Saturday, October 17, 2009

Hannibal. B-

I suppose I was one of the detractors of 'The Silence of the Lambs,' a movie that I liked, but did not consider masterful the way so many others did. But I think everyone who saw it agreed on one thing: Hannibal Lector, played by Anthony Hopkins, made for a mesmerizing villain. And so, the long awaited return of 'Hannibal the Cannibal' arrives with Ridely Scott, probably the perfect man for the job, at the helm of it all. This time, the plot is more basic: catch Hannibal Lector. Julianne Moore takes over for Jodie Foster as FBI agent Clarice Starling, who seeks reparation for a goof-up on a drug raid. See finds out that there is a lead on Lector, so she immediately takes the case. Meanwhile, Lector roams freely in Europe. There is an Inspector named Renaldo Pazzi who decides he wants to capture Lector for the large reward. Of course, Lector is too smart for that, right? I liked 'Hannibal' almost as much as its predecessor, but for extremely different reasons. The original was more of a psychological mind game. Lector was in a single room for most of the film. This time its more of a plot driven thriller and Scott manages to pull it off, even if it was a little rough on the edges. I didn't feel like Scott was trying to make a great movie here. It seemed more like he was trying to please the audience, which he does in a most entertaining fashion. Hopkins does everything just right, and Moore proves that she can fill the shoes of Foster, who won an Oscar for her work in the first film. The climax was bizarre and mystical, almost like a dream. But that final scene on the plane, well, let's just say that in a subtle way it will leave your heart pounding. It was the perfect way to finish off a solid thriller.

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