The Silence of the Lambs

The Silence of the Lambs ★★★★★

One of the greatest thrillers of all time, Jonathan Demme's The Silence of the Lambs is an exceptionally crafted and perfectly written film.

The highlight of the production is no doubt the performances. Jodie Foster plays the likable and intelligent heroine perfectly, never missing a beat. Ted Levine as Buffalo Bill is a freakishly believable psychopath. Of course, the highlight is Anthony Hopkins' scene stealing Hannibal Lecter, who in his 16 minutes of screen time chews up every scene he's in with such hypnotizing charisma.

The script is smartly written, providing riveting conversations between Hannibal and detective Clarice (Foster). Their relationship is a unqiue one, as they are alike in the strangest of ways. The screenplay delves into the inner mechanisms of a psychotic in a fascinating way, and every line spoken is as believable as the next.

Demme's direction is flawless, as he crafts some immensely suspenseful scenes. Cinematography is brilliantly handled, using very effective close ups when appropriate. Editing is also very inventive, particularly a highly original jump cut following a sequence of meticulous parallel editing.

The score by Howard Shore also deserves a mention, as it makes itself known without ever becoming overbearing. It perfectly sets the tone for every scene.

Overall, this psychological thriller is as smart as movies come. Filled with excellent performances, perfect direction, meticulous editing, and an inventive screenplay, The Silence of the Lambs stands the test of time, and will for decades to come.

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