Directed by Jonathan Demme [Other horror films: Beloved (1998)]
This is one of those very contested, borderline genre pieces. Personally, I find there enough qualities in this classic to consider it a horror flick, but if you’re one of the many who just don’t see the horror here, that’s understandable too. That discussion aside, The Silence of the Lambs is of course a solid movie, with it’s biggest strengths being the story and great performances.
It’s the combination of Jodie Foster and Anthony Hopkins that really give this movie life. Hopkins does a great job as Lecter, and despite his moderately short screen-time, he has a presence that really can’t be contested in the film. Playing Buffalo Bill, Ted Levine shows a fantastic, crazy side as opposed to Hopkins’ calmer form of insanity. Other performances worth noting are Scott Glenn (I love his rather straight-laced character here), Anthony Heald (who I saw somewhat recently in the 2006 comedy Accepted), and Frankie Falson (admittedly, he didn’t really do much, or get that much screen-time, but he’s still an actor I appreciate).
When you combine such a stellar cast with a pretty hypnotizing story, only good things can come from that, which I think is clear from the film. Though violence wasn’t much the point, there are a couple of standout sequences, such as Lecter’s breakout, that are well-worth seeing.
Quite often, this is a clever and psychological film, and it’s obviously very well-known, and for good reason. Many probably wouldn’t consider the film horror, but like other well-loved borderline flicks, such as Jaws and Identity, I certainly think it has its place in the genre. A great film with a lot going for it, this is definitely a 90’s film worth seeing, if for some reason you’ve not already.