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The Silence of the Lambs (1991)

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A young F.B.I. cadet must receive the help of an incarcerated and manipulative cannibal killer to help catch another serial killer, a madman who skins his victims.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay)
Popularity
307 ( 22)
Top Rated Movies #23 | Won 5 Oscars. Another 58 wins & 44 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Clarice Starling
Lawrence A. Bonney ... FBI Instructor
... Ardelia Mapp
Lawrence T. Wrentz ... Agent Burroughs
... Jack Crawford
... Dr. Frederick Chilton
... Barney
... Friendly Psychopath
Frank Seals Jr. ... Brooding Psychopath
Stuart Rudin ... Miggs
... Dr. Hannibal Lecter
Maria Skorobogatov ... Young Clarice (as Masha Skorobogatov)
Jeffrie Lane ... Clarice's Father
Leib Lensky ... Mr. Lang
George 'Red' Schwartz ... Mr. Lang's Driver (as Red Schwartz)
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Storyline

FBI trainee Clarice Starling works hard to advance her career, while trying to hide/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. While she is still a trainee, Crawford asks her to question Dr. Hannibal Lecter, 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, who has so far killed five victims, all located in the eastern US, all young women who are slightly overweight (especially around the hips), all who were drowned in natural bodies of water, and all who were stripped of large swaths of skin. She also figures that Crawford chose ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

From the terrifying best seller See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

14 February 1991 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Silence of the Lambs  »

Filming Locations:

 »

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Box Office

Budget:

$19,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$13,766,814, 15 February 1991, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$130,742,922

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$272,742,922
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (original cut)

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

For the film's sequel and prequel, characters appearing in the mental hospital were never re-cast: Anthony Heald returned in Red Dragon (2002), and Sir Anthony Hopkins and Frankie Faison returned for that film and Hannibal (2001). All of the F.B.I. employees, however, were re-cast in the sequel and prequel: Jodie Foster was replaced by Julianne Moore, Scott Glenn with Harvey Keitel, and Ron Vawter with Ray Liotta. See more »

Goofs

Jack Crawford says Clarice graduated magna cum laude from UVA, but UVA does not award that distinction to psychology majors. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
FBI instructor: Starling! Starling! Crawford wants to see you in his office.
Clarice Starling: Thank you, sir.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The producers wish to thank Adele, Bobby and the rest of the gang at Bufa's. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Practice: Evil/Doers (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Goldberg Variations
(1741)
Performed by Jerry Zimmerman
Written by Johann Sebastian Bach (as J.S. Bach)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Class Act
19 June 2000 | by See all my reviews

With Silence of the Lambs comes some much needed recognition for the horror genre. It is a first-rate production all around. It boasts a witty and suspenseful script based on the Thomas Harris novel, full of great lines. It has marvelous direction from Demme. Demme creates suspense very well throughout and uses some great directorial shots such as the twin frames of Clarice ringing a doorbell and the FBI men breaking into a home. The two lead actors won oscars for their performances...each deserved. Foster is very good in her role, but it is Anthony Hopkins that literally lights up the screen with his complex portrayal of a complex serial killer. Hopkins does the seemingly impossible. He frightens you with his outrageousness and yet illicts some pity/compassion(albeit not a lot) for his situation. He says his lines with reservedness when needed and brashness when needed. The rest of the cast is also quite good with Anthony Heald a standout as a unethical, petty doctor in charge of Hopkins. Of course the story of the other killer is very very chilling as well. A quality film in all aspects!


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