A young F.B.I. cadet (Jodie Foster) must receive the help of an incarcerated and manipulative cannibal killer (Sir Anthony Hopkins) to help catch another serial killer (Ted Levine), a madman who skins his victims.
F.B.I. trainee Clarice Starling (Jodie Foster) works hard to advance her career, while trying to hide or put behind her West Virginia roots, of which if some knew, would automatically classify her as being backward or white trash. After graduation, she aspires to work in the agency's Behavioral Science Unit under the leadership of Jack Crawford (Scott Glenn). While she is still a trainee, Crawford asks her to question Dr. Hannibal Lecter (Sir Anthony Hopkins), a psychiatrist imprisoned, thus far, for eight years in maximum security isolation for being a serial killer who cannibalized his victims. Clarice is able to figure out the assignment is to pick Lecter's brains to help them solve another serial murder case, that of someone coined by the media as "Buffalo Bill" (Ted Levine), who has so far killed five victims, all located in the eastern U.S., all young women, who are slightly overweight (especially around the hips), all who were drowned in natural bodies of water, and all who ...Written by
Fangoria Magazine was declined the chance to cover this movie because Orion Pictures and the filmmakers felt that the magazine's focus on the horror genre would stigmatize its awards season chances. They were also barred from covering Cape Fear (1991) for similar reasons. See more »
During Clarice's first visit to see Hannibal, she wore a skirt with belt on the waist when she was in Dr. Chilton's office and before entering the final corridor leading to Hannibal's cell. The belt was gone when she entered the corridor. She probably had to remove her belt before entering the maximum-security area, particularly if it had a metal buckle. See more »
The ending scene continues throughout the entire credits See more »
Criterion's Special Edition on DVD features outtake footage not included in the theatrical version, including:
a longer version of the scene where Clarice discovers Raspail's head inside Your-Self Storage;
a longer version of the scene where Lector explains to Clarice how to identify Buffalo Bill from his rejected applications for sex change surgery. The dialogue is longer and is taken almost verbatim from Thomas Harris' novel, and plays over a scene where the camera moves inside Buffalo Bill's cellar, stopping at the edge of the pit where Senator Martin's daughter is held. This is the same scene that appears in the theatrical version, right after Starling's visit to the enthomologists Roden and Pilcher, with no voiceover but with music and sound effects and Katherine Martin's screams coming from the pit;
a brief new scene where Starling is given a gun from instructor Brigham right before her departure for West Virginia;
an alternate version of the car scene where Starling and Crawford are talking after the Elk River victim's autopsy. In the theatrical version, Crawford apologizes to Starling for humiliating her in front of the state troopers; the alternate take has Starling revealing that a bug cocoon was found in Benjamin Raspail's throat. In the theatrical version this information is not revealed until later, when Starling mentions it during one of her encounters with Lector;
a longer version of the telephone conversation between FBI Director Burke, Paul Krendler and Crawford after the phony offer to Lekter has been discovered; Crawford tries to convince Krendler not to accept Lector's help;
a new scene showing a meeting with Starling, Crawford, Paul Krendler and and FBI Director Burke; Krendler blames Starling and Crawford for Lector's escape and Burke suspends them both from the case;
the DVD also features the complete video monologue from performance artist Jim Roche as the TV Evangelist; in the theatrical version Roche appears on a TV put in front of Lector's cell, as punishment for Miggs' death.
The Silence of the Lambs runs two hours.Anthony Hopkins appears for little more than sixteen minutes, yet during those minutes he hasn't bored you for a second, not even after the tenth or eleventh viewing. Such is the power of his performance, it's absolutely impossible to forget him.His character, Dr.Hannibal"The Cannibal" Lecter, is a brutal killer with revolting methods and habits, but he's also very intelligent, charismatic and with good taste(you can interpret that as you like).A clichè by now, but who cares? He still is one of the key elements in this wonderful thriller, which sees Jodie Foster's Clarice Starling asking for Lecter's help to catch another killer.The result is a dangerous yet fascinating relationship between the young, unexperienced FBI-agent and the convicted,but basically omnipotent, psychiatrist.He's a step ahead of everyone all the time, and makes sure everyone notices, with his witty, unforgettable one-liners.If there had to be only one reason to worship this movie, then it would have to be the chemistry between the two leading actors.Never before has a non-sexual man/woman connection been more thrilling.Never before has a film's ending been more unsettling and brilliant and left us asking for more.
Best watched with a nice Chianti...
P.S. dear film-buffs, have the lambs stopped screaming?
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