While imprisoned in a Confederate girls' boarding school, an injured Union soldier cons his way into each of the lonely women's hearts, causing them to turn on each other, and eventually, on him.


Don Siegel (as Donald Siegel)


Albert Maltz (screenplay) (as John B. Sherry), Irene Kamp (screenplay) (as Grimes Grice) | 1 more credit »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Clint Eastwood ... John McBurney
Geraldine Page ... Martha
Elizabeth Hartman ... Edwina
Jo Ann Harris ... Carol
Darleen Carr ... Doris
Mae Mercer Mae Mercer ... Hallie
Pamelyn Ferdin ... Amy
Melody Thomas Scott ... Abigail (as Melody Thomas)
Peggy Drier Peggy Drier ... Lizzie
Patricia Mattick Patricia Mattick ... Janie (as Pattye Mattick)
Charlie Briggs Charlie Briggs ... 1st Confederate Captain (as Charles Briggs)
George Dunn ... Sam Jefferson
Charles G. Martin ... 2nd Confederate Captain (as Charles Martin)
Matt Clark ... Scrogins
Patrick Culliton ... Miles Farnswoth


As the costly American Civil War still rages on, a twelve-year-old student of the forgotten Miss Martha Farnsworth's Seminary for Young Ladies in warm and humid Louisiana stumbles upon a gravely wounded Union soldier, Corporal John McBurney. Taken in to recover from his injuries, before long, McBurney will find himself imprisoned in a small room inside the mansion. Little by little, the seductive but unwanted guest tries to take advantage of the female inhabitants' wartime-subdued desires; however, is McBurney really in control over the situation? Written by Nick Riganas

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


One man...seven women...in a strange house! See more »


Drama | Thriller | War


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Producer and Director Don Siegel says in his biography that he forbade the use of make-up by the actresses on the set. But some of them trespassed the order and put on some mascara, lipstick, and nail polish. That of course made Siegel angry. See more »


As Carol leaves the gazebo after Edwina arrives, she has to run a good distance to get to the tree where the blue rag is kept to alert patrols to "yanks", but when McB hears horses, he can see the front gate from the gazebo. See more »


Hallie: [singing while milking the cow in the barn] If livin' was a thing that money could buy, Don't you know that rich would live, Lord, the poor would die. Oh, trouble.
[stops singing, looks at the cow]
Hallie: Is that all you gonna give? Guess you dryin' up like the rest of us women around here.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The leg amputation scene was edited by the censors for the film's original UK cinema release. Later releases were uncut and rated 15. See more »


Referenced in A Time to Love (1971) See more »


In the Garden
Written by C. Austin Miles
Performed by Elizabeth Hartman
See more »

User Reviews

an overlooked treasure
8 April 1999 | by Pookie-10See all my reviews

Anybody who hasn't seen this film is truly missing something special. Though it may not necessarily be for everyones tastes. This film may possibly break more 'sexual taboos' than any other, and it is another wonderful example of the early 70's trend of high creativity and barrier's being broken like no other time. It is haunting and unusual, both erotic and disturbing. Lalo Schifrin's music is superbly "dreamy" and dark, the photography and imagery are equally so. A very intelligent, groundbreaking inventive film.

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English | French

Release Date:

23 January 1971 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

The Beguiled See more »

Filming Locations:

Louisiana, USA See more »


Box Office

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

The Malpaso Company See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)


Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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