The Nun and the Devil

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The Nun and The Devil
The Nun and the Devil.jpg
Directed by Domenico Paolella (as Paolo Dominici)
Produced by Tonino Cervi
Written by Tonino Cervi
Domenico Paolella
Starring Anne Heywood
Luc Merenda
Ornella Muti
Martine Brochard
Music by Piero Piccioni
Cinematography Giuseppe Ruzzolini
Edited by Nino Baragli
Release date
  • January 25, 1973 (1973-01-25)
Running time
91 minutes
Country Italy
Language Italian

The Nun and the Devil, or Le Monache di Sant'Arcangelo in the original Italian, is an erotic 1973 French/ Italian nunsploitation film directed by Domenico Paolella. It is also known as: Sisters of Satan (UK) and The Nuns of Saint Archangel (US). The action is set in the 16th century at the convent of Sant Arcangelo, near Naples, then under Spanish rule. The success of the film resulted in another period drama/nunsploitation film by Paolella released the same year, Story of a Cloistered Nun, an Italian/French/West German co-production starring Eleonora Giorgi.

The opening credits state that the movie is "Based on authentic 16th Century records and a story by Stendhal"--possibly Stendhal's L'Abbesse de Castro (1832) is meant.


The story involves the power struggles and sexual intrigues of a group of good-looking nuns at the Sant Arcangelo Convent and in particular the machinations of Sister Julia (played by former Miss Great Britain Anne Heywood) as she attempts, by any means possible, to succeed to the position of the dying Mother Superior. The nuns struggle with their vows of celibacy, some inclining to lesbianism whilst others invite male lovers secretly into their cells. Meanwhile, a corrupt church hopes to benefit from an aristocratic donation to the Convent, before launching an inquisition into the lubricious and corrupt activities of the inmates of the Convent. There then follow graphic scenes of torture as miscreant nuns are stripped naked and tortured with a variety of devices in order to elicit a confession of their misdemanours. The film ends with a resonant condemnation of the power hungry and corrupt church by Sister Julia after she has been found guilty and compelled to take poison to end her life.


In popular culture[edit]

The electro-industrial band My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult has sampled the English-language dub of the film extensively in songs such as "And This Is What the Devil Does" and "Kooler Than Jesus".


External links[edit]