Prime Video movie of the day: The Silence of the Lambs is the ultimate cat and mouse thriller

Jodie Foster and Anthony Hopkins in The Silence of the Lambs
(Image credit: MGM)
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You know those movies that just never get old? That's how The Silence of the Lambs feels to me, as it's probably the one title I've seen more than any other and I'm still not sick of it. I've done interactive screenings, late night watches when it airs on TV, and I've sat while someone tattooed a death's-head hawkmoth on my wrist. My passion for this movie is undying, it seems, which is why it absolutely deserves a spot in our best Prime Video movies list.

Jonathan Demme is at the helm of this thriller, based on the book of the same name by Thomas Harris. Prior to this he directed the Talking Heads concert movie Stop Making Sense, which is also one of my favourite live albums of all time. So his legacy is certainly a brilliant one, whether he's making your skin crawl or your toes tap.

THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS (1991) | Official Trailer | MGM - YouTube THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS (1991) | Official Trailer | MGM - YouTube
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As for The Silence of the Lambs, it's a movie that's so iconic you're probably familiar with elements of it even if you haven't seen the whole thing. Whether it's Hannibal Lecter's weird noise, Ted Levine dancing to Goodbye Horses, or that creepy looking poster, it's fully ingrained in pop culture.

The movie follows trainee FBI agent Clarice Starling, a fiercely determined woman in a male-dominated industry who is sent to interview Hannibal Lecter, a psychiatrist locked up in an asylum for killing and cannibalising his victims. He's both suave and scary, a deadly combination. Over time, Starling develops a strange bond with Lecter, as he helps her track down another serial killer nicknamed Buffalo Bill, who has been kidnapping young women in the area.

To say any more would ruin the experience but if you want psychological chills, thrills and mind games, this is a must watch, even just for Jodie Foster and Anthony Hopkins alone.

A battle of wills

The Silence of the Lambs was a huge critical success, winning the 'Big Five' Oscars in 1992: Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Director and Best Writing. It became the third movie in history to do this, following on from It Happened One Night and One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.

Wendy Ide at The Times wrote: "The crux of this excellent thriller is the battle of intellect and wills between them [Clarice Starling and Dr Hannibal Lecter]."

Mark Johnson of Awards Daily added: "Suspenseful and shrewd, Hopkins’ Lecter is one of the most fascinating villains in film (despite less than 20 min of screen time). In spite of his contemptible reproach and steely demeanor, there’s just something about Lecter that makes us root for him."

And Jay Carr of the Boston Globe said: "Jonathan Demme's Silence of the Lambs has everything you want in a popular thriller. It's stylish, intelligent, audacious rather than shocking, and stolen by a suave monster you'll never forget."

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Lucy Buglass
Senior Entertainment Writer

Lucy is a long-time movie and television lover who is an approved critic on Rotten Tomatoes. She has written several reviews in her time, starting with a small self-ran blog called Lucy Goes to Hollywood before moving onto bigger websites such as What's on TV and What to Watch, with TechRadar being her most recent venture. Her interests primarily lie within horror and thriller, loving nothing more than a chilling story that keeps her thinking moments after the credits have rolled. Many of these creepy tales can be found on the streaming services she covers regularly.

When she’s not scaring herself half to death with the various shows and movies she watches, she likes to unwind by playing video games on Easy Mode and has no shame in admitting she’s terrible at them. She also quotes The Simpsons religiously and has a Blinky the Fish tattoo, solidifying her position as a complete nerd.