The German Chainsaw Massacre – Movie Review

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Every now and then I like to educate people about German horror movies of the past and the present. And when I saw this movie, I had to review it.

About the Movie

Das Deutsche Kettensägenmassaker (also known as Blackest Heart) is an homage, or maybe more of a parody, of the 1974 movie The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, as you might see by the title alone. In 1990, shortly after the wall fell and the borders between eastern and western Germany opened, Clara kills her husband and flees to west Germany, ready to meet a friend there. Instead she meets an inbred cannibal family. Chaos ensues.

German Chainsaw Massacre Review

No idea why former German Chancellor Helmut Kohl is listed on this poster.

It’s written and directed by Christoph Schlingensief, who made this movie as part of his “German Trilogy”, after 100 Years of Adolf Hitler and before Terror 2000. The most notable actor to appear in this movie is Udo Kier as Jonny.

Its runtime is 63 minutes, and those 63 are more than enough.


The German Chainsaw Massacre is a movie you have to see to believe. The first shot of the movie is of a woman cut in half, with her guts hanging out. It’s just a short flash, before the movie even starts. From the first scene everything just feels weird. Clara’s husband is played by a woman, masked as a man like you’d see it in a cheap theater production. Adding to that are many uses of the Dutch angle and other weird angles.

Later on we meet the family. One daughter is a lesbian, Margit, played by the same woman who played Clara’s husband. The other characters are just crazy and weird, Udo Kier at one point sets his hair on fire, running around the room singing “My hair is on fire”. That kind of crazy.

Blackest Heart movie Review

A young Udo Kier as Jonny (yes his hair is on fire)

The whole movie has an underground feeling to it, almost like a movie you shouldn’t be watching. Even though it is not scary, it surely is shocking and making you feel uncomfortable.

The gore is crazy. It is very cheap, but I feel it’s so cheap that they might have just used actual animal guts, which adds another level of creepy. The shot of the woman ripped in half is surely a gory highlight, and you get the full context of that shot later in the movie. But there are many more uses of gore, some not as good as others, but all in all still effective.

Final Thoughts

This movie is as much a horror movie as the Troma movies. It’s not scary, but excessive in gore and other taboo topics that make you feel uncomfortable instead of scared. It is cheaply made with some bad effects. But it still is interesting and worth a watch. Just know what you are getting into before you start it. It’s experimental film making mixed with strong social commentary.

If you like Troma or want to see something really out of the ordinary, or just plain weird, give The German Chainsaw Massacre a try.