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Hannibal - The Hannibal Lecter Collection - Blu-Ray Print E-mail
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Written by Chris Mayo   
Monday, 19 October 2009
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Directed by: Ridley Scott
Written by: David Mamet, Steven Zaillian
Produced by: Dino De Laurentiis, Martha De Laurentiis, Ridley Scott
Cinematography by: John Mathieson
Editing by: Pietro Scalia
Music by: Hans Zimmer
Cast: Anthony Hopkins, Julianne Moore, Gary Oldman, Ray Liotta, Frankie Faison, Giancarlo Giannini
Year: 2001
Country: USA
Language: English
Color: Color
Runtime: 131 minutes

Studio: MGM Fox

Hannibal is the much anticipated sequel to Silence of the Lambs, and the third entry in the Hannibal trilogy (Red Dragon hasnít been considered).  With the novel written in 2000, and the movie released shortly thereafter in 2001, it now gets the hi-def treatment as part of The Hannibal Lecter Collection from MGM/Fox.

Hannibal follows the saga of lethal Dr. Hannibal Lecter, now on the lam in Florence, Italy after having cleverly escaped captivity in Silence of the Lambs.  One of Lecterís former patients turned victim, Mason Verger (Gary Oldman) now seeks revenge on Lecter.  Once during a drug addled stupor, Verger was influenced to slice hunks of his face off by Lecter who ultimately fed the facial matter to his hound.  Now horrifically disfigured (resembling that of Arseface from the comic Preacher) on intensive care he uses the only thing Lecter cares for to entice Lecter out of seclusion, FBI Agent extraordinaire Clarice Starling (Julianne Moore).

Directed by Ridley Scott, Hannibal doesnít achieve the greatness that is Silence of the Lambs but it definitely is an entertaining extension of the storyline, but not entirely faithful to the book.  Itís cool to see Lecter in his own element, unrestrained from the confines of a mental ward.  Seeing him intimidate Italian Police Inspector Renaldo Pazzi -- a local cop who realizes Lecterís real identity and is working toward obtaining Mason Vergerís reward for capture -- is a real treat to behold.  Pazzi being outmatched meets a demise that will make you appreciate your bowels being housed inside of your body!

Going into this film, itís natural to question the choice of having Julianne Moore reprise the role of Clarice Starling from Jodie Foster.  The truth is itís hard to beat the chemistry that Hopkins and Foster brought to the table in Silence of the Lambs, but very quickly the viewer gets used to the idea of Moore in the role, as she puts off a good performance.  Ray Liotta also pops up for a torturous event that will have you scratching your head as to how the MPAA allowed the scene to stay in the film, all the while Rob Zombie struggled to have House of 1000 Corpses saved from the chopping block.

Even though Hannibal is far from faithful to Harrisís excellent novel of the same name, it was refreshing to see another adventure from cultural icon, Hannibal ďThe CannibalĒ Lecter.

Hannibal is part of The Hannibal Lecter Collection released on Blu-Ray from MGM/Fox.  The film is presented 1.85:1 10:80p with a good looking transfer.  For a rather recent film, one might expect the transfer to really sparkle, but it never really wows you.  It does its job and it an improvement to the DVD resolution-wise, just nothing spectacular.  The audio is presented with English 5.1 DTS-HD Master audio and sounds fine.  Onward to the supplemental features, well there are none!  This is a major disappointment that nothing is included on the disc.  Why couldnít MGM port the extras over from their previous Special Edition 2-disc DVD?  Laziness perhaps?

Overall The Hannibal Lecter Collection on Blu-Ray is recommended as a way of owning all three films in a high definition format.  Even though the only supplemental features to be found are on the Silence of the Lambs disc, the reasonable price tag allows viewers to forgo the lack of extras for the transfers alone.  They are all a relatively marked improvement.  However if you already own these on DVD you might want to wait for possible jam-packed releases in the future.

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Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 16x9 1080p
Audio: English 5.1, DTS-HD Master Audio




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mobiusclimber   | |2013-05-24 03:06:44
I hated this film and this novel and felt that Thomas Harris was simply cashing
a paycheck to turn out dreck starring Hannibal Lecter rather than actually being
influenced to write. The novel is fairly poorly written and Hannibal's dialogue
(the high point of Silence of the Lambs) is generally very weak. In fact, I have
to wonder if the novel wasn't his attempt to make an unfilmable mess so as to
end the Hannibal worship, since he never seems as convincingly suave here as he
does in Silence and the things in the book are so far repugnant that it would be
impossible to root for anyone. The ending in particular was incredibly assinine
and a disservice to the characters he created in Silence. This isn't even
touching on the downright homophobic storyline of "she became a lesbian
because she was molested." Blech!
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