This movie is #36 on the ICS Top 100 of the 1990s.
I watched this when it was first released in 1991. Tim was in the military and in Saudi Arabia for Desert Storm. I was working in accounts receivable at a home goods manufacturing place in Goldsboro, living in base housing with my two dogs, Zimba and Sugar. I had seen the previews for this movie and I wanted to read the book before the movie came out. I was sick and I left work and bought sudafed...I remember getting so fucked up off the sudafed, and feeling so crummy, and lying on my gray pseud-suede sofa, reading the novel within 24 hours.
I had a dictionary next to me and I would read, consult the dictionary, read some more. I loved the novel. I don't remember if it scared me -- but I have no problems scaring the shit out of myself and being alone...well, if it involves mice, then I do give a shit...but monsters, vampires and serial killers? Fuggedaboutit.
Then I went to the premiere and? Humdrum.
And of course, that would be my reaction. All books are better than the movie!!! And while I appreciated Jodie Foster (a childhood idol, no, obsession?) and Anthony Hopkins' roles, I wasn't blown away as the rest of the nation was. I remember hearing reactions to scenes in the movie, especially the phone call at the end from Lecter to Clarice, how chilling it was and I was pissed that I didn't have the same feeling...BECAUSE I LOVE WHEN MOVIES DO THAT TO YOU!!!
So fast-forward 20 years (wow. i mean wow.) we watch it again with CJ.
It was much better not knowing the novel so well. :) But it was still just good. I mean, really good but not in any of my top favorites list. I may read the book again because, at the time, I loved Red Dragon (the predecessor to Silence and the movie, Manhunters, is pretty darn good too) and loved this book.
The movie shows its age in our digital world: no cell phones, computers are big and bulky, cars are ugly too. Did we really not care about how cars looked in the 90s?
But fortunately, the dialog and interaction between Clarice and Lecter is electric. Hopkins, who over the years I went from extreme like to just 'whatever', is spot-on with a chilling portrayal of a sick serial killer.
But in true Hollywood style, it still ends with a nice ribbon - meaning Clarice gets spared by the sicko because he actually _can_ feel for another human being (not!) and the inept psychiatrist Dr. Chilton, gets his in the end from Lecter -- portrayed in a way that we root for Lecter.
For me, it's another notch in getting this movie challenge accomplished. Still have a ways to go and so far, I have watched the 50 movies on this list that I've already seen!