Manhunter ★★★★★


The greatest movie ever. A movie about watching movies, our relationship to the images, how they have the power to make us feel. It’s how Graham learns to empathize with the Tooth Fairy, and how Dollarhyde sees and so desperately wants to feel. How Petersen and Noonan occupy and navigate their respective spaces, it’s an impressionists’ look into two damaged psyches, where Cox’s Leckter is framed the tightest and more clearly in control of his space, where his evil can easily escape those bars and take hold. Eventually when hunter and hunted collide, it is fitting that Graham literally plunges into and crashes through Dolarhyde’s space. Mann and Spinotti’s camerawork here mirrors hero and villain with a clinical precision that, to my eye, matches the aesthetic perfection of Ridley’s Alien & Blade Runner. Every frame a goddamn painting. The way the camera glides, or captures the horizon, that dreamy blue that only exists in Michael Mann movies. From the moment Graham stared out into the rain, hearing Mrs. Leeds’ voice on the answering machine, and he says, “I’m sorry too.”, I had tears in my eyes till the credits ended. Cinema doesn’t get any better than the Strong As I Am sequence. Sitting front row, watching Manhunter on 35mm (QT’s personal print), I just let the sound and imagery spin me into a trance. I couldn’t keep my eyes off the screen.

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