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Film / Manhunter

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It's just you and me now, sport.

"Well... here I... am."
The Tooth Fairy

The first Film of the Book of the Thomas Harris novel Red Dragon, this 1986 film, written and directed by Michael Mann for the De Laurentiis Entertainment Group, features Hannibal Lecktor (note the spelling) as played by Brian Cox. Like in The Silence of the Lambs, he is used to help an FBI investigator. His name is Will Graham (William Petersen) and he is trying to find a serial killer known as Francis Dollarhyde (note this spelling too), 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.

Unlike later adaptations of the Hannibal Lecter novels, Manhunter relies heavily on saturated colors and overpowering music. Mann carried over much of the film's style from his earlier work with Miami Vice and To Live and Die in L.A..

The film was later re-made in 2002 as Red Dragon, this time acting as a prequel to the 1991 adaptation of The Silence of the Lambs instead of a self-contained work.

Not to be confused with Sierra's series of adventure games with the same name, or the comic of the same name. It should also not be confused with the similarly titled horror/killer video game produced by Rockstar Games, even though both feature actor Brian Cox.

This movie contains examples of:

  • Adaptation Distillation: A few notable changes:
    • Lecktor's sixth finger is missing—although every film adaptation of the series has excluded this plot point.
    • Dollarhyde's obsession with the red dragon painting and his split personality are mostly ignored and instead just barely hinted at— in fact his past and backstory are glossed over as is much of the character's personality.
    • Instead of the wider-array of targets the literary Lecter chooses, the cinematic Lecktor is said to specifically target college girls, and there is no mention of the fact he is a cannibal (save munching on a nurse's face). In some ways he's more of a minor character here to give history to Will Graham and provide Dollarhyde his information- which is how he was intended to be, but is given much less focus than in the novel.
    • The mental hospital is a new facility, bright white and clean as opposed to the filthy dungeon look of later films, with Lecktor kept in a room divided into his cell and a visitor room. There is no Plexiglas wall or neighboring cells.
    • Kevin is Will's son, not his stepson. In the book, when Will tells Kevin about what he has to do to catch people like Lecter or Dollarhyde, he feels ashamed for having to defend himself to his stepson. In the film, it becomes a bonding moment for father and son.
    • Dollarhyde is killed at his home in a shootout with police, rather than escaping to show up at Graham's house later.
    • In the book, Will is badly disfigured by Dollarhyde, and later is revealed to have become a serious alcoholic. In the film, Will has some facial injuries that are not disfiguring, and while he's going to check into therapy to deal with the trauma of the film's events, he will eventually recover and rejoin his family.
  • Adaptation Title Change: From Red Dragon, mostly so people wouldn't confuse it for a martial arts film.
  • Adaptational Alternate Ending: The ending is much lighter, being changed completely from the book's ending to one where Graham gets to fight and kill Dollarhyde before he ever gets the chance to invade his home and attack his family. As a result, his psychological troubles are now set at ease so that he can go back to retiring in peace.
  • Adaptational Attractiveness: The novel describes Freddy Lounds as a lumpy, ugly guy with buck teeth. Here, he's played the handsome Stephen Lang.
  • Adaptational Badass: In the book, Dollarhyde is exceptionally fit, and it takes multiple bullets from a comically oversized handgun to take him down; nonetheless, Will and Molly effectively stop him, and he earlier flees when the police arrive rather than risk capture. Here, he takes on said cops single-handedly with a shotgun and kills them all, and it takes Graham emptying his revolver into him to finally kill him. Even then, he shrugs off the first few shots.
  • Adaptational Heroism: Chilton is almost a completely different character than he is in the book and later Lecter mythos adaptations, being a quietly competent professional versus a self-aggrandizing Jerkass. The Director's cut adds a brief scene showing more of Chilton's Jerkass side, but he is still far more competent than he is in the book and later films (Chilton tries to pick Graham's brain for some insights into Lecktor's psyche; when Graham coldly shuts him down, Chilton immediately realizes he went too far and backs off).
  • Adaptational Jerkass: Lektor is much more of a jerk than his Affably Evil portrayal in the book. He also lacks the redeeming qualities of his book counterpart.
  • Adaptational Nice Guy: Reba's supervisor at the photo lab is shown to be professional and polite in his two brief scenes, in contrast to his portrayal as a lecherous, leering sleaze in the novel. This was probably done to make his murder by Dollarhyde seem even more pointless and delusion-driven, as opposed to the killing of an Asshole Victim.
  • Adaptational Ugliness: Rather than the serial killer of the book who believes he is ugly (due to a birth defect tied in with his traumatic childhood that has since been reduced to a small surgical scar) who is presently oblivious to how women at his workplace actually consider him attractive, Francis Dollarhyde is played onscreen as distinctly older-looking, bald on top with drawn, sunken features.
  • Advertised Extra: The film was broadcast on TV immediately after the phenomenal success of The Silence of the Lambs but the title was changed to Red Dragon: The Pursuit of Hannibal Lecter. Of course, anyone who saw the movie in 1986 or read the book would realize that Lecter had about eight minutes of screen time and being that the story is set prior to Silence of the Lambs, Lecter is still behind bars for the entire film. The character being pursued was a serial killer called The Tooth Fairy real name is Francis Dollarhyde. Lecter's influence is marginal and is mostly part of the main character's backstory. The name change and subtitle was just an attempt to capitalize on the popularity of the recent 1991 blockbuster by broadcasting a little-remembered film that was based on the previous book in the series.
  • Animal Motif: Much as been made of how reptilian Brian Cox is, with cold black eyes and a black, gaping maw.
  • Art Imitates Art: After Graham fills Dollarhyde full of lead, Dollarhyde falls down on his back. A camera shot from above shows the blood pooling out from Dollarhyde in a symmetrical winged shape that looks just like the Red Dragon from William Blake's painting.
  • As Long as It Sounds Foreign: The Chinese character 中 (zhong) is said to mean "Red Dragon" in the film. It actually means "middle." The confusion comes from the game mahjong, which features a group of three tiles called the "dragon tiles" in English. There are three of them: a red one, a green one, and a white one. The red dragon tile features the Chinese character for "middle." Evidently somebody misunderstood, thinking that the red "dragon tile" was actually the "red dragon" tile, and that 中 means "red dragon." In actuality, "red dragon" in Chinese would be 紅龍 or 紅色龍.
  • Asshole Victim: Deconstructed by Lektor on Freddy Lounds, practically giggling that Will did a good job of Make It Look Like an Accident by setting him up as a target for Dollarhyde. Will lamely refutes this, but it's clear he wonders if he did it subconsciously.
  • The Bait: One that backfires badly as the Tooth Fairy realises he's being Lured into a Trap and goes after Lounds instead.
  • Bait-and-Switch:
    • After feeding the misleading and insulting story about the killer to the Tattler in order to set Will up as a target, the FBI plans to have Will walk a particular route at night while snipers and other agents closely monitor the scene. As Will walks the path, a man in a hoodie appears running in his direction. Right when the man gets close, Will tackles him and the agents rush in. Upon removing the hood, they realize it's just some random jogger who can't be the killer (they know the killer is blond based on crime scene evidence, while the jogger is black). The killer had actually decided to go after Freddy Lounds that same night.
    • Immediately after Jack and Will discover that Lektor's coded message to the Tooth Fairy was the address of the Graham family, the film cuts to Molly being woken by Kevin, who notifies his mom of some strange noises outside. The two quietly make their way to the front door, noticing the silhouette of a man holding a shotgun on the kitchen wall. Upon opening the front door, they come face to face with a police officer with a shotgun politely asking if they're alright while loads of other officers sent in by Jack frantically cover the premises.
  • Bald of Evil: Francis Dollarhyde, the Tooth Fairy, is balding in this movie, mostly because his actor is.
  • 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.
    • Graham deliberately makes himself The Bait by telling Lounds to pen a story in which Will insinuated the killer was a) gay, and b) had sex with his mother. It backfires— Dollarhyde goes after Lounds instead.
  • Blind and the Beast: Dollarhyde starts dating a blind woman halfway through the movie. This is partly because of his implicit insecurities about his cleft palate (much more explicit in the novel and 2002 movie); he thinks he is ugly, and doesn't believe he'd stand a chance with someone who could actually see him. This, in fact, is one of the reasons he kills- dead women don't think he is ugly. Significantly, Dollarhyde stops Reba when she tries to touch his face.
  • Book Ends: An inter-film example: Manhunter opens with a POV sequence of Dollarhyde breaking into the Leeds' home in the dark of night, while The Silence of the Lambs, adapted from the sequel to the book this movie is based on, ends with a POV sequence of Buffalo Bill chasing Clarice Starling throughout his darkened basement.
  • Breaking Speech: Hannibal gives one to Will over the phone, telling him that God Is Evil and that what bothered him about killing Garret Jacob Hobbes (the first Serial Killer Graham caught) was that he secretly enjoyed it.
  • Celestial Deadline: 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.
  • Central Theme: The entire film is about vision and color. For example, notice the background colors of the opening credits, saturated and overexposed. Lektor's prison is completely white, which has a negative psychological effect on Will (who calms down when staring at the green grass.) Of course, Dollarhyde's job is color correction, and he puts shards of mirrors in his female victims' eyes.
    Lecktor: Have you ever seen blood in the moonlight, Will? It appears quite black.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Hannibal is casually chewing bubble gum. He uses the metal wrapper to hot-wire the phone.
  • Color Motif: Cool blue tones were used for the scenes shared between Will Graham and his wife Molly, and unsettling greens and magentas were used for the scenes with Francis Dollarhyde.
  • Color Wash: The film frequently makes use of saturated color— be it through set design or tinting the picture— as a method of conveying a scene's mood. Even the opening credits are affected by this, being set atop a solid blue backdrop.
  • Composite Character: In Red Dragon, the novel, Will has caught two serial killers prior to the Tooth Fairy case—Lecter, and another guy who was killing college students. In Manhunter, the other guy is vaguely referenced but "Lecktor" has been locked up for killing college girls.
  • Consulting a Convicted Killer: Graham seeks help from Hannibal Lecktor in order to gain better insight in finding the Tooth Fairy.
  • Cowboy Cop: Graham devolves into this near the end, as highlighted by his vow, "It's just you and me now, sport."
  • 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.
  • Demoted to Extra: Frustrated with Graham's mental state, his wife decides to spend time away. In the novel, she returns and it is she, not her husband or the cops, who kills Dollarhyde in the climax.
  • Dies Differently in Adaptation: In the book, Molly Graham shoots Dollarhyde in her home. In the film, Will shoots him in Reba's home.
  • Disabled Love Interest: Reba, Dollarhyde's blind coworker, goes home with him and engages in very vigorous woman-on-top sex with him.
  • Dramatic Shattering: Francis Dollarhyde leaves slivers of glass embedded in his victim's eyes. In the climax, he's shown shattering a mirror as he prepares to kill Reba.
  • Driven to Villainy: Francis Dollarhyde:
    Will Graham: 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, he's 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.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: Compared to the 1991 film adaptation of The Silence of the Lambs and its successors, Manhunter takes a far different approach, to the point where one could easily forget it's part of the same greater franchise.
    • It lacks the Gothic overtones of later films, opting instead for a more stylized approach making heavy and idiosyncratic use of saturated color to invoke mood (e.g. "sensual" blue and "subversive" green).
    • The film lacks much of the more explicit violence of later films in favor of exploiting Nothing Is Scarier and the Gory Discretion Shot, which makes the few instances of explicit violence that much heavier-hitting.
    • Probably the most microcosmic aspect of Manhunter is Hannibal "Lecktor": his prison is a cramped cell in a sterile, white mental hospital, far removed from the large, dungeonlike design seen in later films, and Lecktor himself is more smug and willing to put up facades than the serpentine and more outwardly malevolent portrayal by Anthony Hopkins.
  • "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?
  • Evil Is Hammy: Largely averted with Brian Cox's cold and understated portrayal of Lecktor (in contrast to Anthony Hopkins in The Silence of the Lambs). Tom Noonan as Dollarhyde plays it more straight in his debut scene, although all things considered there really isn't any other way to play that moment but hammy.
    Dollarhyde: You owe me awe!
  • Evil Mentor: Lektor clearly considers himself to be this to Graham, repeatedly goading and coaxing him to admit and accept the darker impulses within him and that they're not that different. Graham is justifiably repulsed by this.
  • Expy: Cox based his portrayal of Lektor on Scottish serial killer Peter Manuel.
  • Freudian Excuse Is No Excuse: During his "Eureka!" Moment, Graham acknowledges that Dollarhyde must have been abused and states that he pities the child Dollarhyde used to be. However, in the same monologue, Graham states that he feels absolutely no sympathy for Dollarhyde as an adult and states that Dollarhyde is a selfish, utterly-disgusting human being who deserves to die violently.
    Crawford: You feel sorry for him.
    Graham: This started from an abused kid, a battered infant... My heart bleeds for him, as a child. Someone took a kid and manufactured a monster. At the same time, as an adult, he's irredeemable. He butchers whole families to pursue trivial fantasies. As an adult, someone should blow the sick fuck out of his socks.
  • A God Am I: Lektor's justification of why he and any Serial Killer commits murder- it makes you feel like you are God. He tells Will to look forward to that feeling.
  • God Is Evil: Lektor insists this is the case, along with A God Am I.
    Lektor: Did you really feel depressed after you shot Mr. Garrett Jacob Hobbes to death? I think you probably did. But it wasn't the act that got to you. Didn't you feel so bad, because killing him felt so good? And why shouldn't it feel good? It must feel good to God. He does it all the time. God's terrific! He dropped a church roof on 34 of his worshipers in Texas last Wednesday night, just as they were groveling through a hymn to his majesty. Don't you think that felt good?
    Will: Why does it feel good, Dr. Lektor?
    Lektor: It feels good, Will, because God has power, and if one does what God does enough times, one will become as God is. God's a champ. He always stays ahead. He got 140 Filipinos in one plane crash last year. Remember that earthquake in Italy last spring?
  • Gory Discretion Shot: The moment where Dollarhyde bites Lounds' lips off isn't actually shown, instead cutting to the outside of Dollarhyde's house just before his mouth reaches Lounds' and leaving the latter's muffled screams of pain as the only indicator of what's happening. Additionally, the slides that Dollarhyde shows Lounds, depicting his victims postmortem, are left obscured from the viewer, leaving Lounds' pained reactions being the only indicators of how horrific they actually are. Compare this to the 2002 film and the Hannibal TV series, which show both in vivid detail.
  • Guns Do Not Work That Way: When Graham shoots Dollarhyde, each round is shown to penetrate Dollarhyde's body, spattering blood on the wall behind him, despite the Glaser specifically being designed to avoid overpenetration.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: Will Graham is a criminal profiler who lives in fear that his understanding of the mind of a killer will turn him into a sociopath.
  • Hope Spot: In the scenes where Dollarhyde spends the night with Reba, his strong emotional connection to her (the first in his life) suggests that he may have found someone and something that may fill the void in his life and lead him to stop killing. Unfortunately, after having committed so many murders already, he's too far gone to turn his mind and life around.
  • Immediate Self-Contradiction: Lektor scoffs that appealing to his intellectual vanity won't work, but once Will tells him Dr. Bloom is working on the case and "he's the best", Lektor immediately acquiesces to Will's demands.
  • Jerkass: Brian Cox's take on Lecktor, in contrast to Hopkins's later, Affably Evil performance.
  • Jump Scare: A few, but the most startling one is after Graham has ran out of the mental institution, interrupted by Lounds photographing him.
    Lounds: Gotcha.
  • Left the Background Music On: Dollarhyde puts Iron Butterfly's "In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida" for his final kill, and it plays in its near-entirety throughout his playing with his victim, his One-Man Army shotgun rampage against the policemen that arrive to try to stop him, and Graham's Big Damn Heroes Dynamic Entry and subsequent killing of Dollarhyde.
  • Lighter and Softer: The ending is changed completely from the book's ending to one where Graham gets to fight and kill Dollarhyde before he ever gets the chance to invade his home and attack his family and completely destroy his face (he gets a large gash across it in the film, but it's nowhere near disfiguring). As a result, his psychological troubles are now set at ease so that he can go back to retiring in peace, his wife and stepson don't leave him, and he doesn't become an alcoholic.
  • Locked into Strangeness: Graham's hair has some gray tinges, due to his experience with Lektor.
  • Mad Doctor: Lektor is a world-famous psychiatrist who happens to be a convicted Serial Killer. He might be stuck in an insane asylum, but that doesn't stop him from writing for psychiatric journals.
  • Manipulative Bastard: Lektor, sure, but Crawford uses a Batman Gambit to get Will to take on the case, and freely admits it when Will confronts him with it. Lektor congratulates Will for setting Lounds up to be killed, and even though it wasn't Will's conscious intent, he wonders if he really plot Lounds' death subconsciously. invoked
  • Man on Fire: Freddy Lounds is set on fire and sent rolling down the street tied to a wheelchair.
  • Mistaken for Cheating: Dollarhyde's fragile connection with sanity snaps when he misinterprets an innocent moment between Reba and her coworker as something intimate.
  • Modesty Bedsheet: Graham's wife keeps the bedsheet wrapped around herself as she walks over to Graham, staring out the hotel room's window.
  • Murderer P.O.V.: Used at the beginning when the Tooth Fairy enters the Leeds' house. Portions of the sequence are used again when Graham examines the crime scene for the first time; a visual representation of his ability to enter the minds of killers.
  • No Periods, Period: Averted somewhat; although, if women in this world didn't menstruate, and we found a box of Maxi-Pads from a world where they did, we'd probably be inclined to assume they're some kind of stick-on blindfold, too.
  • Nothing Is Scarier: Used quite heavily here: most of the violence occurs entirely off-screen, with probably the bloodiest scene in the movie being the shootout at Dollarhyde's house. As a result, the quick cuts to the graphic crime scene photos and Lounds' flaming body have a much greater impact than if the film were more lenient with its violence. The film establishes itself with a Murderer P.O.V. stalking the family in their own house as he ascends to their bedroom, cutting to the credits just as the wife wakes up.
  • "Not So Different" Remark: Lektor tells this to Graham. What's scary is that he seems to be right.
    Lecktor: You want the scent? Smell yourself.
  • Not So Stoic: Lektor is even-keeled and unfazed during his interview with Will, but after Will matter-of-factly tells him he caught Lektor because he was insane, Lektor gives him a Death Glare then starts asking loudly, "Do you know how you caught me? ''DO YOU KNOW HOW YOU CAUGHT ME?" Will flees, and Lektor snarls, "You want the scent? Smell yourself."
  • One-Man Army: When the cops finally close in on Dollarhyde, he rather casually grabs Graham as he jumps at him, slashes him across the face, tosses him into a corner, and then grabs a shotgun. Using the latter, he then goes to town on the cops trying to stop him, killing several and ignoring at least one point-blank gunshot wound. He returns to kill Graham, only to go down after absorbing half-a-dozen .44 Special Glaser rounds.
  • One Phone Call: Hannibal Lektor is given a phone to call his lawyer; he instead rewires the phone (it has no dial) so he can make another call to find out where Will lives.
  • Only in Miami: Manhunter was displaced to a mostly South Florida setting, and the film itself is very stylized around Eighties South Florida. No surprise, since Michael Mann wrote and directed it.
  • Paparazzi:
    • Freddy Lounds, who's so sleazy he even broke into Graham's hospital room to take pictures of his injuries after his encounter with Lektor. Makes it hard to believe he didn't deserve the fate the Tooth Fairy gave him.
    • Lektor in fact applauds Will for setting Freddy up like that. Will ponders if he set Freddy up, if subconsciously, as Lektor implies.
  • Pragmatic Adaptation: A great deal of expository content from the novel is absent from the film, thus cutting out a good amount of background information crucial to understanding the book's characters. Most notably, Francis Dollarhyde's backstory and split personality are only briefly alluded to in the film, thus making him a far more enigmatic character compared to the almost voyeuristic level of detail he's given in the book. Given that the final movie is already two hours long, it's likely much of this exposition was cut out for the sake of saving time, and the film works around these gaps by playing them into its heavy focus on implication.
  • Prematurely Grey-Haired: Will Graham has gray tinges in his hair due to his past experience with Hannibal Lecktor.
  • Product Placement: Subtly. Hannibal notes that Will's aftershave is something a child would choose because it has a ship on the bottle — which would be Old Spice. A more blatant example occurs in the scene where Graham comes clean to his son, during which several cereal brands are plainly visible, but because it takes place in a supermarket, this is probably inevitable.
  • The Profiler: Will Graham is the archetypal fictional profiler, the basis for a great deal such detectives who showed up in the media after this film came out, and the book based on it.
  • Re-Cut: The Director's Cut features the following additional scenes:
    • After visiting the Leeds house in the beginning of the film, Will takes a pause in watching their home movies and calls his wife and talks to her for a while.
    • A scene with Graham and Dr. Chilton just before Graham goes to see Lecter.
    • Additional dialog during Graham's meeting with Lecter concerning how Graham caught Lecter.
    • A scene with Graham telling Crawford that he is bringing his wife and son to town.
    • An alternate ending, in which Graham visits the family that would be next in line for Dollarhyde, but who are now safe, thanks to Graham.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Dollarhyde gives one to Lounds, reflecting on Hannibal's assessment he has a god complex:
    Before me you are a slug in the sun. You are privy to a great becoming and you recognize nothing. You are an ant in the afterbirth. It is your nature to do only one thing correctly: tremble. Bur fear is not what you owe me. Lounds: you and the others, YOU OWE ME AWE!
  • Recycled Soundtrack: The music that plays when Graham visits Lecktor in his cell ("Freeze" by Klaus Schulze) originally appeared in the 1983 Austrian film Angst.
  • Rule of Symbolism: The final shot of a dead Dollarhyde shows him in the same pose as The Great Red Dragon and the Woman Clothed in Sun. In essence, he could only become the Red Dragon through his own death.
  • Sanity Has Advantages: How Will caught Hannibal, who he admits is smarter than him.
  • Sanity Slippage: In the Back Story, Will suffered one after catching Lecktor, because of his To Know Him, I Must Become Him detective style, and was committed to an insane asylum.
  • Serial Killer: Francis Dollarhyde, aka "The Tooth Fairy" or "The Red Dragon". Also, Dr. Lecktor.
  • Sexy Discretion Shot: Reba giving Francis a blowjob is now just more implied than explicit.
  • Shirtless Scene: Will Graham gets a few. Comes with living on a Florida beach.
  • Shout-Out: When Freddy Lounds first sees Graham, he says to him, "Whaddya hear, whaddya say?"
  • Show, Don't Tell: Almost everything regarding Dollarhyde's personality and behavior is conveyed through acting and actions. During the Lounds sequence, unlike Red Dragon, the film shows Lounds' reactions to the grisly sliders of the murdered family, and never shows the slides themselves.
  • Slasher Smile: Before biting off Freddie's lips, Francis snorts poppers, then turns toward Freddie with a profoundly creepy smile on his face.
  • Soft Glass: Graham goes straight through a window at full gallop. He does get a couple of superficial cuts on his face.
  • Spell My Name With An S: Unlike other adaptations of the book series, Manhunter spells Hannibal's last name as "Lektor" instead of "Lecter." Similarly, Francis Dolarhyde's name is spelled with two L's in the film instead of just one.
  • Spotlight-Stealing Squad: Fans of Manhunter generally see Brian Cox as this for his true-to-the-book, brief on-screen role as Hannibal Lecter.
  • Super Window Jump: Will Graham does this to rescue Reba in a scene very well-timed to a diegetic "In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida".
  • Sympathy for the Devil: Deconstructed in the uncut version.
    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, he's 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.
  • Technically a Smile: Before attacking Lounds, Dollarhyde snorts poppers (amyl nitrate), and wears a dissonant happy smile before going in for what seems like a Kiss of Death (when he's about to bite off Lounds' lips as the film cuts away.)
  • That Man Is Dead: Francis, thinking she was unfaithful to him, tells Reba "Francis is gone forever", before attempting to murder her. It's also his last line in the film.
  • To Know Him, I Must Become Him: Graham's method for profiling serial killers. Sometimes it works too well.
  • You're Insane!: Not in the usual use of the trope, though.
    Will: I know that I'm not smarter than you.
    Lecktor: Then how did you catch me?
    Will: You had disadvantages.
    Lecktor: What disadvantages?
    Will: (matter-of-factly) You're insane.
    Lecktor: ...