"I should tell you...I've given serious thought...to eating your wife."
- Hannibal Lecter (Anthony Hopkins) to Pazzi (Giancarlo Giannini)
- Hannibal Lecter to Clarice Starling (Julianne Moore)
New York Times - 02/09/2001
"...Handsomely staged....[The] presentation is mournfully beautiful; rarely has a director used so many variations on midnight blue..."
Entertainment Weekly - 02/16/2001
"...Gruesomely engrossing....Lecter remains a riveting figure of fear..."
Variety - 02/05/2001
"...Tantalizing, engrossing....HANNIBAL imparts its own pleasures by painting a portrait of a man of ultimate civilized refinements whose dark side always threatens to lurch out violently..."
After a decade in abeyance, the courtly cannibal, Hannibal Lecter, returns to the screen, again played by Anthony Hopkins, under the direction of Ridley Scott. When F.B.I. Agent Clarice Starling (Julianne Moore) is blamed for a botched drug bust, her boss Paul Krendler (Ray Liotta) makes a media circus of her humiliation, which catches the attention of Lecter. Now a hardened veteran, she begins receiving letters from the twisted genius, who remains obsessed with her. Yet she's not the only one interested in drawing out the psychopath, now lecturing on the Renaissance in Florence. Italian detective Pazzi (Giancarlo Giannini) hopes to impress his young wife by nailing the reward for his capture, and wealthy pedophile Mason Verger (Gary Oldman) is eager to take revenge against the cannibal for leaving him with a hideously deformed face. But they're no match for Hannibal's coyly satanic ubiquity, which bewilders his quickly narcotized foes before he administers a punishment sufficiently grotesque to suit his sense of amusement.The odious Krendler, in particular, learns to use his gray matter for, perhaps, the first time in his life. However, all is prologue to his fated rendezvous with Clarice. A banquet for the splatterati, reveling as it does in gore and dismemberment, the film features brilliant work by a stellar cast, and the kind of meticulous art direction and lushly magnificent photography that one has come to expect of one of Scott.
Based On A Novel |
FBI Agents |
Serial Killers |
Theatrical Release |
Theatrical Release: February 9, 2001
Shooting locations: Richmond, VA, Asheville, NC, Washington, D.C., and Florence and Sardinia, Italy.
Jodie Foster, who starred in SILENCE OF THE LAMBS, passed on the film, because she was dissatisfied with the manner in which the character of Clarice was handled. Jonathan Demme, the director of SILENCE OF THE LAMBS, passed on the film due to what he felt was its excessive violence.
Julianne Moore underwent basic FBI training at the organization's Quantico, VA facility, in preparation for her role.
Anthony Hopkins has stated that he based Lecter's gait on that of a cat.
Italy's Popular Political Party protested the shooting of one of Lecter's murders in the historic Palazzo Vacchio.