The silence of the lambs is an American thriller that blends crime and horror genre. It was produced in 1991 with the help of its director Jonathan Demme. The stars of the movie are Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, Scott Glen and Ted Levine. The movie was based on the novel that had been written by Thomas Harris which he had featured Dr. Hannibal Lecter a famous psychiatrist and a cannibal serial killer(Harris, 1991).
Clarice sterling (Jodie Foster), according to the movie is a young FBI trainee. Jack Crawford pulls her from the FBI Academy training. This academy was in Quantico, Virginia. Jack (Glenn), was from the Bureau Behavioral Scientist Unit. Therefore, she was given a task to interview Hannibal Lecter who was a serial killer, to ensure that the information that she is given according to where about of another serial killer known as Buffalo Bill (Levine) will be of help to apprehend him(Harris, 1991). This Buffalo bill was accused of skinning his female victims' corpse. The movie became very famous making it acquire five major academy awards. It was offered best picture, best actor (Foster), best actor (Hopkins) best director (Demme) and the best-adapted screen play (Ted Tally).
Characterization of Buffalo Bill (Jame Gumb)
According to Demme 1991, Buffalo Bill is portrayed to be a great skimmer who in his capacity is capable of disguising his identity through skinning women. He makes FBI get a lot of problem in tracing him. Furthermore, in his pursuit to disguise himself, he is seen to be a tailor making women dresses that show him as a transsexual. In his tailoring project, he makes suits of his female victims' skins. This ensures that he in untraceable making the FBI personnel use his serial killer and cannibal counterpart Lecter.
He does anything to ensure that he kills. Through his disguising aspects, he is capable of dodging around the FBI personnel who had all the resources to ensure that he is arrested. Nevertheless, though he was killed afterward, he had survived for a long time with his skimming ways. Through his intelligence, the FBI was not capable of getting him until they decided to use his counterpart serial killer Lecter.
Characterization of Clarice Starling
At the beginning of the movie, she is seen running alone in the woods where everybody senses that they might be a danger that underlies the thickest. In this dark forest, everyone expect to find an open killed corpse thus bringing a lot of sensation. Nevertheless, she seems to be composed and ready to encounter any danger that may appear. Despite her being in a field male dominated, Clarice seemed to be very composed in her duties. He is capable of taking the duty to investigate the where about of the serial killer Buffalo Bill without fear. He meets Cannibal and serial killer Lecter in the prison and she never shows any element of fear as she investigates him. She was able also to confront Buffalo Bill and even shooting him to dead. This shows how bold this female was.
In his attempt to apprehend the serial killer, she seems to be a very ambitious woman to ensure that she is capable of stopping women killing. In her access, Lecter says, "You're soooo ambitious, aren't you...? You know what you look like to me, with your good bag and your cheap shoes. You look like a rube"( Demme, 1991).
Despite of the many problems that she encounters in her pursuit to apprehend the serial killer Buffalo Bill, she never gives up. She seems to conquer everything single handedly without anybody to come for her rescue. She finally won the battle by killing Buffalo Bill, though Lecter escape from the cell.
Characterization of Hannibal Lecter
By being interrogated by Clarice, she took an advantage of being transferred from the prison he was in increasing his probability of him escaping from the cell. At first, he cheated Clarice about the identity of Buffalo Bill to have an upper hand for his mission to run away from the cell. This shows him as a very cunning person who is capable of creating his own stories that looks so real.
Hannibal is seen as a very intelligent person as he makes his way out of the cell despite of the massive security of the FBI. Everyone could have expected him to remain in the cell forever but at last, he is having the final laugh.
Due to her traits that seem to be so uncouth, he is a very scaring character. His description brings forth a man who is a monster. His ideal of being a cannibal and a serial killer makes the people even more fearful. According to Harris 1991, he is described as a very ugly person during the time that she was visited by Clarice for interrogation. It as, "A face so long out of the sun, it seems almost leached, except for the glittering eyes, and the wet red mouth."
The film address gender inequality by making most female gender to always fall for male prey. This is seen where women are seen to be vulnerable to people like Buffalo Bill who would kill them at their own will and use their skin to disguise them. Nevertheless, the female gender is seen to be the only one with their solution as shown by Clarice who kills the women serial killers.
The overall theme that looks so conspicuous is the evilness that the characters like Buffalo Bill and Hannibal Lecter portrayed. Despite of Lecter being a doctor, he used his professionalism to propagate his evil behavior of killing his clients and feeding on their fresh. Buffalo bill also is another man who is posed by evil deeds. He kills especially women and had guts to disguise him by making himself transsexual.
The film is full of horror scenes that are well linked to each other's. The actors are well organized therefore portraying their real character. This made this movie to earn five big prizes in the Oscar Awards Galore (Demme, 1991).