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The Innocents (1961)

Approved  |   |  Horror  |  19 February 1962 (Sweden)
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 17,774 users  
Reviews: 193 user | 143 critic

A young governess for two children becomes convinced that the house and grounds are haunted.



(novel), (additional scenes & dialogue), 2 more credits »
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Nominated for 2 BAFTA Film Awards. Another 3 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
Megs Jenkins ...
Martin Stephens ...
Clytie Jessop ...
Isla Cameron ...


In Victorian England, the uncle of orphaned niece Flora and nephew Miles hires Miss Giddens as governess to raise the children at his estate with total independence and authority. Soon after her arrival, Miss Giddens comes to believe that the spirits of the former governess Miss Jessel and valet Peter Quint are possessing the children. Miss Giddens decides to help the children to face and exorcise the spirits. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Apparitions? Evils? Corruptions? See more »




Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

19 February 1962 (Sweden)  »

Also Known As:

The Turn of the Screw  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Average Shot Length = ~9.2 seconds. Median Shot Length = ~8.6 seconds. See more »


During Miss Gidden's interview with The Uncle, a clock can be heard striking the Westminster Chimes half hour. The Uncle goes to a mantel clock checking his watch. The mantel clock shows 10 past 11:00. The Uncle touches the clock dial, but does not correct the time. See more »


Miles: What shall I sing to my lord from my window? What shall I sing for my lord will not stay? What shall I sing for my lord will not listen? Where shall I go when my lord is away? Whom shall I love when the moon is arisen? Gone is my lord and the grave is his prison. What shall I say when my lord comes a calling? What shall I say when he knocks on my door? What shall I say when his feet enter softly? Leaving the marks of his grave on my floor. Enter my lord. Come from your prison. Come from your ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

The film begins with a totally black screen and the sound of Flora singing for several seconds; then the 20th Century Fox logo fades in and out. The singing continues for a few seconds before the opening credits begin. As the credits display, we see an anguished Miss Giddens praying on the left side of the screen. Her actions are not explained until the film's climax. See more »


Version of The Turn of the Screw (2009) See more »


O Willow Waly
Music by Georges Auric
Lyrics by Paul Dehn
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

30 May 2000 | by (USA) – See all my reviews

They sure don't make movies like this one anymore. This is one of the few horror movies that does not have gory or graphic images in it. Instead, the spooks in this movie are presented in a subtle way....yet, the movie is quite scary. This is the type of horror movie that I like, one in which every now and then you see a frightening image or a startling scene, and that image or scene lingers in your mind.

Everything about this movie is haunting. First, there's the song at the beginning: you hear a young girl's voice singing a beautiful yet somber song. Later you hear that song in several scenes in the movie.

Second, there's the setting: this movie takes place in a large Victorian mansion with many rooms and passages, while only about eight people live in it....what could be more eerie than that?

Then there's the exceptional cinematography. The black-and-white photography is perfect for this movie. This movie would not have been too creepy if it had been done in color. Further, many of the shots were innovative and the lighting was used ingeniously in some of the scenes.

Additionally, I liked the way that the director chose to play around with the sound, which brought more of an element of mystery to the movie. In one particular scene, there was a lot of noise initially....and in a split second there was dead silence....then several seconds later, it was noisy all over again (all in the same scene).

But what I think is the most interesting thing about this movie is the fantastic performance by Deborah Kerr. It's fascinating to watch her facial expressions in this movie. She demonstrates her character's fear quite well.

I also think that the actor who plays Quint is very scary-looking! He has a very sinister look, and it adds to the spookiness of this movie. If you really want to be spooked by this movie, watch it late at night with all of the lights off....dare to watch it by yourself.

36 of 39 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Recent Posts
Hmmm, maybe the kids are more evil than you thought xstrguy
How does she know? tpupkin
This is one of those movies... geekeh
On Second viewing not a ghost story at all... nutritionist
Others like this? writejulia
Three interpretations... Lu_tz
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