Red Dragon

Rated NR

This occasionally gripping thriller boating one of the greatest serial-killer villains in all filmdom – the truly twisted Francis Dolarhyde, a.k.a the Tooth Fairy. As portrayed by the marvelous Ralph Fiennes, Dolarhyde puts The Silence of the Lambs’ Buffalo Bill to shame in the creepy department. Director Brett Ratner and screenwriter Ted Tally have given the character a deep and complex back story. But Anthony Hopkins’ portrayal of Hannibal Lecter has devolved into a burlesque parody of itself, and the filmmakers seem to have sought out the least appropriate actor they could find to play the FBI agent Will Graham – Edward Norton has done some fine work in the past, but he is too boyish, too innocent, too forlorn to be unconvincing as the grizzled, haunted G-Man. For all its high production values, Red Dragon summons nary an ounce of mood or style. And for better or worse, 1986’s Manhunter (based on the same Thomas Harris novel) had style in spades.

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