The Silence of the Lambs

Critics Consensus

Director Jonathan Demme's smart, taut thriller teeters on the edge between psychological study and all-out horror, and benefits greatly from stellar performances by Anthony Hopkins and Jodie Foster.

96%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 101

95%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 846,954

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Movie Info

Jodie Foster stars as Clarice Starling, a top student at the FBI's training academy. Jack Crawford (Scott Glenn) wants Clarice to interview Dr. Hannibal Lecter (Anthony Hopkins), a brilliant psychiatrist who is also a violent psychopath, serving life behind bars for various acts of murder and cannibalism. Crawford believes that Lecter may have insight into a case and that Starling, as an attractive young woman, may be just the bait to draw him out.

Cast & Crew

Jodie Foster
Clarice Starling
Anthony Hopkins
Dr. Hannibal Lecter
Scott Glenn
Jack Crawford
Ted Levine
Jame "Buffalo Bill" Gumb
Anthony Heald
Dr. Frederick Chilton
Brooke Smith
Catherine Martin
Diane Baker
Senator Ruth Martin
Kasi Lemmons
Ardelia Mapp
Roger Corman
FBI Director Hayden Burke
Thomas Harris
Writer (Novel)
Grace Blake
Associate Producer
Gary Goetzman
Executive Producer
Howard Shore
Original Music
Tak Fujimoto
Cinematographer
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News & Interviews for The Silence of the Lambs

Critic Reviews for The Silence of the Lambs

All Critics (101) | Top Critics (28) | Fresh (97) | Rotten (4)

Audience Reviews for The Silence of the Lambs

  • Oct 24, 2016
    A rare treat of a film. A horror/thriller with the dramatic and psychological gravitas to stand among the greatest films ever made. The film takes big risks and manages to succeed on almost every front. A brilliant psychological film with simply superb performances. Hopkins nails the role of his lifetime. I have little doubt the film may have failed without his brilliant grasp and delivery on the character. Jodie Foster also does an impeccable job. She is an agent who gets little respect. Her angst, un-ease and the domineering way the men she interacts with treat her, adds a sense of dread and powerlessness that helps define the film. While Hopkins is a dominate force, it takes a very strong actor to be remembered in these scenes. Jodie Foster's timid, yet controlled and paradoxically brave, handling of her character was flawless at elevating the entire film. Buffalo Bill is also a solid creeper villain. One of the weaker parts of the film is the sort of absurd mechanics of the Dr's final scenes and Starling and Bill's final showdown. It is all a bit unbelievable, but thankfully you are too engrossed to really think about it. I think part of what makes the dread of the film so real is the relationship foil between Bill and Brooke Smith, as Catherine Martin, and Dr Lecter and Agent Starling. Buffalo Bill is crazy, barely controlled and despicable. He is free and preying on women. He has poor Ms Martin in a well tormenting her. Yet, we unmistakably feel that this caged man talking to Agent Starling is far more menacing, far more dangerous and terrifying. Agent Starling seems more at his mercy than Ms Martin is to Bill. This is truly the mark of profound evil. This masterful dynamic gives this film a lasting psychological power. Hopkins menace is not steeped in gore or terror but rare, profound authority. We fear the power of villains because they wield weapons, supernatural might or brutality. The good Dr commands our fear through sheer psychological influence. We are never sure what turn he might take, what we are sure of is that it is calculated, cold and there is nothing you can do about it.
    Shane S Super Reviewer
  • Sep 23, 2015
    Thrilling, thought provoking, well acted, well directed. Overall a great film
    Kameron W Super Reviewer
  • Nov 24, 2014
    A stunning and scintillating thriller with remarkable characters portrayed larger than life by Foster and Hopkins.
    Adriel L Super Reviewer
  • Nov 01, 2014
    What more could I ask for? It's flawless!
    Maymay A Super Reviewer

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