Film and Food

Movies reviews with matching food – eat, watch, enjoy

Best Picture – The Silence of the Lambs (1991)

Starring Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins & Scott Glenn

Rating 8/10

I must start this review with an apology! I’m sorry OscarClubbers but I just couldn’t bear to watch this film again. It is so very disturbing that my poor little sensitive brain could not handle those images again. So, I am reviewing this from memory… because, frankly, I am a chicken livered, scaredy cat who can’t bear the image of the skin suit, stalking, evil and the rest.

Ahem. The plot. For those fellow chickens out there, The Silence of the Lambs is about serial killers! Eeek. One in jail and one on the loose. FBI hotshot Clarice Starling (Foster) is sent to interview Hannibal Lecter (Hopkins), an ex-psychiatrist/cannibal serial killer, who is securely locked away in jail.

Clarice’s mission is to find out how the mind of a serial killer works as the FBI finds itself at the mercy of a similar crim nicknamed ‘Buffalo Bill’ (Ted Levine). ‘Bill’ is on the loose, stalking women and doing unspeakable/unwritable things to them. Things of nightmares so I won’t pollute your mind.

Initially Hannibal doesn’t want to help her but after a bit of saliva filled dialogue, he offers her his profiling help in return for a transfer away from a detestable fellow inmate. The drama builds when ‘Bill’ nicks the daughter of a U.S Senator. Clarice’s boss (Glenn) then advises her to make a deal with Lecter, a fake one, to get his help.

Tensions mount as Clarice fights for more information on ‘Bill’. Meanwhile Lecter plays some pretty wicked mind games with her and finds out that the so-called deal is a trick. Eventually he…wait for it… escapes! Clues fly everywhere and the FBI flaps its arms around trying to catch them all. Twists and turns and gross stuff and scary stalking, night goggles, more gross stuff and desperation and a gun goes off. And there’s a creepy ending featuring Lecter.

Oh my goodness this is a rough film. So flipping scary, even today! The skin, the cannibalism, the stalking, the mindgames all make a riveting, disgusting and intriguing film. The performances are brilliant. You cannot beat Foster and Hopkins with such an incredibly freaky story. There are twists and chases and it is always unsettling when the ‘goodies’ have no idea what is going on.

This is a great film and fully deserving of the Best Picture gong. It is a disturbing but extremely well told story and if you can bear it, watch it. I’m sorry, I just couldn’t do it to myself.

The Silence of the Lambs Trivia:

  • $19 million
  • Foster and Hopkins both won Oscars for their incredible performances… yay!
  • The first film featuring the Hannibal Lecter character was Manhunter (1986) which flopped.
  • Hopkins based his character voice on Katherine Hepburn and Truman Capote
  • Lecter has a ‘Bon Appetit’ magazine in his cell… creepy!
  • Foster, Director Jonathan Demme and Scott Glenn researched their characters by spending some time at FBI headquarters, learning from real FBI agents! Fun, fun, fun!
  • Hopkins, on the other hand, visited prisons and sat in on court hearings… freaky!
  • Michelle Pfeiffer was first offered the role of Clarice. She found the film too violent so turned it down. Hmmmm. Can’t say I blame her.
  • The film is based on a real life relationship between serial killer Ted Bundy and Criminology Professor, Robert Keppel as they tried to catch another serial killer.

Ok that’s enough of that! I’m going to have nightmares just writing about it eeeeek. Next time join us as we watch Unforgiven starring Clint Eastwood and Gene Hackman.


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