BFI Classics: The Silence Of The Lambs

Author: Yvonne Tasker

Not being shy about the films reputation, we are pointed to the fact that The Silence of the Lambs won the top 5 awards at the Oscars (Film, Director, Actor, Actress and Screenplay). Not many films have done this.

Many of these books pick a singular theme to focus on – be it science, art, religion – but this book goes all over the place with looks at feminism, art culture and religion. The feminist or women-in-movies angle is obviously an easy one as we find Jodie Foster trapped in a man’s world. Her boss is male, her main antagonist is male (even if he wants to be a woman) and the help she gets is from the world of men, including the doctors and the patients. The book also points out shots of Starling surrounded by men twice her size – like when she enters the lift at work.

Art is obviously shown as a theme of all the Hannibal films. Red Dragon naturally had its title picture, but The Silence of the Lambs also uses much artistic imagery, even in the way that victims are displayed, almost like live exhibitions.

This book goes all over the place – but it seems that the decent serial killer thrillers have many layers to look at. This edition is one worth having to accompany the film.

Steven Hurst

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