Angst (1983 film)

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Angst (1983 film).png
Directed by Gerald Kargl
Produced by Gerald Kargl & Josef Reitinger-Laska
Written by Gerald Kargl & Zbigniew Rybczyński
Starring Erwin Leder
Music by Klaus Schulze
Cinematography Zbigniew Rybczyński
Edited by Zbigniew Rybczyński
Running time
75 min (director's cut), 83 min (international version)
Country Austria
Language German

Angst (English: "Fear") is a 1983 Austrian film. Written and directed by Gerald Kargl with cinematography by Academy Award winner Zbigniew Rybczyński, it tells the story of a psychopath recently released from prison and is loosely based on the mass murderer Werner Kniesek. Though little known, the film has received praise for its unconventional camera work and intense acting performances, particularly from actor Erwin Leder.


Klaus Schulze's soundtrack for the film is perhaps better known than the picture itself. It contains percussive and synth-based music, similar in style to the work of Tangerine Dream, a group of which Schulze was once a member.

See: Angst (soundtrack)

Though she performed no music in the film, cast member Silvia Rabenreither would later found the band Sugarplum Fairies with her husband Benedikt Bohm.


Film director Gaspar Noé has cited Angst as an influence on his filmmaking style. He has been quoted several times talking about the film:

  • "There's another film called "Angst" or "Fear," which in France was called "Schizophrenia," but it was banned theatrically. It's got an X-rating, so it never came out. It could maybe come out today. It's Austrian. One of the masterpieces of the decade. The director never did another movie, though. He had too many debts, so he stopped directing."
  • "There is another movie that really inspired me. An Austrian movie that was never released in the states, called "Angst." It means 'fear' in German. It's the best psycho-killer movie I've ever seen. The two movies I saw most in my life are 2001: A Space Odyssey and Angst. Because it was banned all over Europe, but it came out on VHS in France."
  • "Then there's an Austrian movie, Angst. It's about a man killing a family just in order to go back to prison, where he felt better. It's like a very dark, European version of Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer, but much more baroque in its filming. It was banned all over the world - even in France it was one of the last movies to be X-rated for extreme violence. I think it's going to be rediscovered everywhere in the next few years."

Blu-ray release[edit]

In 2012, Angst was released on Blu-ray in France under the title of Schizophrenia. The Region B disc includes two DTS-HD Master Audio tracks: German and French. However, only French subtitles are available. Cult Epics released an English subtitled version of "Angst" Uncut & Uncensored in theaters April 2015 in USA & Canada, and on Blu-ray & DVD thereafter.

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