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The Death King (1990)

Der Todesking (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, Horror | 25 January 1990 (West Germany)
Seven episodes, each taking place on a different day of the week, on the theme of suicide and violent death.


Jörg Buttgereit




Cast overview, first billed only:
Hermann Kopp Hermann Kopp ... Man (segment "Montag")
Heinrich Ebber Heinrich Ebber ... Video Fan (segment "Dienstag")
Michael Krause Michael Krause ... Man in Park (segment "Mittwoch")
Eva-Maria Kurz Eva-Maria Kurz ... Spinster (segment "Freitag") (as Eva M. Kurz)
Angelika Hoch Angelika Hoch ... Assassin (segment "Samstag")
Nicholas Petche Nicholas Petche ... Man (segment "Sonntag")
Susanne Betz Susanne Betz ... Girl in Park (segment "Mittwoch")
Mark Reeder Mark Reeder ... Soldier (segment "Dienstag")
Hille Saul Hille Saul ... Soldier with Shears (segment "Dienstag")
Ades Zabel Ades Zabel ... Shopkeeper (segment "Dienstag")
Jörg Buttgereit ... Torture Victim (segment "Dienstag") / Voice of Projectionist (segment "Samstag")
Bela B. Bela B. ... Singer (segment "Samstag") (as Dirk Felsenheimer)
Andreas Doehler Andreas Doehler ... (as Andreas Döhler)
Alexander Kiersch Alexander Kiersch
Bettina Buchholz Bettina Buchholz
Learn more

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Seven episodes, each taking place on a different day of the week, on the theme of suicide and violent death.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Horror


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?

Alternate Versions

Although listed as uncut by the BBFC, the 1990 UK video release had been slightly edited by around 4 secs before submission by director Jörg Buttgereit to remove the shot of a man's penis being cut off. See more »


References Ilsa: She Wolf of the SS (1975) See more »


Move - Did You Learn Your Cathechism
By The Angelus
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User Reviews

Today is a good day to die… So are tomorrow and the day after!
5 April 2006 | by CoventrySee all my reviews

"Der Todesking" is not exactly the type of film that makes you merry… Jörg Buttgereit's second cult monument in a row, which is actually a lot better than the infamous "Nekromantik", exists of seven short episodes – one for each day of the week – revolving on unrelated people's suicides. In between these already very disturbing episodes, Buttgereit inserts truly horrifying images of a severely decomposing male corpse. The episodes aren't all equally powerful but, as a wholesome, "Der Todesking" is ranked quite high on the list of all-time most depressing art-house films. Particularly the episodes on Wednesday, involving a man explaining his sexual frustrations to a total stranger in the park, and the one of Sunday, focusing on a younger man molesting himself to dead, are extremely intense and devastating to observe. The added value of this film, or any other shockumenary like it, is debatable and I'm not even sure whether or not Buttgereit had any type of message to communicate here. There's the vague mentioning of an eerie chain letter that encourages its readers to commit suicide but mostly we remain uninformed about these people's motivations to end their lives so dramatically. Entirely unlike I expected, "Der Todesking" isn't exploitative or repulsively graphic! On the contrary actually, I never could have hoped Buttgereit would be so subtle and thoughtful regarding the portrayal of pure human misery. The Thursday episode is a perfect example of this, as it stylishly shows different viewpoints of a famous German bridge while the names, ages and occupations of persons who jumped off appear on the screen. The production values are inescapably poor and the editing often lacks professionalism, but this isn't what really counts in this type of cinema. The subject matter is strong and forcing us to contemplate about the less cheerful – but also indispensable – aspects of life. GREAT use of tragic music, too!

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West Germany



Release Date:

25 January 1990 (West Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

The Death King See more »

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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