Books and Movies Reviews

Silence of the Lambs. Editing.

Anthony Hopkins's role as Hannibal Lector in "The Silence of the Lambs" is nothing short of grotesque. He gives an absolutely amazing performance playing the role of this deranged, psychiatrist. In fact, he plays the part so well that at times the madmen seems capable of leaping right off the screen and ripping some ones head off of their shoulders. The editing and sound techniques involved in the mise-en-scene gives the audience a taste of the real thing.
The movie tells us the tale of a fully-fledged psychopath, in captive, who assists a budding FBI agent named Clarice Starling in finding a serial killer out on the loose. The serial killer happens to be someone known to the prisoner, Hannibal Lector. The movie is based around Lector and Clarice and the tug of war they play with the FBI's hierarchy in order to find this killer, who likes to murder, and scalp plus size women.
The scene that we will be analyzing is the one where Lector escapes from his cell.
The cell is located within the top floor of a security building. Lector's cell is placed right in the middle of the cavernous hall. However, he still manages to escape after killing the two incompetent guards who were watching him.
The scene starts off with the guards from the left of the screen towards the right. One of them is carrying the doctor's dinner. The movement of the guards from left to right is based upon a sequence shot. A sequence shot is a shot where no editing of the action takes place. This kind of shot is usually used in documentaries. The next time we see the guards, they are by the door of the cell. But we don't see the camera following them from point A to point B. To condense time, a technique called cutting to continuity is used. That is, we the shot of the guards at point A, and then we see the final shot when they reach point B.
Between the two shots, we see another type of editing used in film. It is called…


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