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The Silence of the Lambs, starring Anthony Hopkins as Hannibal Lecter and Jodie Foster as Clarice Starling, is one of the most terrifying films ever made. It doesn't accomplish that via blood and jump scares. Instead, the film relies on moody silence and atmosphere. It builds tension to a nearly intolerable level before releasing it.
Hannibal may be behind protective glass for most of the film, but he still scares the bejesus out of us. In other words, he's an excellent encapsulation of what makes this story tick. We're frightened by the potential for violence—what we're told these psychopaths are capable of—rather than what we see them do.
And when real, physical violence does come into play, it's harrowing and brutal, but brief. It affirms everything we've been told while still leaving enough to the imagination.
Here are 20 trivia facts about The Silence of the Lambs, currently streaming on Netflix.