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The Silence of the Lambs: A Retrospective Review

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The Silence of the Lambs is one of the most influential and profound films ever. Released in 1991, no one was ready for what director Jonathan Demme had created. This film is one of few that transcends its own genre. It is without a doubt a crime-thriller, but it is also very much a horror film. I personally fall into the category that labels it as horror.

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There is not a single moment in The Silence of the Lambs that could, or should, be changed. From the writing to the acting, everything is nothing short of superb; and that is the main reason why the film is held in such high regard.

Based on the novel of the same name, we get the story of a young woman who is training to be an FBI agent. Clarice Starling is approached by Jack Crawford, director of the FBI, to go and interview Hannibal “The Cannibal” Lecter to try to get information regarding a new serial killer nicknamed “Buffalo Bill.”

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Anthony Hopkins delivers a performance that is both chilling and exhilarating at the same time. His ability to make us both fear and love him has led to both Lecter as a character and Hopkins himself becoming iconic in the film history. Alongside Hopkins, we have Jodie Foster delivering an equally engaging portrayal of agent Starling.  It’s a passionate performance that gave a voice to the strong female protagonist, which the horror genre is sorely missing at times.

The Silence of the Lambs was the winner of the “Big Five” Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress, and Best Adapted Screenplay, making it one of the only films in history to accomplish that. The film was also nominated for Best Sound Mixing as well as Best Film Editing.

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I’m sure that most, if not all, of us have seen this classic film at least once, but The Silence of the Lambs is celebrating its 26th anniversary so why not give it another watch? If you are looking for a film that will engage you this week, you could do much worse than this one right here!

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