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Universal acclaim - based on 17 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.9

Universal acclaim- based on 355 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: In pursuit of one serial killer, ambitious FBI student Clarice Starling (Foster) is forced to enlist the aid of another notorious killer, the incarcerated ex-psychiatrist known as "Hannibal the Cannibal" Lecter (Hopkins).
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 17
  2. Negative: 0 out of 17
  1. 100
    Hopkins' insinuating performance puts him right up there with the screen's great bogymen. [13 February 1991, Calendar, p.F-1}
  2. 100
    The superbly crafted suspense thriller…slams you like a sudden blast of bone-chilling, pulse-pounding terror.
  3. Reviewed by: Staff [not credited]
    100
    A mesmerizing thriller that will grip audiences from first scene to last.
  4. A smart, restrained entertainment, it doesn't splash around in blood and hysteria. It doesn't have to.
  5. 89
    At long, long last: the real thing.
  6. 88
    Chilling and creepy, and there's no denying that the most celebrated aspect of the film -- the Clarice/Hannibal connection -- could not have been accomplished with greater skill.
  7. The plot is squeezed dry in this bloody Valentine from Hollywood and becomes annoyingly predictable. Thriller stumbles on its own success

See all 17 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 68 out of 73
  2. Negative: 2 out of 73
  1. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    A fantastic, haunting experience. You won't be scared in the traditional horror movie sense, but you will be terrified in the psychologicalA fantastic, haunting experience. You won't be scared in the traditional horror movie sense, but you will be terrified in the psychological horror sense. Anthony Hopkins is absolutely haunting as Hannibal Lecter, and he pulls the roll off very well. A classic movie that no sane person will want to miss. It may be slow, but your attention will not be lost. One of the best films of the last 50 years, easily. Expand
  2. Aug 30, 2013
    10
    I have no words to describe how good is that movie. I really enjoy it and it's without any doubt the best of the trilogy and one of the bestI have no words to describe how good is that movie. I really enjoy it and it's without any doubt the best of the trilogy and one of the best movies ever made. Hopkins is always excellent!!! Bravo! Expand
  3. Mar 24, 2015
    10
    An absolutely brilliant psychological thriller that delivers some of the greatest scenes and movie lines of all time. Hitchcock and FosterAn absolutely brilliant psychological thriller that delivers some of the greatest scenes and movie lines of all time. Hitchcock and Foster together in this movie arguably make the greatest acting duo of all-time. Expand
  4. Jun 26, 2013
    9
    Wow. I don't know why I haven't seen this sooner!

    I really loved this. The film was complex, but never to the point that you got completely
    Wow. I don't know why I haven't seen this sooner!

    I really loved this. The film was complex, but never to the point that you got completely lost. I found myself getting confused about where we were, and then it would all click a few seconds later. It was very clever at making sure you were aware of which character was who.

    The direction is very interesting in this film, with the contrast of the dark and gritty world of the FBI, and what happens when a character is put in prison, but when this then goes against the killer's room, I loved the designs, with all the colours etc.

    But lets face it. We all know why this film works so well.

    Anthony Hopkins. I bow down to you.

    I heard he was only in the film for about 15 minutes. That was a lie. He was just brilliant. The perfect mix of charm and menace to create a truly unforgettable villain. Hannibal Lecter really is the standout of the film, and will have you on the edge of your seat, whenever he is on the screen.

    I think the thing that kept me interested the most here was that it was simply a great story. An involving and original story that had me in it's bloody palms from start to finish.
    Expand
  5. May 27, 2015
    9
    Oh my God, how did my parents ever let me watch this film? I know I blocked most of it from my memory but watching it again revived the sheerOh my God, how did my parents ever let me watch this film? I know I blocked most of it from my memory but watching it again revived the sheer fear I felt when I was younger. Anthony Hopkins is so creepy that just the look of him and his speech make me shiver. I can't believe what goes on in that film, no wonder that I blocked out most of it.

    Anthony Hopkins has such a presence in this film that he stays with you even when he’s not in the scene. He’s in your head the whole time but when you think of it he’s barely in the movie, he just has a few scenes that’s how powerful his performance is.

    The film is so smartly shot, they chose a petite actress, that can easily look frail, and they used some wide shots from above to show how small she is around the Men, and shows how small and inexperience she must feel around them. Jodie Foster played her character with sensitivity and a quiet strength that also elevated the film.

    The Silence of the Lambs is over 20 years old but it holds up, you’re drawn to this suspenseful thriller from the beginning to the end, and then it stays with you. @wornoutspines
    Expand
  6. Feb 13, 2015
    9
    A creepy, at times horrific movie with incredible performances. Meticulously directed, and written with searing intelligence, this is veryA creepy, at times horrific movie with incredible performances. Meticulously directed, and written with searing intelligence, this is very likely the best horror film ever devised. Of course, Hopkins as Hannibal Lector is simply amazing. He's still the gold standard for the movie villain (even though he's kind of the hero), and I doubt he'll ever be surpassed. There are so many fascinating, creepy, and even disturbing aspects about the relationship between Starling and Lector, but I'll let you find this out for yourself. The characters here are as nuanced as I've ever seen. Foster's performance is also excellent. I must warn you, it's a graphic, disturbing, and at times even disgusting film, and on a different note some of the technical aspects of the movie haven't aged so well, but all in all, it's so memorable and haunting that I have to call it an absolute horror/crime classic. I'll admit, I've had nightmares where I was in a building with Hannibal on the loose. Those were some scary dreams. Expand
  7. TedK.
    Jun 20, 2008
    2
    Anthony Hopkins gives the most overrated performance of all time. He way overplayed it. Aside from that, the movie is really quite dull and Anthony Hopkins gives the most overrated performance of all time. He way overplayed it. Aside from that, the movie is really quite dull and unexceptional. I'm mystified by the positive reviews and never understood this movie's appeal. Expand

See all 73 User Reviews

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