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Henker - Der Tod hat ein Gesicht (2002)

A documentary about the last European hangmen.


Jens Becker


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Credited cast:
Ionel Boeru Ionel Boeru ... Self / Romania executioner
Reuf Ibrisagic Reuf Ibrisagic ... Self / Yugoslavia executioner
Joseph Malta Joseph Malta ... Self / Nuremberg trial hangman
Fernand Meyssonnier Fernand Meyssonnier ... Self / French Algeria executioner
György Pradlik György Pradlik ... Self / Hungary hangman


They are the only men who are allowed to kill. Each in his own way. Always at the break of day. They carry out a sentence pronounced by rule of law. Hangmen. They now reveal themselves. Tell us about their lives. Tell us about their "trade". After five years of research and shooting, this unique film is now completed. The last executioners of Germany, the former East Germany, France, Hungary, Yugoslavia and Romania have faced the camera. They are living eye-witnesses of the end of an era: 800 years of the death penalty in Europe. The film provides the viewer with a close-up biographical look at the lives of the enforcers of this penalty and of their personal fates. The careers and personalities of the individual hangmen mesh into an inconsistent whole. Written by Florian Dedio

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Documentary | War

User Reviews

a very interesting but also difficult subject to make a documentary about
9 December 2002 | by ChristianDzubielSee all my reviews

I have seen this movie nearly one year ago and i was very interested how the subject (What is going on in the mind of a "Henker" and how does he deal with it) was treated. But as intense as the interviews with these men are, the documentary never really achives it to dig deeper beyond the surface of the strange and morbid fascination of the unique profession these men have. That might be a problem of the interviewed men themself, because they seem to never let the questions be to intimate and they prefer to talk in a rather "technical" way about their work. However, this movie is worth watching and is quite well photographed and edited, but it fails in showing the real inside of the "Henker". In the end, the documentary can be seen as a impressive statement against the death-punishment.

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German | English

Release Date:

7 March 2002 (Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

Hangmen See more »

Filming Locations:

Bucharest, Romania See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

LOOKSfilm See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby SR



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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