turn the screw(s) (on someone)(redirected from turn the screw)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Encyclopedia.
turn the screw(s) (on someone)
To exert excessive and coercive pressure, force, or threats of violence on someone. The bank has really started turning the screws on me ever since I began missing my mortgage payments. I'll send one of my men around to him tomorrow to start turning the screw. Then we'll see if Johnny's still so sure he won't sign the contract.
See also: turn