Day 17: Silence of the Lambs
Writer: Screenplay by Ted Tally, based on the novel by Thomas Harris
Director: Jonathan Demme
Year released: 1991
Anthony Hopkins as Hannibal Lecter is one of my favorite antiheros. Yes, he’s a brilliant, charming doctor with a quirky taste for human flesh, but he makes a badass sidekick of sorts to our young Clarice Starling. Serial Killers, in our minds, are not supposed to be like Lecter, clean, refined and erudite. Serial killers in the general populace mind is someone like Buffalo Bill, a grimy packrat who lives in a bad neighborhood in a bad town. What Silence of the Lamb shows us is that there are both Lecter’s and Buffalo Bills out there in the world.
Overview: A young F.B.I. agent gains the confidence of an incarcerated killer in order for him to help her catch another killer.
- For his role, Anthony Hopkins studied cases behind serial killers and also visited prisons where he observed convicted murderers.
- Anthony Hopkins only appeared on screen for 24 minutes and 52 seconds, making his performance the second shortest to win an Academy Award for Best Actor.
- Buffalo Bill’s character is believed to be a mash-up of real life serial killers Ed Gein, who dug up human remains, Ted Bundy who lured women to his van and Gary Heidnick who kept his kidnapped victims in a pit in his basement.
- Jodi Foster spent time with FBI agent Mary Anne Krause in preparation for her role.
- To date, this is the only horror movie to win an Oscar.