Continuity mistake: When Clarice is opening the letter written to her by Hannibal, it is sealed with wax, and not glued down in any way. While she's reading it, Hannibal is shown licking an envelope. (00:32:05)
Factual error: At the end of the film, Ray Liotta wouldn't be able to raise his eyebrows as the frontalis muscle had been divided. (01:57:10)
Other mistake: When Clarice is reading the letter from Hannibal, we hear a voice over, however what he says differs from what the letter says, specifically the "your good friend" before the signature, which Hannibal says, but which isn't in the letter. (00:35:35)
Visible crew/equipment: Near the beginning of the film while Clarice is being interviewed, we can see a black T-shape during a shot of the floor. This is shown to be an actor's mark, as someone steps right into it a few shots later. (00:12:58)
Revealing mistake: During the scene in which Krendler shows the fake Lecter postcard, look closely and you can read the line: "Sounds like him to me" although this line is part of Krendler's speech, and not part of the message itself. Forgetting your lines, Mr. Liotta? (01:21:55)
Continuity mistake: In the scene when Rinaldo Pazzi (the Italian investigator later disembowelled by Hannibal) is searching on the internet, he types in a search "Hannibal Lecter reward", which returns one match. The match contains the URL and a preview of the page, which gives the first sentence. That sentence however, incorrectly identifies the year of Hannibal's escape as being 1992; however when Rinaldo clicks on the link, the actual page lists the correct date as being 1990 in exactly the same sentence. [An extra comment - if you look closely, as soon as he clicks on the link the page opens, and we see a close-up of Lecter's face - just visible at the top right you can see the date 1992 mentioned. Then it cuts out to a wider shot of the whole page, and the date's magically changed to 1990]. (00:41:17)
Continuity mistake: When Inspector Pazzi is in the phone booth calling the FBI at 1-212-555-0118, he doesn't dial the correct number. (00:47:53)
Revealing mistake: When the rich guy is drinking Chateau d'Yquem from a straw, you can see, afterwards, Gary Oldman's lips under the thick mask or whatever. This is really obvious. (01:23:35)
Continuity mistake: Dr. Lecter signs M.D. with small letters, but when Clarice is reading it, the letters are much bigger. Also, he originally only does a line across the top of "Lecter", but when she gets the letter it's across his whole name. There's also a hyphen between Hannibal Lecter and M.D. in the received version, but not when he sends it. Note: This is nothing to do with the re-mailing service - all they did was send the letter to a different location, not re-write it. (00:34:12)
Continuity mistake: When Hannibal attacks Francesco after the lecture, their shadows, as well as the entire body of the hanged man in the projected picture, are seen overlapping each other in a close up of the projection screen. This is not possible, as the picture is projected from a slide projector behind them. In preceding and following long shots their shadows are correctly blocking the lower half of the body of the hanged man in the projection. (01:11:45)
Continuity mistake: In the flashback seen where Dr. Lecter suggests to Mason Verger peel off his own face, Dr.Lecter picks up the broken mirror piece with a navy or black cloth. Then in the next scene, when he hands it to Mason, there is no cloth. Then, when Mason starts to scrape away at his face, the cloth reappears in Mason's hand.
Continuity mistake: The first time we hear Dr. Chilton's tapes of Lecter's conversations with Starling, Hannibal's exact words are, Agent Starling is a deep roller, Barney. And yet, later in the movie we hear Clarice listen to the same conversation once more only this time he leaves out the name Barney after his question. This is infact an entirely different soundbyte, but it is supposed to be the same tape. (01:31:11)
Continuity mistake: When the Italian Police Inspector is on the phone in the middle of the street with Verger's answering machine, you can see in three consecutive shots the same extra crossing the plaza (a young brunette with a black spaghetti string top). (00:48:35)
Continuity mistake: When Evelda Drumgo's henchmen discover the presence of the police there is a coffee cup and a light blue holdall on the bonnet of their car. The car then reverses at high speed and the cup falls off but the bag shows no signs of budging. Then, a split-second later, the scene cuts to the car reversing into a parked white van. The blue bag has mysteriously disappeared. But, a few cuts later (just after the one where an agent is showered with sparks) you see the car speeding towards the camera and both the coffee cup and the bag have reappeared (although you have to be quick to spot it). (00:08:46)
Continuity mistake: When Clarice got the tapes from Barney, he told her that the doctor had started taping her AFTER her first session with Hannibal. Some of the conversations that she listens to took place on her very first visit to see him so there shouldn't be any tapes at all of those. (00:27:15)
Audio problem: A mistake with one of the audio tapes: They mixed the dialogue of two scenes in Silence of the Lambs, you can hear Lecter saying "you have not more vacations to bargain" which happens in the cell from which he escapes, and following that sentence asks "what it will be? quid pro quo, poor Catherine is waiting" and other lines that are from the scene when Lecter is still at the glass cell, the first time Clarice gives him the fake offer from the Senator. (00:37:06)
Factual error: In the scene where the top of Paul's skull and scalp are removed, the scalp looks normal. In order to remove the skull and scalp in such a manner, the blood supply to the scalp would've been completely severed. Without a blood supply, the scalp would've quickly discolored, and certainly wouldn't look nice and normal.
Continuity mistake: In the scene where Pazzi goes to pick up Dr. Fell's belongings from Hannibal Lector at the Palazzo Capponi, when the camera is first on Lector he is wearing tracksuit bottoms, and then the camera switches to Pazzi and back to Lector, and he is wearing different trousers - pyjama type. (00:51:19)
Continuity mistake: Right before Paul says grace, Dr. Lecter checks the time on the grandfather clock. We see a long shot, and the hand's on about 46 minutes. Then there is a closeup of the clock moving past 50 minutes after the hour. When it cuts back to the table, the clock is immediately back to 46. (01:56:19)
Continuity mistake: When Pazzi sits down during Hannibal's presentation, Hannibal puts his hand on his shoulder. It is suddenly in a slightly different place in the closer shot without there being time to move it. It's very slight but still noticeable.
Answer: As seen in the first film and in this one, Lecter demonstrates an almost supernatural ability for eluding the law and seemingly being in two places at once. This film was made in the year 2000, before airport security became extremely tight in late 2001. At that time (before 9/11), it was still possible to enter an airport's main concourse through the baggage claim or even from the tarmac without passing through rigorous security. As ingenious as Lecter was, he could have accessed the airport in a number of ways back then. Relieving another passenger of his boarding pass and identification would be no problem for Lecter, either (simply leave the passenger's body in an airport toilet and assume his identity). For the most part, it was Lecter's calm, self-confident charm that allowed him to slither through society always ten steps ahead of the law.
Charles Austin Miller