Set against a brooding Scandinavian winter landscape, this ingenious Gothic thriller unfolds as Salem (Max Von Sydow) escapes from a maximum security insane asylum. Dressed only in shorts and shoes, he braves the frozen countryside to seek revenge against his own family, who had him commited two years earlier for a brutal axe murder that he didn't commit... or did he? With the driven ingenuity of the deranged - or the wrongly condemned - Salem escapes from his cell, only to return, his absence unnoticed, after each murderous sortie. As the bodies pile up, only one man can put an end to Salem's savage retribution. Can the lone inspector (Trevor Howard) prove the man behind bars is the killer?