Ten years later in Hannibal, Dr. Lecter (Hopkins) is living the good life in Italy, studying art and sipping espresso. FBI agent Clarice Starling (Julianne Moore, replacing Foster), on the other hand, is now a quiet, moody loner. A botched drug raid results in her demotion--and a request from Lecter's only living victim, Mason Verger (Gary Oldman, uncredited), for a little Q&A. Little does Starling realize that the hideously deformed Verger is using her as bait to lure Dr. Lecter out of hiding. Taking the basic plot contraptions from Harris's baroque novel, Hannibal is so stylistically different from its predecessor that it forces you to take it on its own terms. Director Ridley Scott adeptly sets up an atmosphere of foreboding, but it's all buildup for anticlimax, as Verger's plot for abducting Dr. Lecter doesn't really deliver the requisite visceral thrills, and the much-ballyhooed climatic dinner sequence wobbles between parody and horror. Hopkins and Moore are both first-rate, but the film contrives to keep them as far apart as possible, when what made Silence so amazing was their interaction. When they do connect it's quite thrilling, but it's unfortunately too little too late.
Hannibal-This underrated sequel looks and feels quite different from its predecessor. It has no intention of excelling as a pyschological thriller, but neither is this a straight through-and-through gorefest. Certainly entertaining but hardly mind-blowing, Hannibal is at least visually stylish and unpredictable, if not also somewhat silly.
*** 1/2 out of *****
The Silence of the Lambs was director Jonathan Demme's academy award winning 1991 classic. The success of the film, however, should not only be attributed to the director, because it was the work of the cinematographer, editor, writer, set director and, most of all, brilliant actors. Jodie Foster -IS- FBI agent Clarice Starling, brilliant, young, attractive (well, not really) and tough. Foster perfectly displays the emotions that go through her character and her growth throughout the picture. Some of my favorite scenes were where she discovers Buffalo Bill (the way she yells "freeze" is great!) and when she stands up to a crowd of men and orders them out of the room where an autopsy is taking place. Anthony Hopkins completely deserved his academy award as Hannibal. His portrayal of Hannibal and his personality was quite interesting. The way I see it, Hannibal is quite a nice gentlemen, but has a very large problem, that being his love for the taste of human flesh. I think you can tell from his scenes with Clarice Starling what a polite person he is. He might ask some personal questions, but the way he talks is courteous and friendly, if a bit intense. The cinematography of the film is fabulous, too.Read more ›
On DVD, the experience is very thrilling and state-of-the art. Silence Of The Lambs still sends chills down our spines, and engages us in a disturbing world of madness, tinged with cynical humor and engrossing conversations between Hopkins and Foster. Anthony Hopkins is Hannibal Lecter, the former therapist turned cannibal and criminal. It's undoubtedly Anthony Hopkins' trademark role and one that he will be remembered by. We are unnerved when Hannibal Lecter first meets Clarice Starling in the dungeon of the prison, where he confesses that he once "ate a man's liver with some fava beans and a nice chianti". To extract information revolving the transvestite skin-collector Buffalo Bill, Clarice must reveal deeply personal and traumatizing events from her childhood. She recalls running away from an abusive home only to witness the slaughter of innocent lambs in a farm house. The memory continues to haunt her and is reawakened by the hypnotic power of Dr. Lecter. The movie ends with the capture of Buffalo Bill and Clarice Starling's promotion. But Dr. Lecter manages to escape his cell and vanishes into Italy. Which brings us to the next film in the collection, the sequel, also based on the book by Thomas Harris. The follow-up "Hannibal".Read more ›