Lee Curtis’s review published on Letterboxd:
Michael Mann’s intense thriller is a highly stylised, but deglamorised imagining of Thomas Harris Red Dragon. Unlike Bret Ratner’s star-studded, but tame 2002 release, Manhunter is a thematic marvel, brimming with visual flair, vibrant colours and an evocative soundtrack.
William Petersen gives a moody, but inconsistent performance as the central character Will Graham and the lack of a strong lead is felt throughout, particularly when you consider his powerful counterpart. While Brian Cox excels as Dr Lecter, perfectly maintaining subtlety, intelligence and curious ambiguity that underpins the mystery so well, he definitely lacks the dramatic screen presence and memorable terror of Hopkins’ superior, glamorised depiction.
Unfortunately, weak performances, an over reliance on style and the resulting lack of narrative substance will ultimately leave the audience cold.