Red Dragon

The Red Dragon is the national flag of Wales. Red Dragon is also a tile in Mahjong.

Hannibal Lecter trilogy

Template:Infobox Movie Red Dragon is a novel written by Thomas Harris and featuring the brilliant psychiatrist and serial killer Hannibal Lecter. It was originally published in 1981, but found a new audience in the early 1990s after the success of its sequel, The Silence of the Lambs. The title refers to a painting by William Blake, The Great Red Dragon and the Woman Clothed with the Sun.

Red Dragon is, in both publishing chronology and story order, the first book in the Lecter trilogy. It takes place well before the events in The Silence of the Lambs, and relatively soon after Lecter's original capture and imprisonment. That being said, Lecter plays a small role, appearing in only one scene. Rather, it focuses more on the characters of Will Graham and the tortured serial killer, Francis Dolarhyde.

The story has been filmed twice. The first film, released in 1986 under the title Manhunter, was directed by Michael Mann and focused on FBI Special Agent Will Graham, played by William Petersen. Lecter was played by Brian Cox. The second film, which used the original title, appeared in 2002. Directed by Brett Ratner and written by Ted Tally (who also wrote the screenplay for Silence of the Lambs), it starred Edward Norton as Graham and Anthony Hopkins as Lecter—a role he had, by then, played twice before in The Silence of the Lambs and Hannibal.

To understand the origin of evil, you must go back to the beginning.


Graham, who tracked down and captured Lecter, nearly getting killed in the process, is called out of retirement to help track down a serial killer known as "The Tooth Fairy" who has ritualistically murdered two families. He turns to Lecter for help, but discovers that Lecter is manipulating not only him but also the man he is hunting. The relationship between Lecter and Graham parallels the relationship between Lecter and Clarice Starling in the later books, but has very different overtones. Lecter treats Starling as an unworthy student but Graham as a fellow professional (though not an equal).

The main complication in the investigation is Freddie Lounds, a tabloid reporter who once ran afoul of Graham during the Lecter case and now is dogging him to get the story on the Tooth Fairy. Dolarhyde, an avid reader of Lounds' paper, The National Tattler, is displeased with what Lounds writes about him and brutally murders him as a message to the police.

Dolarhyde, who was made into a psychopath by years of abuse from his insane grandmother, falls in love with a blind coworker, Reba McLane. His newfound love conflicts with his homicidal urges, which manifest themselves in his mind as a separate personality he calls "The Great Red Dragon," after the Blake painting. He breaks into a museum and consumes a print of the painting, thinking that if he destroys the Dragon, he can stop killing and live happily ever after with McLane.

After Lecter sends Dolarhyde Graham's address in code, endangering his wife and son, Graham becomes obsessed with the case, eventually figuring out that the killer knew how to get into the families' houses from home movies, which he only could have seen if he worked as a film processor, which indeed Dolarhyde does. Sensing he is about to be caught, Dolarhyde goes to see McLane one last time, but finds her talking to another man and becomes enraged. He kills the other man, breaks into her house and sets it on fire to kill her and himself, but finds at the last minute that he can't, and (apparently) turns the gun on himself. McLane is rescued. Graham is given Dolarhyde's book of writings, which detailed the abuse he went through as well as the killer's infatuation with Lecter.

When Graham returns home, however, Dolarhyde, who had shot the already dead body of the man McLane was talking to as a way to fake his death and escaped, attacks Graham's family and stabbing him in the face. In a twist, Graham uses the same terms that Dolarhyde's grandmother had used against him (ex. "dirty little pig", threatening to "cut it off" after noticing his son had wet himself) against his own son, who was at the very hands of the killer at the time. This enraged Dolarhyde, allowing Graham's son to escape to safety. Dolarhyde gains the upper hand and is about to kill Graham when Graham's wife, Molly, shoots him to death. After recovering, Graham receives a mocking letter from Lecter.

Mann's Manhunter was a very loose adaptation, leaving out Dolarhyde's backstory and having him die at Graham's hands during the fire. Ratner's Red Dragon was overall more faithful to the novel, although it expanded Lecter's role to capitalize on the popularity of Hopkins' interpretation.

External links

fr:Dragon rouge is:Red Dragon ja:レッド・ドラゴン


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