Lecter is a brilliant psychiatrist and cannibalistic serial killer, who is also a very powerful and clever mind manipulator. His twisted, dry sence of humor and strong link to Clarice Starling made him extremely compelling and interesting to watch. Few could have predicted the impact that The Silence of the Lambs would have. Becoming only the third movie in history to do so, it won ‘The Big Five’ Oscars for Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Director, and Best Writing.
To pay respect to this great film, here’s 10 of the best moments from one of the best movies ever made: 10 best Silence of the Lambs movie moments.
Let’s start with the end of the movie: This is the final showdown between Clarice and Buffalo Bill. We get a first-person perspective of Buffalo Bill stalking Clarice in the dark as he wears night vision goggles.
The scene is masterfully prolonged as the sequence ends in a hail of gunfire. Foster is magnificent, conveying the sheer bloody panic that any of us would feel in the situation.
2. Clarice meets Hannibal
We follow Clarice down the hallway as she’s insulted by other inmates, before we meet Hannibal through Clarice’s eyes.
Hannibal asking Clarice to come closer is just the foreplay to the first of the films several captivating battle of wits between the two. Hannibal definitely gets the better of it, taunting Clarice on her background and showing off his deductive skills. But, Hannibal soon realizes he may have met his match when he questions Clarice about trophy-taking and the fact he didn’t take anything from his victims.
“No, you ate yours”, she replies without a moment’s hesitation. Burn.
3. I ate your Liver
The line has become so iconic that it deserves its own moment. Clarice bites back and asks Hannibal if he’s strong enough to self-analyse “unless maybe you’re frightened.”
He doesn’t take it well.
“A census taker once tried to test me. I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice Chianti,” Hannibal taunts, before unleashing his infamous slurping (for want of a better description). For all of his playful, witty persona during this first encounter, we now truly realize how dangerous Hannibal is.
4. “It rubs the lotion…”
Spare a thought for this poor captive woman who’s commanded to rub lotion into her skin. When buffalo bill starts mimicking her cries for help is only gets worse. The kicker in the sequence is the zoom-in on the bloodied fingernail in the wall.
5. Hannibal escapes
Arguably the best moment of The Silence of the Lambs simply had to involve Hannibal himself. Hannibal and his ingenuity first slays two unsuspecting police officers, before making good his escape after posing as one of the survivors.
For a film that previously was mainly interested in psychological battles, this comes as a visceral jolt to the senses and is all the more effective for it. Pure genius.