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


Jack Clayton


Henry James (based on the story "The Turn of the Screw"), John Mortimer (additional scenes & dialogue) | 2 more credits »
Nominated for 2 BAFTA Film Awards. Another 3 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »





Complete credited cast:
Deborah Kerr ... Miss Giddens
Peter Wyngarde ... Peter Quint
Megs Jenkins ... Mrs. Grose
Michael Redgrave ... The Uncle
Martin Stephens ... Miles
Pamela Franklin ... Flora
Clytie Jessop ... Miss Jessel
Isla Cameron ... Anna


In Victorian England, the uncle (Sir Michael Redgrave) of orphaned niece Flora (Pamela Franklin) and nephew Miles (Martin Stephens) hires Miss Giddens (Deborah Kerr) 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 (Clytie Jessop) and valet Peter Quint (Peter Wyngarde) 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


A New And Adult Motion Picture Experience! See more »




Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


The film opens with a creepy song written by Paul Dehn and Georges Auric sung over a black screen for about forty-five seconds before the Twentieth Century Fox logo appears. In some cinemas, the projectionists assumed this was a mistake on the print and edited the movie so it began with the appearance of the Fox logo. See more »


Deborah Kerr's hair has been visibly 'teased' and lacquered with hairspray in an early 1960s hairstyle even though the film is set in the 1860s. See more »


Miss Giddens: But above anything else, I love the children.
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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 Otra vuelta de tuerca (1985) See more »


O Willow Waly
Music by Georges Auric
Lyric by Paul Dehn
Performed by Isla Cameron
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User Reviews

The Innocents (1961) ***
7 February 2009 | by JoeKarlosiSee all my reviews

This one was slow going for awhile, but in the end I just had to admire its creepiness and much of its sinister ambiance and attention to detail. It's a British film based on the 1898 American novella "The Turn of the Screw", about a young woman (Deborah Kerr) who accepts a job as governess for two small children somewhere off in the English countryside. Neglected by their distant uncle (Michael Redgrave), little orphans Miles and Flora are of special interest to Miss Giddens (Kerr), as she adores children and cares about their well being. But very soon she begins hearing voices and seeing vivid apparitions of the deceased former governess and her dead lover, an evil valet who used to work on the Estate. Are they ghosts? Have the two children become possessed and corrupted by the spirits of the dead? Deborah Kerr's paranoid performance is very good here, and I appreciated the ambiguous nature of the proceedings; not everything is spelled out, and much is left to the viewer's imagination, including the ending -- which is not completely resolved, but is very powerful. *** out of ****

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Frequently Asked Questions

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Release Date:

15 December 1961 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Turn of the Screw See more »


Box Office


GBP430,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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