With Anthony Hopkins, Julianne Moore, Gary Oldman, Ray Liotta
Directed by Ridley Scott

I was a little shocked and surprized when I found that this DVD release was meant to come in a two disc set (and how I do love my DVD extras!). It's similar to a friend of mine who purchased
Magnolia expecting the talked about additional material. Besides the notes mentioning outtakes, the solitary disc reads "Disc 1" - dead give away, really. But the widescreen DVD experience is still far superior to any pan & scan VHS copy.
It's been a decade's wait for cinemagoers to get another taste of the dark relationship between serial killer Hannibal Lecter and FBI agent Clarice Starling, since Jonathan Demme's brought the Harris characters to life in the award winning
Silence Of The Lambs, setting the world on fire. Author Harris's long anticipated follow-up is a delicious blend of suspense, drama, black humour and selective, well timed gore. Scott was a fine choice to direct this sequel while Jodie Foster is hardly missed once Julianne Moore gets on a roll (which is from the outset), the only flaw her Southern accent that sometimes loses conviction. Gary Oldman (and his make-up team) does an absolutely remarkable job as the Hannibal ex-victim also on his trail. Gut wrenching and mind blowing scenes (to be taken literally) punctuate the film in well-paced segments of tension building, its long running time not even felt in the butt muscle.
A source who'd read the book, filled me in that the adaptation is pretty accurate, give or take a condensation of several events into one and the deletion of sub plots like body building lesbians (!) - Hollywood PC, maybe, but divergent went thinking about the bulk of the main story. Where this could have gone wrong so easily (it being Tinsel Town & all), the production staff from producer to caterer pulled together to make it one of the cooler thrillers of the previous year.
At least the
Hannibal single disc experience offers you a director's commentary option, Scott offering an insightful non-stop narrative companion piece to this fine film. If you can find the 2 disc version anywhere, perhaps it will be as rewarding an experience as the Silence Of The Lambs Special Edition.

5 / A
- PB

1 2 3 4 5 6
A - B - C

Click below for the trilogy

never let a review decide for you, but for those who need a rating, see the Flamedrop scale below
6 - Volcanic
5 - Blistering
4 - Hot
3 - Smolder
2 - Room Temperature
1 - Fizzled
0 - Extinguished

A: Multi-Viewing Potential

B: Could Enjoy A 2nd Look

C: Once Should Suffice

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