This infamously violent British Western stars Gene Hackman as Brandt Ruger, a wealthy rancher who goes away on a hunting trip with a group of friends. While he's gone, a thug named Frank Calder (Oliver Reed) kidnaps Melissa (Candice Bergen), Brandt's wife, under the mistaken impression that she's a schoolteacher and will be able to teach him to read. Despite being taken against her will, in time Melissa begins to develop feelings for Calder, who in his way cares for her more than her husband, who treats her like a possession. Melissa has fallen in love with Calder by the time Brandt returns. However, Brandt is enraged over the abduction of his wife, and sets out on a new hunting trip, with Calder and his men as his prey. Noted character actors G.D. Spradlin and L.Q. Jones round out the supporting cast.
by Mark Deming synopsis