“It rubs the lotion on its skin or else it gets the hose again.”
Did we need a re-make of Silence of the Lambs? Probably. Did it have to be a Lego movie? That, I’m not so sure of. One thing I do know for sure—Anthony Hopkins has really lost his shit. Rumor has it that the idea for a Lego: Silence of the Lambs movie came to him in a dream, and the very next day he got on the phone with director Jonathan Demme to pitch it. When Demme said he wasn’t interested in remaking his 1991 masterpiece, Hopkins decided to direct it himself. Knowing he’s never directed an animated movie before, he decided he would keep things simple by following the original film shot for shot. The problem is, he insisted on working completely from memory, and he hasn’t watched the film since it’s premiere 26 years ago. And his memory isn’t what it used to be. For instance, he didn’t remember that Hannibal Lecter and Clarisse don’t fuck in the back of Buffalo Bill’s pick-up truck while he’s driving around looking for more plump victims. In all fairness, it was probably the most believable sex scene between two Lego people that I’ve ever seen (certainly better than the butt pounding Lego Batman gives Lego Robin in The Lego Batman Movie) but it wasn’t true to the source material.
To his credit, Hopkins did make some bold casting choices. With the directing duties being as they were, he reluctantly had to find a replacement for himself in the lead role. Aziz Ansari filled in perfectly as Hannibal. His British accent leaves a lot to be desired, but otherwise, his delivery is flawless. The same can be said for Mindy Kaling as Charisa (which is the name Hopkins remembers instead of “Clarice” for the Jody Foster part). The performance that really stands out, though, is Hulk Hogan as Buffalo Bill. Not known for his acting outside the squared circle, Hogan buckled down with the same acting coach Batista hired while working on Guardians of the Galaxy and really worked his ass off. He got so into his part that he insisted on stripping down and tucking his dick between his legs for the famous “I’d fuck me” scene, even though he was alone inside a recording booth and would never appear on screen. Apparently, he showed up to the premiere like that as well. Some of the staff at the TCL Chinese Theatre considered asking him to put on pants, but then they remembered Hulk Hogan is really good at winning lawsuits whenever his dick is involved. They should just be thankful Hogan didn’t show up wearing George “The Animal” Steele’s skin.
While Hopkins got many of the details wrong, the plot is fairly close the original. Charisa (Clarice) is still an FBI agent, Hannibal is still a cannibal who likes classical music and hates/eats the warden of his maximum security prison, and Buffalo Bill is still trying to make a woman suit out of real skin. Incidentally, the Lego version of the woman suit is even more disturbing than you’re probably imagining it. Overall, the action is decent, the visuals are spectacular, and the comedy relief is very relieving. The scene with the lotion and the basket is especially hilarious. There are enough things askew from the original to piss off die-hard fans, but there are enough accidentally brilliant moments to satisfy people who don’t really give a shit whether or not a movie is actually good.