Thursday, January 06, 2011

Script review – “Manhunter” by Michael Mann

I find myself re-reading this script every year or so. The film was a commercial disappointment when it came out and remains in the shadow of Silence of The Lambs, but it’s terrific. Mann said in the early 90s it was the script he was most proud of (of his scripts that had bee made, that is) – and he was right to be. The idea of an investigator who solves serial killer homicides by thinking like a serial killer wasn’t then old; the characters are terrific, as is all the technical data. The tormented Will Graham is a wonderful hero – why didn’t Thomas Harris ever bring the character back? He was more interesting in many ways than Clarice Starling. There is very little violence shown but it hangs over the whole film, especially the fates of the two families. From memory, they changed some of the script for the final film, but I can’t remember off the top of my head what they did.

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