*** Official "RED DRAGON" Discussion Thread

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Ushabye, Oct 2, 2002.

  1. Ushabye

    Ushabye Projectionist

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    Received a print of RED DRAGON tonight in the cinema where I'm a projectionist (and of course have to check the films I splice together so go to watch it as well)! In two words: very good. Puts to bed all that grand standing in HANNIBAL and brings back all those memories of SILENCE. You're reminded of why Antony Hopkins won an Oscar for this role.

    There are a few particular scenes where a better director would have brought it up another notch but everybody makes the most of their roles, especially Emily Watson and Ralph Finnes, and does sterling work to produce a solid entertaining thriller that really brings Hannibal Lecter full circle.

    And what an ending...

    One more thing: see it with a big audience.
     
  2. Andrew Felman

    Andrew Felman Auditioning

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    I just got back from a sneak of this film at my school. I thought it was pretty good and much better than Hannibal. As always, I enjoyed seeing Phillip Seymour Hoffman, even if his role wasn't very big. The rest of the cast was excellent as well, although Edward Norton's perfomance didn't stand out from the rest as I hoped it would have. However, after the sneek they showed Silence of the Lambs, and I was reminded of just how great a film it is. Compared to it, Red Dragon felt too slick and Hollywoodish like Hannibal did. Although it is much better than Hannibal, Red Dragon doesn't come close to Silence of the Lambs.
     
  3. Todd Terwilliger

    Todd Terwilliger Screenwriter

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    How does it compare to Manhunter?
     
  4. Andrew Felman

    Andrew Felman Auditioning

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    I've never seen Manhunter so I can't compare, sorry.
     
  5. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    This thread is now designated the Official Discussion Thread for "Red Dragon". Please, post all comments, links to outside reviews, film and box office discussion items to this thread.
    All HTF member film reviews of "Red Dragon" should be posted to the Official Review Thread.
    Thank you for your consideration in this matter.
    Crawdaddy
     
  6. Chuck L

    Chuck L Screenwriter

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    I enjoyed the film very much and will not go into huge details, but I think that it suffers from having the same screenwriter as Silence.

    There were too many things, that for me, seemed slightly rehashed and I would have loved to have seen Hannibal a little more evil. To me, after the beauty and brillance of this first, this one seemed in the shadow. While Hannibal (being the second, really third film in a way) seems to be the stepchild that is kept in the corner, and for good reason.
     
  7. JonZ

    JonZ Lead Actor

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    The reviews have been VERY positive, but the critic I always check(I gave up on Ebert a long time ago) is James Berardinelli who gave it a horrible review.
    http://movie-reviews.colossus.net/movies.html
    Out of the 20 or so Ive read, only 2 have been negative.
    Im gonna check it out right after work tomorrow.
     
  8. TerryRL

    TerryRL Producer

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    Go figure, Roger Ebert gave the movie 3.5 stars (out of 4). I also checked the Rotten Tomatoes site and "Red Dragon" is at 69% in the fresh column. Out of 62 reviews, 43 were "Fresh" and 19 were "Rotten". It posted an even higher 77% fresh rating in the "Cream of the Crop" review section (i.e. the Chicago Tribune, CNN, Entertainment Weekly, the Hollywood Reporter, L.A. Times, the New York Post, Roger Ebert, Rolling Stone and Variety).

    "Red Dragon" has easily become director Brett Ratner's best reviewed film to date and it might garner him a tad more respect as a "serious filmmaker". We'll see.
     
  9. Jim_F

    Jim_F Screenwriter

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    I haven't read the book, but I'm not quite satisfied with the relationship between Lecter and Graham. When their "game" extends to a horrific personal betrayal, Will just seems too accepting, considering what's at stake.
     
  10. Scott Dautel

    Scott Dautel Second Unit

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    I've not yet seen the film (opening today), but I have seen quite a few clips ... including most of the ones on Yahoo Movies today. I read the book years ago and have probably seen Manhunter 5+ times.
    I'm amazed at a couple of things ... Is the world trying to hide the fact that this is a remake of Manhunter ... which was a "B" film back in the 80's (before Michael Mann became a "genius" [​IMG] ). It's one of my favorites (mostly because of William Peterson), but I would guess that many people under 30 have never heard of it? Based on the clips/trailers ... alot of the dialog in Dragon is verbatum from Manhunter. Is this true for the whole movie? or just a few scenes?
    Is the studio afraid that if the dreaded "remake" word gets out, people will just rent Manhunter and skip Red Dragon. Not likely IMHO.
    BTW ... Michael Mann must have been obsessed with the book. He not only made Manhunter, but if memory serves, shortly thereafter produced a Miami Vice ep. built around the identical storyline.
    side comment: Michael Mann sure has a habit of tinkering with scripts ... Heat (1995) was a remake of L.A. Takedown (Michael Mann, 1989-TV), which was a remake of Thief (1981, Directed by ... Will Graham (just to bring this full-circle)). Thief, starring James Caan & Willie Nelson is also one of my all time faves.
     
  11. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    By the way, I thought William Petersen was much better in the Will Graham role than Edward Norton.





    Crawdaddy
     
  12. Matt Stone

    Matt Stone Lead Actor

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    I agree with you 100%, Robert. While I liked the movie, I thought that Petersen just played that "totured" role much, much better.
     
  13. steve jaros

    steve jaros Second Unit

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    This film is better than Hannibal, not as good as Silence, and *not* as good as Manhunter.

    They brought out top-shelf acting talent, but the Manhunter cast was better all the way around - from Petersen in the Graham role to that creepy big guy (Tom Noonan) who played the Dragon dude. Joan Allen and Dennis Farina were also better than their "red dragon" counterparts.

    Ok, so Hopkins is the better Lechter, but that's the only matchup i'd decide in favor of "Red Dragon"...
     
  14. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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  15. Matt Stone

    Matt Stone Lead Actor

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    Amen to that...I'm sure there were a few sly people saying the same thing about SOTL in regards to it's rehashing of Manhunter way back when.
     
  16. Mike Graham

    Mike Graham Supporting Actor

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    At first glance, Silence of the Lambs appears to be a feminist rehash of Red Dragon but in truth the two novels handle things differently with some themes the same and others differing. Speaking of the books, I immensely enjoy them both.
    However, concerning the movies, I don't like Manhunter at all. True enough, it has a strong fan base, but I never enjoyed William Petersen, the 80s score was absolutely terrible, and I was glad to hear it was being remade.
    Concerning the 2002 adaptation of Red Dragon, I thought the film's grade ended up somewhere around a "B." True, this wasn't Norton in top form, especially when he grabs the tabloid reporter by the collar, the intensity just wasn't there. However, in many other scenes he was very effective in conveying the emotions of the character. Speaking of the cast, I thought it was absolutely fantastic. Keitel was subdued, while Fiennes and Parker did their roles justice with just the right amount of hysteria. Sadly, Lecter seemed to be played for too much humor again this time, considering many of his lines drew a few laughs throughout his screen time.
    The scene where Lecter is being served fine cuisine near the end of the film seemed to be a bit over the top and more appropriate in Hannibal, while the last minute or two of the movie where they try and mention Clarice Starling was just plain dumb. In fact, it played like some deleted scene we would ironically enough look forward to on the eventual DVD.

    Speaking of Thomas Harris novels, Black Sunday would probably read much differently then it ever did before last year.
     
  17. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    Yes Mike, i don't think SoTL was Red Dragon II. The relationship between Hannibal and Will is very different from him and Clarice, and the killers are different as well as the scenarios. But the general storylines are close and I think that's what Chuck is criticizing. I just wanted to point out that similarities are more due to the novel sources than Ted Tally's involvement...
     
  18. Todd Terwilliger

    Todd Terwilliger Screenwriter

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    I agree with the sentiment concerning William Peterson.
    I don't know what amount they changed from Manhunter to Red Dragon but not enough to throw off anything major in the plot. Having seen Manhunter I must admit that some of the suspense of this film was lost on me.
     
  19. Chuck Kent

    Chuck Kent Supporting Actor

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    I enjoyed Red Dragon MUCH more than Manhunter.

    As someone else alludes above, Manhunter is very 80's (music, set colors & lighting.) Red Dragon strikes me as much more timeless. Like others have noted, SOTL is still the best by far (for so many reasons.) I would rank RD second and Hannibal 3rd. And while I do own Manhunter (and have watched it a couple of times), I doubt that I'll watch it much once Red Dragon is in my library.

    FWIW, it's always funny how each of us interprets things so differently. I have always felt that Petersen "over acts" (I still feel that way the few times I've watched him on CSI.)
     
  20. JonZ

    JonZ Lead Actor

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    The end when they mention Clarice doesnt make sense. When shes mentioned Hannibal is writing a letter to Graham after his recovery - Red Dragon takes place I think 2 years after Hannibal is caught, but in Silence of the Lambs doesnt Hannibal say he's been in prison for 8 years

    I thought Raplh Fiennes and Emily Watson were great, but the movie to me was just ok.
     

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