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File:Manhunter-williaml.petersen.jpg
"Well... here I... am."
The Tooth Fairy

The first Film of the Book of the Thomas Harris novel Red Dragon, this 1987 film features Hannibal Lektor (note the spelling) as played by Brian Cox. Like in Silence of the Lambs, he is used to help an FBI investigator. His name is Will Graham and he is trying to find a serial killer known as Francis Dollarhyde, nicknamed "The Tooth Fairy". As he tries to find the serial killer, Graham's personal demons start to haunt him, affecting his work and his relationships.

A box office flop on release, despite critical approval. It has become a Cult Classic for many Hannibal fans. The lead investigator is played by William Petersen, feeling at times like an extended audition for his CSI role.

The film relied on heavily-tinted scenes and overpowering music. The use of "In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida" is very strange to anyone who has ever seen its use in The Simpsons (it times at 17 minutes and 1 second on the album) and looks very much like a movie from The Eighties.

Later re-made as Red Dragon, this time featuring Anthony Hopkins as Lecter.

Not to be confused with Sierra's series of adventure games with the same name, or the comic of the same name.


This movie contains examples of:

  • Adaptational Heroism: Chilton is much more professional and competent then he was in the books.
  • Adaptational Villainy: Dollarhyde lacks the Freudian Excuse and much of the sympathetic traits his novel counterpart had.
  • Asshole Victim: Subverted by Freddy Lounds, who’s death is horiffying and completely undeserved, even if he was a complete Jerkass.
  • Anti-Hero: Will is one step away from becoming a killer himself.
  • Bald of Evil: Francis Dollarhyde.
  • Berserk Button: Graham doesn't like it when people bring up his past experience with Lecktor, especially when the one bringing it up is the same tabloid reporter who took advantage of said experience to sell newspapers.
  • Blind and the Beast
  • Consulting a Convicted Killer: Graham seeks help from Hannibal Lektor in order to gain better insight in finding the Tooth Fairy.
  • Cursed with Awesome: Graham's ability to get inside the heads of the killers he tracks makes him good at his job, but puts serious stress on his own sanity at the same time.
  • The Danza: William Petersen as William "Will" Graham.
  • Eureka Moment: When Graham finally figures out how the Tooth Fairy chooses his victims.

  Graham: And you know you need a bolt-cutter and every other Goddamn thing. Because everything with you is seeing, isn't it? Your primary sensory intake that makes your dream live is seeing. Reflections. Mirrors. Images. .... You've seen these films! Haven't you, my man?

 Lecktor: You want the scent? Smell yourself.

 Jack: You feel sorry for him.

Will: As a child, my heart bleeds for him. Someone took a little boy and turned him into a monster. But as an adult... as an adult, hes irredeemable. He butchers whole families to fulfill some sick fantasy. As an adult, I think someone should blow the sick fuck out of his socks.

  • Three Scene Wonder: Lecktor appears in only three scenes, but he casts a pall over the entire film. Cox's take on him is a slimy, reptilian version, with cold, black eyes and a seemingly toothless mouth.
  • To Know Him I Must Become Him: Graham's method for profiling serial killers, only sometimes it works too well.
  • Unintentional Period Piece: The soundtrack and fashions in the film permanently mark it as a product of the 1980s.
  • What Could Have Been: According to Brian Cox, Brian Dennehy was "sort of in the loop" to play Lektor. Dennehy, for whatever reason, recommended that they check out Cox, who was performing in a play at the time.
  • You Have 48 Hours: Since the Tooth Fairy operates on a lunar cycle, the FBI has until the next full moon to catch him before he kills again. They start out with two weeks, but end up taking it right down to the last minute before the killer claims another victim.
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