An atmospheric remake of the 1970 Clint Eastwood melodrama about a wounded Union soldier (Colin Farrell) who finds refuge in Nicole Kidman’s girls’ boarding school during the Civil War.

Nursed back to health by Kidman’s headmistress, Farrell’s Yankee is soon stirring up rivalries and jealousies, and sexual and romantic longings, among the women.

Throughout, director Sofia Coppola – bringing a distinctly female perspective to the proceedings – keeps the film’s pressure-cooker tensions on the boil, introducing elements of suspense, sensuality and sometimes near-camp humour as Farrell seesaws between wheedling charm and howling rage.

Meanwhile, Kirsten Dunst’s spinster teacher yearns for escape, Elle Fanning’s schoolgirl flirts coquettishly and even Kidman’s steely belle finds her resolve wavering.