After retiring from the Bureau, FBI agent Will Graham (Norton) is recruited back once more to hunt down "The Tooth Fairy," a madman who kills whole families and then covers their eyes with pieces of broken mirror. Needing help in finding the killer, Will reluctantly goes to visit Dr. Hannibal Lecter (Hopkins - whose portrayal of the character in "The Silence Of The Lambs" earned him an Academy Award® for Best Actor in 1991), the cannibal who almost killed him and sent him into an early retirement. Dr. Lecter feeds Will little bits of information, but of course he knows much more than he's willing to divulge. The killer's name is Francis Dolarhyde (Fiennes), a mild mannered man working at a film processing lab who is wrestling with his own inner demons. Attracted to the blind Reba McClane (Watson), Francis tries to control his murderous urges when he's with her but when he feels betrayed by Reba and he knows the FBI is right behind him, Francis can't help but go after one more family - and Hannibal leads him right to it. "Red Dragon" is based on the book by Thomas Harris. (Tricia Littrell)
Special features include commentary with Director Brett Ratner and Writer Ted Tallly; the music score commentary with Composer Danny Elfman; a textual life history and criminal profile on Lecter that is outlined in a similar way to real serial killers' profiles; deleted and extended scenes with optional commentary by Ratner, Tally, and Editor Mark Helfrich; alternate versions with optional commentary by Ratner, Tally, and Helfrich; an eight-minute John Douglas-hosted featurette Inside The Mind Of A Serial Killer; a four-minute interview with Anthony Hopkins on his role as Hannibal Lecter; the 14-minute Making Of Red Dragon; the 40-minute A Director's Journey: The Making Of Red Dragon, which begins with preproduction and location scouting all over the country, includes behind-the-scenes on-set footage and a visit from the King Of Pop, and ends with the premiere; Brett Ratner's NYU silent student film (four minutes); four minutes worth of before-and-after visual effects shots; screen and film tests with group audio commentary by Ratner, Cinematographer Dante Spinotti, and Makeup Effects Specialist Matthew Mungle; a brief 45-second special makeup application explanation with narration by Ratner and Mungle; a four-minute stunt featurette on the burning wheelchair, a four-minute look at how the Leeds House crime scene was created; and storyboard comparisons.
The VC-1-encoded 2.35:1 HD DVD picture is crisp and detailed, with well-rendered colors, deep blacks, and good contrast. Edge enhancement is not a distraction, but source element artifacts can be seen at times. (Danny Richelieu)
While the mix can be exciting and the recording quality is generally quite good, the Dolby® Digital Plus encoding can have a distracting shuffling noise at low levels and hard-edged vocals. (Danny Richelieu)