1979)

Not Rated  |   |  Drama  |  24 August 1979 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 6,368 users  
Reviews: 33 user | 53 critic

Franz Woyzeck is a hapless, hopeless soldier, alone and powerless in society, assaulted from all sides by forces he can not control.



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Complete credited cast:
Eva Mattes ...
Wolfgang Reichmann ...
Willy Semmelrogge ...
Josef Bierbichler ...
Drum Major
Paul Burian ...
Volker Prechtel ...
Handwerksbursche (as Volker Prechtl)
Dieter Augustin ...
Irm Hermann ...
Wolfgang Bächler ...
Rosemarie Heinikel ...
(as Rosy-Rosy Heinikel)
Herbert Fux ...
Thomas Mettke
Maria Mettke


Everything in town appears calm, placid, lovely. But Woyzeck, a rifleman assigned as an orderly, hears voices -- the times are out of joint, at least in his cosmos. To his captain, Woyzeck is a comic marvel: ignorant but courageous, full of energy to little purpose. To a local doctor, Woyzeck is a curiosity, the object of cruel study. Woyzeck, 40, has a young wife, Marie, and a small child. He dotes on them, but Marie, even though she has periods of guilt and remorse, carries on affairs and flirtations. When the captain lets drop broad hints of Woyzeck's being a cuckold, his inner demons and the voices of the spheres take over. Will madness bring action? Of what sort? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

soldier | coffin | dancing | blood | murder | See All (18) »




Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

24 August 1979 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Werner Herzog's Woyzeck  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?


The entire 80-minute film was shot with only 27 cuts. See more »


In the opening credits scenes we see Woyzeck being coerced into conducting a series of military drills by the drill instructor. Woyzeck has his rifle slung over his left shoulder. This is incorrect as it should be on his right shoulder. Additionally, he also brings his "rifle down" to the incorrect side. The Prussian Army shouldered their rifles on the right shoulder (facing front). See more »


Marie: [to her man during a fight] I'd rather have a knife in my body than your hand on me.
See more »


Version of Woyzeck (1976) See more »

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User Reviews

21 June 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I am a fan of Herzog so I'll cut to the chase---- There is a scene in the film where a cat is thrown out of a second story window--- right into the arms of Kinski--- after he catches the cat I believe he becomes hypnotized. Kinski starts to shake and convulse (granted he is an excellent actor) but the fact that Herzog is always dealing with hypnotizing people and chickens (Heart of Glass, Even Dwarfs Started Small) i believe that he knew something about Kinski and his love for animals--- or maybe his hate for animals--- in any case he has strong feelings attached to these innocent creatures--- and I believe that Herzog exploits this to hypnotize Kinski.

When I watched it (again) I did so without the subtitles, I wanted to concentrate on the imagery and the shots. I came to realize how much Herzog's movies are like theater. The sets are made and there is usually just one shot in a scene and from a direction that makes me feel like part of a theater audience--- granted some of these sets are on a location where there is little that needs to be done to get the imagery across.

It also contains one of the best death scenes in film history.

6 of 11 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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