Newest Review: ... characters he comes across. Jodie Foster couldn't return as Starling, as she had just become a mother. So the role of Starling was r... more
Solid, unfairly criticised follow-up
Member Name: shaneo632
Advantages: Great cast, interesting premsie
Disadvantages: Not enough psychology
Hannibal is the first sequel to the excellent, Oscar-winning film The Silence of the Lambs, and is based on the Thomas Harris novel of the same name. Considering the huge acclaim of the first film, and the massive hype surrounding this outing, there was a lot of pressure on director Ridley Scott to not only adapt the book well, but provide a suitable follow up to what is unassailably one of the best films of the 1990s. It may not measure up much to the original film, but it's still an entertaining film that benefits so much from the unique presence of Anthony Hopkins, returning as psychopathic cannibal Hannibal Lector.
There is one notable line-up change, though - FBI Agent Clarice Starling is now played by Julianne Moore instead of Jodie Foster, and whilst the change isn't exactly agreeable, Moore does a superb job stepping into Foster's shoes, and is about as good a replacement as I can imagine.
The film takes place about a decade after the events of the last film - Clarice has recently been disgraced after a botched drug bust she led resulted in the deaths of several people. Furthermore, there seems to be a lot of corruption going on around her - Justice Department official Paul Krendler (Ray Liotta), whose advances she rejected some time earlier, appears to be working against her, either out of spite, or because he is carrying out someone's vested interest. Also in the mix is a millionaire named Mason Verger (a nearly unrecognisable Gary Oldman), who Lector made slice his own face off some years before, and is now horribly disfigured. Clarice is trapped in this mess, whilst everyone seems to be trying to track down Lector - she is faced with several options, and could very well let Lector be murdered for what he has done in the past, but her being bound to uphold the law compels her to try and keep Lector alive, and instead bring him to justice.
Although not a touch on The Silence of the Lambs, Hannibal still retains the wry wit and humour of the original film, combined with Ridley Scott's assured direction, and superb performances from Anthony Hopkins and Julianne Moore.
Summary: A slick if somewhat emaciated film