- Actors: Hugh Dancy, Mads Mikkelsen, Caroline Dhavernas, Laurence Fishburne, Gillian Anderson
- Format: Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, Widescreen, Color, NTSC
- Language: English
- Subtitles: English
- Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
- Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
- Number of discs: 3
- Rated: Not RatedNR
- Studio: Lionsgate
- DVD Release Date: September 16, 2014
- Run Time: 561 minutes
- Average Customer Review: 6,323 customer reviews
- ASIN: B00LHVZIT4
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #29,867 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
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Hannibal: Season 2
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The dark and haunting series "Hannibal" returns for a second season, with more shocking revelations and games of psychological cat and mouse. Will Graham (Hugh Dancy) is locked in a mental asylum accused of Hannibal Lecter's crimes (Mads Mikkelsen). Now that Will sees Hannibal for what he truly is, he faces a fight to prove his own sanity and convince those closest to him he is innocent of murder. Jack Crawford (Laurence Fishburne) is dealing with his own feelings about Will, and whether his protege is in fact a cold-blooded killer. Looking for answers, Jack turns to a man he has come to trust: Hannibal Lecter. With Will locked up, Hannibal becomes Jack's new consultant on cases. Hannibal is torn between self-preservation and his desire to keep Will close to him, despite advice from his psychiatrist Bedelia Du Maurier (Gillian Anderson) to stay away. The deadly dance between these characters continues to turn in startling and unexpected ways, in a season that will show nothing can ever be the same again.
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The cinematography is not flashy, it's elegant, beautiful, seamless. It's not "Saw" or "Hostel" mindless gore, it's a Francis Bacon oil painting, structurally wild, disturbing and intriguing to study. Discussable, not disgusting.
The writing isn't predictable, isn't corny, isn't unnecessarily drawn-out to see how many season's they can squeeze out of Thomas Harris's creation. The writing is respectable, clever, three-dimensional.
Watch this show.
The season opens with its most bravura mission statement yet: A fight, possibly to the death, between Lecter and Jack Crawford (still amazingly portrayed by Laurence Fishburne), signifying that Jack finally believes Will Graham (Hugh Dancy) that Hannibal is indeed The Chesapeake Ripper and not Will. Then, at a climactic moment of that fight, the show cuts to several weeks prior to that, beginning a countdown that has viewers on the edges of their seats until that moment actually happens. It's a startling way to begin the season, but it gives the entire show for the rest of the season a sense of urgency for the audience as we asked ourselves, "When is this going to happen?" But so many interesting, provocative and terrible things are happening in the interim as this climax builds that soon we find ourselves forgetting about what's to come, and give ourselves over completely to what's happening in the moment.
If for some reason, any viewer thinks this idea seems like it wouldn't or shouldn't work, you'd be dead wrong.
This season takes the ideas that were already turned on their heads from Fuller's adaptation of Thomas Harris' "Red Dragon" and turns them even further, which, like the wildly popular THE WALKING DEAD, works to the show's benefit because it leaves all sorts of room to deviate from the book. The main themes of this season are becoming and design. There has always been a duality between Will and Hannibal since the very first episode, but this season takes the duality even further into what the characters are becoming, usually by the design of Hannibal and to a much lesser extent by Will. As Will pushes Alana Bloom (Caroline Dhavernas) farther away, he pushes her right into the arms of Hannibal. This is Hannibal's design. Freddie Lounds (Lara Jean Chorostecki) is becoming more and more of an interloper, and may have to be dealt with. This is Will's design. Dr. Chilton (Raul Esparza) is finding himself more and more prideful of his dealings with Will and then with Hannibal. This is Hannibal's design. Newcomer characters of the brother/sister team of Mason and Margot Verger (Michael Pitt and Katherine Isabelle, respectively) both have designs of their own, but are ultimately part of Hannibal's design. The fate of Miriam Lass (Anna Chlumsky) is revealed and is VERY much of Hannibal's design. Hannibal's psychiatrist Bedelia Du Maurier (Gillian Anderson) is trying to help Will. All of these characters are becoming something, even Jack and his wife Bella (Fishburne's real-life bride Gina Torres) are becoming products of Hannibal's design. Every time you think that Will might finally have the upper hand, Hannibal is always several steps ahead. And when we finally do get to the finale, every moment of shock is piled on top of another until you realize that you probably haven't breathed for several minutes.
Under the very imaginative eye of Fuller, and with directors like Peter Medak, Tim Hunter, Guillermo Navarro and David Slade, this is easily the most visually arresting show on television. The composition, the lighting, the depth of focus; all of the intangibles that go into making a television show are all acting in perfect concert. The murders are more grand and more beautiful (which honestly, they really are, if you ignore how horrific they are). The scale of the show has grown, but the majority of all the scenes are either at FBI headquarters, Hannibal's home or office, Will's home and the Psychiatric Hospital, giving the show a very intimate quality.
However good the performances by the supporting cast might be, and they're all pretty damn stunning, the show lives and dies with Mikkelsen and Dancy, who have become so adept at their verbal chess game and seem so comfortable with each other that their relationship seems totally organic, which is something most shows aren't capable of doing. For me, the real tragedy in their relationship is that Hannibal really does care about Will. He wants Will to choose to be his friend. There's an innate sadness within Hannibal that Mikkelsen is able to flesh out and for the first time in this character's history, he's not just likable; he's sympathetic, and that's a huge testament to their relationship in the show.
This show really is a niche show, but it has been growing steadily in popularity because of how amazing the show is, signifying yet again that with shows like HANNIBAL, BREAKING BAD, TRUE DETECTIVE, THE AMERICANS, GAME OF THRONES, LOUIE, JUSTIFIED, SHERLOCK, MASTERS OF SEX, HOMELAND and ORPHAN BLACK, we are living once again in a new television renaissance. And HANNIBAL is easily near the top of the best shows currently of this age.
The highlights for myself were the semi-faithful fate of Mason Verger and his cohorts, the pigs(they're back....), the serial killer with the metal animal suit he created, and the other killer with the thing for horses; The actor who plays Verger channels Gary Oldman perfectly, yet still manages to add his own menace to the character in addition to all its pre-existing qualities; the teardrop kleenex in the martinis is just a cool little detail. And of course, there are all the things you don't see coming, such as the fates, appearances, and disappearances of certain characters. And there's a final scene at the end that only leaves you wondering where the show will take you next season, esp. if it continues on it's roughly faithful story structure.
However, make no mistake: This show is brutal when intended too be, and the violence could be considered excessive and gratuitous by some; I actually find that part of the attraction in some ways, but I was also raised on horror stuff starting w/the old Hammer Horror Film, so it pretty much rolls off me; In many ways, this show is like 'True Detective' in the violence and morbid imagery department, only turned up to 11. Horror enthusiasts will enjoy the 'creative violence', and if you've seen 'Hostel', this won't give you any problems...
The 3 phrases muttered most before hitting the rewind button were 'Oh...No Way!!!', 'Oh My God' or 'Holy S***!!!'(not necessarily in that order...).
And so, to answer my review title question(a question muttered by Hannibal in one episode...): No, there is nothing wrong here. This show just excels at everything it does, and then some. Sometimes you have to remind yourself this is actually on a network station. I prefer watching them on disc though, since there is no destroyed momentum w/that whole 'commercial' thing. The blu-ray looks amazing here too. It is overall impressive beyond expectations. You don't say that much with network TV anymore, and it is certainly even rarer you say it when someone tackles an iconic series in a genre like this. It is so great to see someone gets it so right on occasion.
Most recent customer reviews
With the subtitles on, Season 2, Episode 1, when Bloom is hypnotizing Graham.Read more