Loosely based on two stories by Poe and inspired by the Marquis de Sade, the film is set in 19th century France. Jean is plagued by nightmares in which he is dragged off to a madhouse. He is invited by a Marquis he meets to spend the night in his castle. There he witnesses a blasphemous orgy and a 'therapeutic' funeral. The Marquis insists on helping Jean him conquer his fears and takes him an asylum where the patients are free - but for how long?