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Reviewed by: Max - SimplyScripts Reviewer

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Director: Michael Mann
Writer: Michael Mann
Starring: William Peterson as Will Graham
Tom Noonan as Francis Dolarhyde
Dennis Farina as Jack Crawford

Grade: A

The first entree in the Hannibal Lecter series based on the book ‘Red Dragon' by Thomas Harris. Ex-FBI Agent Will Graham (William Peterson) is brought back by his former boss Jack Crawford (Dennis Farina) to investigate the murders of two families. Graham isn't doing to well in the investigation so he goes back to the man who tried to kill him, Hannibal Lecter (Brian Cox), to get the point of view from a real killer.

I've read the book by Thomas Harris and absolutely loved it. One of my favorite novels. So after I read the book I went and saw ‘Red Dragon' the second adaptation of this novel. ‘Red Dragon' disappointed me a little bit. So I heard there was another adaptation of this book and I bought it and watched it. And was I satisfied after I saw it! There's just something about it that makes you want to watch it again and again.

The first thing I loved about it was the cheesy 80's feeling. Michael Mann, who directed this, also created ‘Miami Vice'. I think the mixture of a murder mystery and ‘Miami Vice' is really cool. What more could you ask for? The film is also eye-candy. From beginning to end. All eye-candy. The green backgrounds or the blue lighting. It really adds a certain scariness to it. And let me tell you, it has one of the best endings I have ever seen. With it's kick-ass music and groovy-looking setting. Really cool!

William Peterson gives a really cool performance. The book describes him as a skinny tan dude who seems to be aging quite a bit. I think in ‘Red Dragon' Edward Norton gave a good performance but as much as I love the man I didn't buy him as an ex-FBI Agent. Peterson I really bought as a real tough guy. He's fun to watch. There's a lot of people they could have picked for this role but Peterson was the best pick.

Tom Noonan is a freaky dude. I had only seen him in ‘Last Action Hero' and after I saw him in this I went out and rented a couple of his movies. He really pulled this character off well. He was born for this role. Once again I don't think Ralph Fiennes did a great job at portraying this character in ‘Red Dragon'. Tom Noonan is really convincing as a serial killer. He just can act and look freaky. But he also did an uber job at making you feel really sorry for him.

Brian Cox does great as Lecter. I think what he did so good at it was he actually acted like a regular person. Not the thing Hopkins does, with all that smart talking and all that intelligence. But this time I felt that Hannibal was real. Not just some robot.

A really great a cheesy movie. A blast. With all the great acting and the dark tone. Really fun. If you have only seen ‘Red Dragon' you'll love that movie. But if you've seen both ‘Red Dragon' and ‘Manhunter' you'll find ‘Red Dragon' incredibly lacking.

copyright (c) 2003 Max Colston, used with permission

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