The Silence of the Lambs is a cult film in the thriller genre. The original source is the novel by Thomas Harris about Hannibal Lecter. This picture is part of a series of films. He came out first, after which he received the prequel “Hannibal” in 2001 and the sequel – “Red Dragon” in 2002, as well as “Hannibal Rising” in 2007. In 2011, the picture was included in the US National Film Registry as one of the the best in the history of cinema.
Thomas Harris wrote the book The Silence of the Lambs under the strong impression of the case of Eddie Gein, who killed a huge number of people in a few years. Work on the work was fast, but several years were devoted to editing.
The meaning of the film
Many viewers and critics call The Silence of the Lambs a classic film within the genre, but they are wrong. First of all, this is a powerful psychological picture, which reveals its oppressive atmosphere to us from the very first frames. At the moment, world cinema has not presented us with a single creation comparable to the masterpiece of Jonathan Demme. The realism of some scenes could not leave any viewer indifferent.
The main character of the film is Clarissa Starling, an employee of the FBI, and the main character is a cannibal maniac, sadist and genius Hannibal Lecter. They have to work together to find the maniac Buffalo Bill. The protagonist feels real pleasure when he persuades the girl to tell about her difficult life in exchange for information about the maniac.
Why did the film get such a name? In one of the moments of her story, Clarissa mentions a childhood incident that happened to her on a farm with her relative. She was trying to save the lambs that were about to be slaughtered. HER plan failed. Now she is tormented by remorse. Then Lector convinces her that the nightmare will end only when the criminal can be caught.
Lector’s help turns out to be much more effective than the actions of the police. In addition, he refuses to pursue and harm the girl. To some extent, the hero acts as a senior mentor for an FBI agent. And the heroine, despite the fear, listens to every word and tries to independently understand the tips of the mentor.
The maniac pursued by the heroine is a rather interesting person. Buffalo is imprisoned in the body of a man, but all his life he dreams of becoming a girl. He kidnaps the senator’s daughter.
Because of this, Clarissa can no longer see Lector, but he escapes from prison. He conducts his own investigation, which suggests that the killer and those killed were well acquainted, and the maniac himself is a tailor.
Clarice, meanwhile, is looking for information about Buffalo’s first victim. She finds out where this man lives and goes straight there. The maniac drives her into a dead end – the girl gets to him in the basement, where he turns off the light. With the help of a night vision device, he aims at the victim. But the girl manages to kill the maniac by focusing on the sound.
The aura of elusive and bloody maniacs permeates the film to the very end. But almost no scene is bloody or fear-inspiring with unexpected creepy visuals and music.
Jonathan Demme has created a painting that has come to be considered iconic. This film is one of the few that keeps you in suspense, but with each frame it grows. Some find the actions of the characters unmotivated, but this impression disappears. Over time, the characters help the viewer build a logical chain of their actions and considerations in their head. The film also perfectly demonstrates to us who this “unpredictable and terrifying” villain is. This is one of those effects that is truly surprising, even shocking. Spectators can feel themselves in the place of the characters – they are also “led by the nose”, they discover a lot of details over time. And the closure of this case does make you experience true happiness.
The audience will surely notice the amazing performance of Hopkins. Although the line with this character is a bit minor, it is of great importance. She has absolutely nothing to lose from this. This effect was achieved thanks to the director’s desire to fully involve the actors in the filming process, to make them live the film.
The meaning of the final
Many viewers argue that the ending of the film does not match the ending of the book. For some, this is a plus, but for someone – a thing that spoiled the perception of the picture. As the director admitted, the end of the film was made, in his opinion, more cinematic and should have been easier to perceive by eye.
The main character calls up her mentor when he was preparing to kill the doctor, because he forbade them to see each other. In the book, this moment was expressed through a letter written by Hannibal to Clarice. Well, the scene with the severed hand of the doctor is considered a cult.
Some argue that the Buffalo hunting scene at the end is “an ode to feminism.” But this is far from the case, because it is unlikely that our heroine would be able to unravel the case herself without the help of a mentor.
In general, the ending does not relax, but drives the viewer to a new circle of thoughts. She maintains an atmosphere of horror and is not going to weaken it.