The Silence of the Lambs (1991)
USA / English
"Dr. Hannibal Lecter. Brilliant. Cunning. Psychotic. In his mind lies the clue to a ruthless killer. - Clarice Starling, FBI. Brilliant. Vulnerable. Alone. She must trust him to stop the killer. "A young FBI cadet must confide in an incarcerated and manipulative killer to receive his help on catching another serial killer who skins his victims.
Sweeping all five major Academy Awards ("Oscars" for Best Movie, Director,
Actor, Actress, Screenplay) is quite an accomplishment. Doing it nearly a
year after a film was released is a miracle considering the notoriously
short attention span of Oscar voters. It is a powerful example of how great
a movie can be when superb writers, directors, actors, and others work at
the top of their craft.
`Silence of the Lambs' is the story of a young FBI trainee Clarice Starling
(Jodie Foster) who is summoned to help find one serial killer called
`Buffalo Bill.' by interviewing another. Foster's performance is absolutely
brilliant. While Anthony Hopkins receives most of the (well-deserved)
praise for his chilling portrayal of incarcerated serial killer `Hannibal
‘the Cannibal' Lector', it is Foster's performance that holds the movie
together. The fear she shows just behind her eyes makes Clarice's outward
courage all the more interesting and vulnerable. This is the perfect way to
play the part because it explains Lector's interest in Clarice. Her only
bargaining chip in getting Lector's help is to let him `feed' on her
innermost secrets and fears in exchange for his brilliant insights into the
psychotic mind. The title of the movie comes from these exchanges and is
Director Jonathan Demme is masterful. There is one scene late in the movie
that I will not spoil. It is one of the most simply brilliant scenes ever
staged in a movie. I don't know if all the credit goes to Demme or the
writers, but there is a moment in the film where the suspense builds
beautifully to a what seems to be a common movie scene. However, through
skillful timing of the direction, the audiences assumptions are used against
them and when the truth is revealed (hint: it involves a doorbell) it is
shocking and induced a collective gasp from the audience I saw it with at
the theatre. It set the stage for an edge-of-your seat
Do not miss this movie.
The movie is incredibly suspenseful and an absolute must see.