(out of 5)
Thomas Harris’s second novel involving the terrifying Hannibal “The Cannibal” Lecter becomes one of the greatest thriller-horror films of all time. Jodie Foster is riveting as Clarice Sterling, an FBI agent in training whose aspirations to become a part of the Behavioural Sciences program come true quicker than she had originally hoped. Agent Scott Glenn entrusts her to perform a routine interview with the famous Lecter (Anthony Hopkins), who might know crucial information about a serial killer called Buffalo Bill, and Sterling’s job is to play innocent and get whatever help she can out of him. What she actually does is get knee-deep in the search for Bill, forming an oddly close friendship with the psychopathic Lecter based on his respect for her honesty and clarity of vision. Jonathan Demme’s classic is a terrifying and mindboggling masterpiece of suspense, one which delights in subverting genres by having the female protagonist of a horror story become the hunter instead of the traditionally hunted. The superb acting, fantastic moody photography by Tak Fujimoto and impeccable editing combined with Ted Tally’s letter-perfect screenplay make for one of the most unforgettable experiences you’ll ever have in front of a movie screen.
Directed by Jonathan Demme
Cinematography by Tak Fujimoto
Music by Howard Shore
Production Design by Kristi Zea
Costume Design by Colleen Atwood
Film Editing by Craig McKay