Directed by Michael Mann
Produced by Richard Roth
Photography by Dante Spinotti
Cast: William Petersen, Kim Greist, Joan Allen, Brian Cox, Dennis Farina, Stephen Lang & Tom Noonan
1986/121 mins/Color/5.1 DD
2.35:1 anamorphic/English/US/NTSC Region 1
Review from the Anchor Bay DVD
Before everyone discovered Hannibal Lector in the multi-oscar winning film THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS in 1991, a little and unfortunately mostly unknown film was released five years earlier about Hannibal "The Cannibal". This film was called MANHUNTER and was based on Thomas Harris' novel, Red Dragon. Thanks to Anchor Bay Entertainment MANHUNTER might finally get the recognition it deserved.
Former FBI agent Will Graham (William Peterson in one of his best role) left the duty because he was attacked by Dr. Hannibal Lecktor (the name was written differently at the time) while capturing the cannibal and as a result suffered mental illness. When his former boss needs him to find a new serial killer, dubbed the "Tooth Fairy", Graham fells like he has to take part in the investigation, much to the displease of his wife. Unfortunately, Graham will have to face Dr. Hannibal Lecktor one more time, as he is the only man who might be able to help him find this "Tooth Fairy". Graham decides to go to the scenes of the last crimes and tries to think like the killer did to find clues. It seemed that according to Lecktor, Graham might not be too different from him and other serial killers which is why he has great capabilities of catching them.
Michael Mann delivered one very intense thriller with a great cast, nice characters development and a very story involving film. The way Graham finds the clues and answers are believable and makes the whole film much more enjoyable. You can clearly feel that the film was made back in the 80's especially because of the clothes they are wearing, it reminded me of the Miami Vice tv show a lot and much to my surprise I recently found out that Michael Mann actually created Miami Vice!! Tom Noonan as the "Tooth Fairy" is both creepy and intense while Brian Cox gives a great performance as Dr. Hannibal Lecktor which Anthony Hopkins took to another level in THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS but failed to bring the same magic in HANNIBAL. Apart from the god awful Phil Collins like song at the end, I really digged the soundtrack. One of the strongest element of the film is without a doubt the superb Dario Argento like photography by Dante Spinotti. The photography has heavy color separation and coloration which make some stunning and gorgeous scenes.
The film is presented in its original 2.35:1 ratio. The film has been given a new THX certified anamorphic widescreen and looks simply amazing! There is no compression or artifacts, the darker scenes are well rendered and the colors are rich and vibrant, way to go Anchor Bay! In the audio department we get a very good 5.1 Dolby Digital track which gives the film even more atmosphere and a very good 2.0 Dolby Surround track. Both are in English.
In the extras department we get a rather miserable trailer which is presented in a 2.35:1 ratio. There is two featurettes; the first one called "The Manhunter look" which is a very interesting 10 minutes talk with director of photography Dante Spinotti. The second featurette called "Inside Manhunter" is a great 18 minutes documentary with interviews with cast members William Petersen, Joan Allen, Brian Cox and Tom Noonan. There is also very detailed bios on Michael Mann, WIliam Petersen, Brian Cox and Tom Noonan. The film is separated in 30 chapters, comes with an inlay card with the chapters stop on one side and poster on the other. The menus have some animations and music but nothing spectacular. The DVD comes in the usual Anchor Bay keep case. By the way, Anchor Bay also issued MANHUNTER in a 2 DVD set limited edition with the director's cut on the other disc and more extras. And rereleased it in 2003 with a new transfer at the time when the remake, RED DRAGON came out.
Thanks to Anchor Bay
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Review by Kim Dubuisson. All Right Reserved. 2003. ©