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HANNIBAL

Following the Last Supper, Hannibal sacrifices part of himself to bring freedom, Clarice assumes a crucified position and Hannibal ascends into the heavens. The connections to the story of Jesus abound.
-Review by David Bruce



(2001)


This page was created on January 18, 2001
This page was last updated on May 29, 2005

Click to enlargeDirected by Ridley Scott
Novel: Thomas Harris
Screenplay: David Mamet Steven Zaillian

Anthony Hopkins .... Dr. Hannibal Lecter
Julianne Moore .... Clarice Starling
Giancarlo Giannini .... Rinaldo Pazzi
Francesca Neri .... Laura Pazzi
Alex Corrado .... Piero Falcione
Diane Baker .... Senator Ruth Martin
Frankie Faison .... Barney the Orderly
Click to enlargeZeljko Ivanek .... Dr. Cordell Doemling
Spike Jonze .... Donnie Barber
Boyd Kestner .... Agent M?ndez
Ray Liotta .... Paul Krendler
Ivano Marescotti .... Carlo Deogracias
Gary Oldman .... Mason Verger

Produced by Dino De Laurentiis, Martha Schumacher
Original music by Klaus Badelt (additional music) Hans Zimmer
Cinematography by John Mathieson
Film Editing by Pietro Scalia

Rated R for strong gruesome violence, some nudity and language.


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REVIEW BY DAVID BRUCE
Web Master HollywoodJesus.com

Break The Silence
Based on the sequel novel by Thomas Harris
to the 1991 Oscar-winning thriller "The Silence of the Lambs".

THE CHARACTERS AND GENERAL PLOT
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Click to enlargeTHE BOOGIE MAN
The movie takes up where the previous 1991 film, "The Silence of the Lambs", left off. The brilliant yet psychotic Dr. Hannibal 'The Cannibal' Lecter helped young FBI agent Clarice Starling track down and apprehend a dangerous serial killer from his prison cell. Hannibal also managed to escape and flee the country. His escape was through an unforgettable scene of incarnation. He literally dressed himself in another person's skin, taking on that identity. If Jesus is the incarnation of God, Hannibal is the incarnation of the Boogie Man.
Click to enlargeTHE BOOGIE MAN'S HEAVEN
Now under the assumed name of Dr. Fell, Hannibal has become curator of an art museum in Florence where he relaxes and hardly kills anyone. His alias is aptly chosen from Tom Brown's 17th century epigram: "I do not love thee, Dr. Fell, The reason why I cannot tell; But this alone I know full well, I do not love thee, Dr. Fell." Indeed. How ever charming he may be, we do not like him, though we may not immediately know the reason why.
Silke Force (editor) note:

John Fell: 1625-86, English clergyman.

He was dean of Christ Church, Oxford, and bishop of Oxford. While at Oxford, he initiated an extensive building program and promoted the development of the Oxford Univ. Press. His chief literary work was his critical edition (1682) of St. Cyprian. He is probably best remembered today as the subject of Tom Brown's jingle "I do not love thee, Dr. Fell, The reason why I cannot tell; But this alone I know full well, I do not love thee, Dr. Fell."

Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein
Abbott and Costello are stewards aboard an ocean liner. Onboard they meet up with a mysterious scientist named Dr. Fell. Dr. Fell runs a wax museum in New York City where he is hiding the bodies of the Frankenstein monster, The Wolf Man, and Count Dracula. Dr. Fell has stolen the secret of re-animation from the Baroness Von Frankenstein.

THE JUDAS CHARACTER
Click to enlargeAn Italian cop, Pazzi, chances upon Lecter's real identity. He further discovers that one of Hannibal's victims -- Mason Verger (the only one to survive) -- has posted a 3,000,000 dollar reward for Hannibal's capture. The amount is significant -- Judas betrayed Jesus for 30 pieces of silver. Both numbers are multiples of 3 and 10.

Matthew 26:15 "Judas said, 'What will you give me if I hand him over to you?' They settled on thirty silver pieces. " (Message Translation)

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THE SATAN CHARACTER
Mason Verger is a demented frightening creature. He is wealthy. He is also an unrepentant molester, who sexually abused his sister as a young man. He underwent psychotherapy with Lecter, who left him both paralyzed and badly disfigured. Verger has a collection of wild pigs and plots ways to capture and feed Hannibal alive to these flesh eating beasts.

THE SACRIFICIAL LAMB
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CL(e)AR-ICE STAR-ling
FBI agent Clarice Starling survives an FBI shoot-out gone wrong. Her nemesis, power hungry Paul Krendler, points the blame directly at her and she is soon on suspension. Click to enlargeWhat she doesn't realize is that Verger has paid Paul to set her up. Verger needs Clarice as bait to lure Lecter out into the open, capturing him, so he can exact his terrifying revenge. Clarice plays the part of the sacrificial lamb. She is falsely accused, despised and rejected by those she serves ? a woman of sorrows, acquainted with bitterest grief.

Isaiah 53:3 "He was despised and rejected?a man of sorrows, acquainted with bitterest grief. We turned our backs on him and looked the other way when he went by. He was despised, and we did not care."

THE DISTORTED CHRIST FIGURE
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In "Silence of the Lambs," emphasis was placed on the incarnational aspects of Hannibal. In "Hannibal" the emphasis is on eating the flesh. There are some interesting -- but distorted -- connections between Jesus Christ and Hannibal Lecter here:

1. Silence Of The Lamb. The Biblical passage Acts 8:32 in reference to Jesus Christ reads: "As a sheep led to slaughter, and quiet as a lamb being sheared, He was silent, saying nothing. (Message Translation)

2. Incarnation. [Latin: incarnation, being or taking flesh], Its theological use derives from the Latin version of John 1:14: "And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth." God took on human flesh (incarnation) and became Jesus Christ. (Living Translation)

3. Eating Flesh. John 6:53: "So Jesus said again, 'I assure you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you cannot have eternal life within you.'" (Living Translation) The difference here is that Hannibal eats other people, Jesus invites us to eat his flesh.

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THE MYSTICAL TOUCH
Hannibal's touch of Clarice's hair has a chilling spiritual quality to it --almost God like.

THE JUDAS CONNECTION
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THE BETRAYAL
Italian cop, Pazzi, betrays Hannibal for a 3,000,000 dollar reward. The amount is significant -- Judas betrayed Jesus for 30 pieces of silver. Again, both numbers are multiples of 3 and 10.
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THE LECTER LECTURE
As incredible as it may seem, Hannibal gives a lecture about Judas just before he kills Pazzi.

Click to enlargeTHE DEATH OF THE JUDAS
The Bible gives two accounts of Judas' death. Matthew 27:5 "Judas threw the silver coins into the Temple and left. Then he went out and hung himself." Acts 1:18 "Falling headlong, he burst open in the middle and all his bowels gushed out." (Message Translation)

Click to enlargeClick to enlargeTHE HANGING OF THE JUDAS
In the film Pazzi is hung and his bowels gush forth.
THE ARREST, CRUCIFIXION AND RESURRECTION
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THE CAPTURE
The capture of Hannibal has connections to the arrest of Jesus.
John 18:2-5 --"Judas, his betrayer, knew the place because Jesus and his disciples went there often. So Judas led the way to the garden, and the Roman soldiers and police sent by the high priests and Pharisees followed. They arrived there with lanterns and torches and swords. Jesus, knowing by now everything that was coming down on him, went out and met them. He said, "Who are you after?" They answered, "Jesus the Nazarene." He said, "That's me." The soldiers recoiled, totally taken aback." (Message Translation)
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HANNIBAL IS CRUCIFIED FOR THE FEAST
Click to enlargeMason Verger's plan is to place Hannibal in a cruciform and feed him to the wild pigs.

Matthew 26:2 "Ye know that after two days is the feast of the Passover, and the Son of man is betrayed to be crucified." (Kings James)
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THE RESURRECTION
Following the death on the cross, Jesus, the sacrificial lamb, rose from the dead. In the film FBI agent Clarice Starling, the sacrificial lamb, is wounded and is resurrected from "death".

1 Peter 1:19: "He paid with Christ's sacred blood, you know. He died like an unblemished, sacrificial lamb." Rev. 5:6: "So I looked, and there, surrounded by Throne, Animals, and Elders, was a Lamb, slaughtered but standing tall (resurrected)..." (Message Translation)

THE LAST SUPPER
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HAVING PAUL FOR DINNER.
The other betrayer in the film is the sexist Paul Krendler, Clarice's antagonist. Hannibal -- out of 'love' for Clarice (?) -- drugs Paul, opens his skull, and feeds him part of his own brain. It is Clarice's last supper with Hannibal.

Matthew 26:26-28: "During the meal, Jesus took and blessed the bread, broke it, and gave it to his disciples: "Take, eat. This is my body." [27] Taking the cup and thanking God, he gave it to them: "Drink this, all of you. [28] This is my blood, God's new covenant poured out for many people for the forgiveness of sins."

Christians pose several different possibilities for what Christ meant when he said, ?This is my body.?
(1) Some believe that the wine and bread actually become Christ?s physical blood and body (the doctrine of Transubstantiation).
(2) Others believe that the bread and wine remain unchanged, but Christ is spiritually present with the bread and wine.
(3) Still others believe that the bread and wine symbolize Christ?s body and blood. Christians generally agree, however, that participating in the Lord?s Supper is an important element in the Christian faith and that Christ?s presence, however we understand it, strengthens us spiritually.

SACRIFICE, CRUCIFIXION AND ASCENSION
Click to enlargeAN INTERESTING ENDING
Following the Last Supper, Hannibal sacrifices part of himself to bring freedom,Click to enlarge Clarice assumes a crucified position and Hannibal ascends into the heavens (via an airplane). The connections to the story of Jesus abound.

Acts 1:9 "These were his last words. As they watched, he was taken up and disappeared in a cloud." (Message Translation)

PHOTO GALLERY
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I WISH I KNEW
Subject: Hannibal
Date: Mon, 24 Sep 2001
From: Shim

Disturbing, I wish I would have known more before I saw it. I have seen wicked things that I am embarrassed by but this is beyond the pale. Truly beyond having Christian commitment anyone who considers himself or herself part of the human race should be disgusted this was made. The people who made this movie should be disgusted.

BOOK BETTER THAN THE MOVIE
Subject: Hannibal
Date: Mon, 13 Aug 2001
From: "bsprolr"

first off i would like to address those who took offense to the relation between Christ and Hannibal... i'm quite certain (from what i read) that david was simply pointing out similarities, its purely for entertainment, i found them quite fascinating, especially the judas section. Though i was dissapointed with certain parts of the movie, the book was certainly better, even the ending which was really the movies ruination... the ending for the book was much more interesting and typical (i wont give it away for those who havent read it)

BIBLE NOT ALLOWED
Subject: Comments on comparison
Date: Sat, 12 May 2001
From: "John DeVore"

It is not all that suprising that you could find all of these similarities. If you want to try, you could probably find similarities in just about anything. In fact, my comp 2 teacher told us that we were not allowed to compare any of the literary works we read to the gospels because it's been done so much. In my own experiance, the Bible can be used to defend any point of view at all. In fact, Marilyn Manson uses it frequently. Reviews like this just seem kinda silly to me.
John DeVore

Response: So your Comp 2 teacher does not allow you to use the Bible? Interesting? The very foundation of our very culture and our traditional understandings center on the Bible. Over used? Hmm. Most people are biblical illiterate. It seems your teacher wants to impose censorship on certain reference material (the Bible). More curious is that you bought into this. NEVER allow anyone to impose any form of censorship on you. I would guess that the dictionary is used more even than the Bible in your school. Should it be banned? And, your logic, regarding Maryln Manson's use of the Bible seems to suggest that we should not use the Bible as a reference tool at all. Has your teacher made you into a censorship lover? Challenge your teacher! Question authority! -David

REGARDING MATT'S COMMENT
Subject: Regarding Hannibal Comment
Date: Mon, 30 Apr 2001
From: Michael

I just feel as though a man who eats people, lusts after women, has perverted discussions, and is basically a tool of the wicked has no comparison to a blamelmess, loving Savior who died to give us freedom..."

I think that the symolism that has been put with the movie is right on track. Not even considering the symolism though, you can totally put it into comparison with Jesus. These are the kind of people that Jesus prefered to be around (the perveted, dishonest, lustfull, and tools of wickedness).

CLOSING SCENE
Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2001
From: Michael

The closing scene was one of the most hilarious I have ever seen!

AGREES WITH MATT
Subject: I have to agree with MATT
Date: Thu, 5 Apr 2001
From: "Dan Laskowski"

David I have to agree with Matt! I must admit that I didn't see "HANNIBAL" but I have a very hard time comparing a cannibal with Jesus Christ ! All of the other PARRALLELS that you drew with the "Christ story" (new testament) put chills down my spine.
Dan Laskowski
http://jesuspop.com

Response: You have comment on a film you have not seen? Well, whatever. Like it or not the parrallels are there. -David

PILATE IN HANNIBAL
Date: Thu, 29 Mar 2001
From: Darren

It's been awhile since I been to Hollywood Jesus, but since I did see this film, I was crusing by and I noticed the writeup.

I too found all the religious (or should I say sacriligious) material in the film; but while I wasn't grossed out by The Brain eating scene . I found it silly and borderline camp. Since this film dragged in my view, it was more easier to see all the Christ like references.

Indeed, In "Silence" one of guards was erected in a Crucified position, and in the novel and the film, Lecter referered to his painting of 'what the repentant thief really got after Jesus promised him paradise. Let's do more backtracking. In "Manhunter" a.k.a "Red Dragon" -this is the third film featuring Lector, as there are three books- Lector gives a speech about "God dropping a roof over the heads of churchgoers..."

Now, let's get back to Hannibal.

I took the Hannibal character to be more of an 'anti-christ' figure. As for the cop being like Judas, I totally agree since it was made a big issue of.

HOWEVER, you ommitted an oddity in such character. After setting up a thug to get ID from Lector, the officer then acts more like Pilate than Judas when he washes his bloody hands in the fountain. I'm surprised you missed that.

Response: This is why I post comments. There is so much in films, it takes more than one person to discuss it. -David

ABOUT THE SWINE
Subject: Hey, what about those 'unclean' swine??
Date: Wed, 21 Mar 2001
From: RevKat in OKC

I'm so often looking for the Christ figure it's my weekly cine-Christian "where's Waldo" adventure) in contemporary film as a preaching vehicle--your site is a gold mine!

I very much enjoyed your thoughts about Hannibal--my husband and I both felt there was a highly 'spiritual' feel to the movie. So--what about those FLESH EATING SWINE! Jesus came to proclaim that it's ok for the righteous to eat ritually unclean animals--so there isn't there a gleeful irony in justifying the feeding of all those spiritually unclean bad guys to those ceremonially polluted pigs?
Shalom, RevKat in OKC

SILENCE OF LAMB BETTER
Subject: Dissappointed
Date: Thu, 15 Mar 2001
From: Melissa

I thought Silence of the Lambs was a lot more interesting and kept you on the edge of your seat.. Hannibal I felt was not all what people claim it to be. I say wait for it to come out on video. It did have a few gorey parts but other than that you will be sitting in the movies for over 2 hours wondering when it will end.

SEEING JESUS
Subject: Interesting views!
Date: Sat, 17 Mar 2001
From: "Jeremy Filmer"

Having read the book(unfortunately I haven't seen the film yet) I was amazed at the comparisons you found between an evil, twisted character like Dr. Hannibal 'the cannibal' Lecter. I am, like many other readers it would seem, a little undecided about the truth behind these connections you make. But it is unfair to say you are wrong. Everyone is entitled to their own views, and may yours help people to see Christ in film, which many non-Christians enjoy.
Yours in Christ John

Response: Thank you for being gracious in your comment

BLOOD
Date: Thu, 8 Mar 2001
From: David in NC

While I am not ready to swallow the wholesale notion of Hannibal as a Christ figure, the use of blood as a means of salvation, deliverance, and justice are evident in the film. Blood figures prominently in Starling's "deliverance" from routine in the opening sequence. Blood (and flesh) are sacramental in some strange way to Hannibal. (Note the chillingly playful evil with which he led Verger to feed his own flesh to the dog. I am reminded of Jesus' encounter with the Canaanite woman.) Perversely, Verger's "self-giving" leads to an insincere confession of Jesus' lordship. I believe that Thomas Harris (and the screenwriters) hold up a mirror to the Christian faith. "Hannibal" is the story of a messiah figure as viewed through a fun-house mirror. As a Christian I have to ask myself, "Is this a mockery of THE messiah story, or is it harmless piffle that toys with that story in a squeamishly imaginative way?"

BTW, great website! I've put it on my "favorite list"
David in NC

COMMENTS ON CANNIBALISM
Date: Fri, 02 Mar 2001 21:52:17 -0500
From: Paula

Mr. Bruce:
I probably should not send an e-mail with comments about Hannibal because I have not seen the movie, and it really isn't fair to comment on something that I have not viewed. Not to mention that this is a site for movie reviews and not necessarily a soap box for personal opinions. Nevertheless, I am an American and few things stop us Americans from voicing our opinions, so here goes.

My first reaction to the idea of this movie was disgust. Why would people (especially those who profess Christ) go in droves to see a movie about eating our fellow human beings? I had no tolerance whatsoever for anyone who would want to see this movie. My first reaction was that the apostle Paul counseled us in Philippians, "...whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things." The subject matter of the movie Hannibal did not seem to fit the description of what Paul advises.

I felt fairly self-righteous about this, and was ready to preach fiery sermons in the lobbies of movie theaters (despite the fact that I do not have any theological credentials). Any way, I decided to pray about this. I asked God, "Why would people (Christians or otherwise) want to see a movie about cannibalism? God answered.

I was led to an excellent article in the March 2, 2001, issue of The Chronicle of Higher Education entitled, "Celluloid Cannibals that Feed Our Darkest Fears," by Mikita Brottman. This article outlines the history of cannibalism as a popular theme in cinema beginning in 1908 and also mentions some of the traditional folk and fairly tales that involve cannibalism such as Jack and the Beanstalk and Hansel and Gretel. (By the way, I enjoyed these stories as a child). I would highly recommend this article to those who appreciate scholarly analysis.

I was also led to your web site and found the comments helpful. I am less self-righteous now (at least for the moment). I will still not go to see this movie because I simply do not enjoy this kind of subject matter. However, I am more open now to what God may communicate to Christians as they watch this film. I believe that the Holy Spirit is our ever-present teacher who uses everything that we experience to teach us his lessons. Perhaps there is some merit in considering the darker side of human nature. We certainly need to be aware that it exists with a willingness to confront it in ourselves. Perhaps this film will be an opportunity for reflection. It would seem to be a fitting theme for Lent.

I admire your open-mindedness and have learned from it. Thank you for this opportunity to share my thoughts.
Paula
(Please do not publish my e-mail address.)

CONNECTION TO CHRIST
Subject: the connection
Date: Fri, 02 Mar 2001
From: Glen in Sydney

Of course Hannibal is connected to Christ - as we all are - in our common humanity. That is the whole point of God becoming human! To connect with us sinners, he debases himself and dies shamed, naked and alone on a cross. Many humans imagine themselves to be God-like - not least Christians who stand in judgement on each other. There is only one judge...

[Many Bible scriptures I could quote, Romans 3:21-24 But now apart from the law, a righteousness of God has been revealed, being testified by the law and the prophets; even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ to all and on all those who believe. For there is no distinction, for all have sinned, and fall short of the glory of God; being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus..."]
Glen in Sydney

THIS IS AN EXPLORATION OF DANTE'S INFERNO
Subject: Hannibal review
Date: Thu, 1 Mar 2001
From: Stephanie

I've read your interesting breakdown of Hannibal using the Christ story as a frame. You are however only partially correct. Hannibal is in fact based on a great piece of Christian writing, The Divine Comedy by Dante Alligheiri. Clarice represents Beatrice, Dante's great dead love who inspires him to journey through hell and back in order to learn humilty and join her in heaven. In fact all of Thomas Harris's novels are an exploration of Dante's Inferno using a reverse technique and drawing on all his works. Il Convivio, La Vita Nuova, Il Vulgaris Eloquenta, and Il Monarchie. The Judas lecture that Hannibal gives is from the Inferno and Hannibal applying for a job as the Director of the Capponi Library, the leading depository for Dante's work.
Thank you, Stephanie

Response: WOW! I like the way you think. I would love to have coffee with you sometime. Thank you for taking the time to write. You're comments are a great addition. -David

DAVID IS POLLUTED AND UNHOLY
Date: Wed, 28 Feb 2001
From:
Jon Rush North Carolina

I am basically appalled by the comparison of Hannibal to anything to do with a Holy and just God. I am not at all interested in "finding Jesus" in the movies of Hollywood. I find the real Jesus in scripture and I believe it is a lie to deceive younger Christians into believing that God, Jesus, or Satan are anything like the characters portrayed in a sick and twisted movie such as this. If you want to talk about the movie and how our culture has no real idea what the word holiness means but thrive off of garbage, then I think you have a worthy subject. We are called to be salt and light, set apart, be holy for I'm holy, these and other commands, not suggestions, are mentioned throughout scripture and yet like a dog we return to the vomit all the time. The witness of Jesus was that He interacted with the scum and sinners of the world, not that He participated in there practices. Please don't take this as a total slam, but come on, the God I fell in love with demands that our faculties be cleansed and we purify ourselves of the corruption of this world system. God doesn't need to reveal Himself through smut to a lost world. The work of the Holy Spirit is not like that at all.
Jon Rush North Carolina

Response: Okay, Okay, so I am polluted by the "worldly system." Oh well. Too bad. But I like the way I think. I would not trade it for any other way. I am glad to be "set apart" in a different way. I am curious, how do you walk out the front door of your house with so much "pollution" out there? -David

"WHEN I MENTION THE NAME OF GOD YOU LOOK AWAY!"
Date: Tue, 27 Feb 2001
From: Ryan Donald

I have read the reviews and think that they are very accurate. I must say that I truly respect your site for making something positive out of many evil movies. I really liked the Judas references, but was discouraged to see that no one had touch on the comment by Mason Verger. " You can look at my face, but when I mention the name of God, you look away." I believe it was something like that. I think that you could use that by saying that Mason was delivered, to Christ, by many of Dr. Lectors actions, but because he could not let go of the past, Satan used them to corrupt his mind. I see many people struggeling with this today, and believe this could be a great example for youth workers to use. I hope to see this talked about.
In Christ, Ryan Donald
North Greenville College Greenville,SC

Response: Oops I forgot that choice little line. I thought it was worth the price of admission. I am surprised I didn't mention it, too. -David

FOR SPIRITUAL CINEASTES
Subject: "Rapture", "Hannibal", "Dekalog" and more
Date: Tue, 27 Feb 2001
From: Ciao

Well, finally a site that explores spiritual issues in modern film. Here's some bait: Any thinking Christian/spiritual person MUST watch all ten episodes of Krystof Kieslowki's ("Blue", "White" "Red") THE DECALOGUE. It's ten one hour movies, each handsomely crafted and exceedingly thoughful. Every chapter takes one of the Ten Commandments in a mediatative and back-door way. Believe me, you will be knocked out by "Thou Shall Not Kill" and "Thou Shall Not Commit Adultery - A Short Film About Love". I'd be every anxiously to hear from anyone about the episode "Keep the Sabbath Day Holy". These films are required viewing for cineastes and anyone concerned with spiritual thought in modern cinema.

I can't seem to find any reference herein to the mesmerizing and troubling film by Michael Tolkin from 1991 with Mimi Rogers, "The Rapture". This too is a must see, a deft film which goes so far as to employ the style and structure of a mid-70s 'religious' film (those well intended but poorly done kind) to confront believers head-on with the fallout from 'literalist interpretation' of sciprture. It really has much more to do with the Culture of Narcissism in a way, but it's a great study of what happens when the 'Righteous God' gets funnelled through the Mind of a person who can't find their own limits and tries to interpret scripture without an understanding of their own hidden drives and conflicts.. A touching, brilliant film by one of Hollywood's more thoughtful writer-directors.

Finally, per pop culture, "Hannibal" has some choice remarks about the envy that is rampant in our culture of Greed, and it's fun - in a juvenile way -to watch Lecter feed the greedy and hateful to the pigs, but I guess it's all lost in the shock tactics the film employs to rake in big bucks. The final brain-eating scene (making the misogynist homophobe cop eat his own 'thoughts') is too over the top, deforms the film, and relegates it to sort of a Gucci Chainsaw Massacre.

As for "Left Behind" and that whole spate of Cloud Ten films, well, however well-intended, these give Christianity/spirituality a cheesy profile.
Ciao!
NO E MAIL PLEASE

Response: I like the way you think! Wanna go to the movies sometime? You would make a great cinema friend! -David

WHY ARE SO MANY CHRISTIANS CONCERNED?
Date: Tuesday 02/27/2001
From: Robert J Kennedy rjkennedy7@visto.com

I'm a first timer and have just finished reading the comments referring to Hannibal. Interesting. So far, so good, but out of curiosity, why are so many "christians" so concerned with whether or not there is symbolism between Hannibal and Judas, or Christ? Regardless of the inferred symbolism, is it not a way to involve others (non christian) with the opportunity for imparting our own Christianity? Are we not told to share our faith at every opportunity? If so, then rejoice in the fact that many will come to know more about Christ because of the dipiction in this movie of Anthony Hopkins to whatever biblical character he chooses to represent.

COMMENT REGARDING HANNIBAL
Subject: Hannibal
Date: Mon, 26 Feb 2001
From: Matt Queens, NY

Hello Sir, While I truly admire this website in how you find spiritual connections in movies and totally respect your beliefs in Jesus as I am too a christian, I was really disgusted to see a comparison of Hannibal to Jesus. While I know you weren't comparing them as though they are the same, there is no connection to Jesus what so ever. Hannibal was a sick and demented character in the movie, and there is nothing God-like about him. The spiritual connection I found in the movie was that "the love of money is the route of all evil". Dr. Fell who claimed to have found salvation through Jesus suffered the consequences of his actions for still holding onto that desire of money. Also there was a murder regarding Judas, which was true. BUT THERE WAS AND SHOULDN'T HAVE BEEN ANY COMPARISON OF JESUS TO HANNIBAL. I hope and pray you realize where I'm coming from. Continue with the work on this page, I still admire your work. God bless you.
Matt Queens, NY

Response: To say there is no connection would be dishonest. -David

Reply to response:
Subject: Comment Regarding Hannibal
Date: Tue, 27 Feb 2001
From: Matt
I just feel as though a man who eats people, lusts after women, has perverted discussions, and is basically a tool of the wicked has no comparison to a blamelmess, loving Savior who died to give us freedom. I have no anger against you, it is just I feel this connection is a little overboard.
In Him, Matt

Response; Of course Matt. But your comments studiously avoid the connections that are there. You are avoidling something. What are you afraid of? Be free my friend. -David

EVERYMAN HANNIBAL
Subject: Everyman Hannibal
Date: Tue, 20 Feb 2001
From: Ryan Parker

I have been checking the website frequently since "Hannibal" was released. For a while I thought the film would not be reviewed. Thankfully, it has been. Some of my thoughts on the movie: Hannibal is an evil everyman. That is to say no matter how cultured and civilized we become, humans are still capable of horrifying violence. And though his actions are certainly extreme, wouldn't all of us like to see the "free range rude" get some comeuppance? Hannibal is somewhat heroic in this movie in this sense. He nevers butchers the innocent and, in the end, sacrifices himself for Clarice. Why? Love? Respect? Both? Clarice is a character who has unbending loyalty to her own ethics. She protects the doctor against the vigilante justice of Mason Verger. Not because Hannibal doesn't deserve to suffer but because this is wrong. Clarice serves as the moral center of the movie. She strives for justice for Hannibal while fighting the injustice done to her through the FBI. Because her actions and decisions are determined by her ethics, she can live with them.
Ryan Parker

HANNIBAL RETURNS!
Date: Sun, 11 Feb 2001
From: Gary S. Orlando

I saw "Hannibal" this evening and all I can say is WOW-what a movie. I am sure that every one by now knows the plot and has heard about the final scene. I will not comment on that. This film is very stylish in it's direction with superb on-location shots of Italy. I will have to say that it is not for the skittish in places, but it is also not the all-out bloodbath that I had read about in some reviews. Sir Antony Hopkins did a wonderful job as Hannibal and Julianne Moore did a fine job of filling the shoes of Jodie Foster. As for the spiritual connections, some interesting role reversals as far as the good characters getting the short end of the stick and the bad guys getting away. There was an interesting scene of Hannibal in a cross- like position about to be sacrificed and some Judas symbolism. Anyway, to sum up my ramblings, I did enjoy the film for the artist qualities. I will be interested in reading other peoples gleanings.
Gary S. Orlando

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