Too bad this package doesn't include Red Dragon instead of Manhunter. I was actually holding off on purchasing Silence of the Lambs in anticipation of a Hi-Def Hannibal box set, and was excited when I first heard of this package until I read what is actually in it. Bad judgement call on the studio's part I say.
Not "bad judgement," just studio politics. Manhunter, Silence, and Hannibal are all MGM properties. Red Dragon is a Universal property. They aren't going to hold hands for a boxed set and split the profits. Particularly since this boxed set tells the complete story.
I too prefer Red Dragon to Manhunter, but I just wish they released Hannibal solo day/date with the boxed set. Then I could just wait for Red Dragon on Blu-ray as I already bought Silence solo.
Manhunter made me want to fall asleep and take a nap. I'm no fan of Brett Ratner's films, but Red Dragon was awesome, IMO. Any film with Anthony Hopkins is infinitely better than any film with William Petersen. By far...
Since Red Dragon was made by another studio, it's not going to appear in this box. But I have to say that Manhunter is the better movie. Stylistically it could not be a greater contrast with Silence of the Lambs: it's all wide open spaces and sunshine, while SOTL is dark, grim, Gothic. Even Manhunter's Hannibal Lecter is dressed in white, and is imprisoned in a building with white interiors, and large open spaces. Only at the end do we get the darkness and claustrophobia.
It's an interesting contrast; and Red Dragon follows the style of SOTL. Unfortunately, it doesn't say much that hasn't already been said. Manhunter, the earliest film, is fresher and more inventive, and William L. Petersen's performance is excellent. It's also closer to the book.
I think it's strange that it's the 'Hannibal Lecter Anthology' but in 'Manhunter' his name is Hannibal Lecktor, not Lecter.
I love Manhunter and Red Dragon equally for different reasons, it's too bad the studios can't put their politics and greed aside for the sake of art and give the public a complete set at a discount instead of making them hunt around for the other 2 films at full price; especially since this set is aimed at people like me who have bought some of these films multiple times on dvd, vhs, hd-dvd, have seen them in theaters, and if I'm channel surfing and catch the middle of one of them on TBS or TNT, I put the remote away and watch the rest, commercials and all (I think they put subliminal messages on the TNT / TBS version that makes us do so instead of getting up and putting on the dvd instead - they did this with Forrest Gump, Goodfellas, My Cousin Vinnie, The Jack Ryan movies and The Shawshank Redemption too).
I certainly respect those who would prefer Red Dragon to Manhunter. I do think the MGM releases seem to tie togeher a bit better and personally thought that William Peterson was intense in Manhunter as a detective who just doesn't give up. He was also great in To Live and Die in LA (if you like his style of course). He was very different in CSI but a lot of people like that show. Anyhow my main concern is that MGM might use MPEG-2 to transfer the set as they did Silence, whose PQ is not highly regarded, ans well as a number of other titles as recent as 2009 (unbelievable). I can't believe that MGM has used this DVD transfer technology years after the other studios dropped it (early 2007). They were smart enough to allow CBS/FOX to transfer the Bond movies using MPEG-4, which are all fabulous (although they were renewed by Lowry a separate service). Please MGM use CBS/FOX to do this set. If they do it in MPEG-2 I will probably pass because it will eventually have to be re-released - so what out for the reviews before buying!
I have no friends who would choose, "RED DRAGON" over Michael Mann's, "MANHUNTER". The 1986 effort was far superior simply due to the fact that it had WILLIAM PETERSON playing the part of Will Graham, and NOT Edward Norton. I didn't believe Edward Nortons performance for a moment. AWFUL CASTING DECISION!!!! Even when Ed Norton is old and grey he'll still have that baby-face that just doesn't inspire confidence. I've seen other movies of his and have no problems with them. Take, "The Score" for example. My god that was an incredible piece of acting, and an incredible movie!!! But Ed Nortons ability to play Will Graham is miniscule. Peterson's ability to play the role is astounding. My two cents. CKB
Which is why you're putting your two cents in on a thread that's been dead for over a year...
I'm TOTALLY just kidding.
You brought up some great points about the casting of Red Dragon. I'm a fan of both actors, and agree that Peterson is a better casting choice. I didn't have any problems with Norton's performance though, he did a fine job. On the other hand, many of the other performances and casting decisions were much better in Red Dragon. I still love both films.