Independent News and Media

The secret joke behind Silence of the Lambs' most famous line

"I ATE his liver with some fava beans and a nice Chianti." It's one of the most quoted lines in film history and appreciated for the malevolent calmness of Sir Anthony Hopkins' delivery.

But Dr Lecter's choice of sides weren't based on his taste predilections, he was making a medical joke.

Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) could have been used to treat him, and what are the three things you're not allowed to eat while taking them? Liver, beans and wine.

As a psychiatrist, Lecter would have known this, so as well as making Clarice uncomfortable he was cracking a joke for his own amusement and hinting that he hasn't been taking his meds.

The factoid was posted on Reddit earlier today and fact-checked by another user, who found that according to online drug library Erowid the foods to avoid while on MAOIs do indeed include 'Chianti wine and vermouth', 'meat: non-fresh or liver' and 'bean curd'.



Boost for job seekers with 36 traineeships on offer

Boost for job seekers with 36 traineeships on offer

Largest funding round since program was reinstated in 2015.

Influential lobby group hosts Gladstone business luncheon

Influential lobby group hosts Gladstone business luncheon

Business Council Australia will be in Gladstone next week.

New gadgets and equipment for Gladstone SES branches

New gadgets and equipment for Gladstone SES branches

Technology evolving for State Emergency Service.

Local Partners