Episode 27: The Silence of the Lambs
This Week’s Film: The Silence of the Lambs
From Netflix: In this pulse-pounding adaptation of Thomas Harris’s novel, FBI trainee Clarice Starling ventures into a maximum-security asylum to pick the diseased brain of Hannibal Lecter, a psychiatrist turned homicidal cannibal. Starling needs clues to help her capture a serial killer; unfortunately, her Faustian relationship with Lecter soon leads to his escape and now, two deranged killers are on the loose.
- Roger Ebert’s Review
- Buy the movie!
- Read the book!
- Read the book on your Kindle!
- Read the book on your Nook!
- Read the book with your ears!
Scott Properly Answers Loren’s Question
When Loren asked me about the relevance horror films have in today’s society, I didn’t have a great answer for him. Now, having had a bit of time, I’ve been able to come up with two theories:
- Horror films can provide a sense of justice. If you watch the news or if you have friends who like to share every disturbing news report they find, then you know monsters like Buffalo Bill and Hannibal Lecter are real. Far too often, all we hear about are the abductions and the murders. Every once and a while, we’re also “treated” to the guilty party also being sentenced to life imprisonment — but, depending on the crimes, there may be little satisfaction to be had. Movies such as Silence of the Lambs allow us to champion the rookie detective who is able to track down the killer and make him or her pay for their crimes — often in a bloody and visceral way. Knowing that in their final moments the monsters feel fear and pain can be incredibly satisfying to a hurting and angry audience.
- We like to be horrified. I have some friends who would strongly disagree with the previous sentence, but it’s hard to argue with. Two thousand years ago, we would gather in the Colosseum to watch wild animals tear apart people we didn’t like. It was sport. It was entertainment. Today, sit in darkened theaters watching monsters tear apart people we don’t like. It’s horrifying. We squirm. We shield our eyes and lose our appetite. But we don’t stop doing it. We’ve been doing it for thousands of years. There’s clearly a part of us that, quite simply, enjoys it.