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Review of the Shawshank Redemption


It is really an amazing movie I have ever seen in my lifetime. The cast and the story of the movie are really successful. Andy is a passionate character, and he is convicted of murdering his wife and her lover despite his claims of innocence. It is so touching to spend almost two decades in the prison. Old-fashioned prisons in the 90s are full of bad guys who do not expect anything from the life. And, they do not think how they escape here. However, Andy with his close friend in the prison, Red, tries redemption from this prison, by the time, Andy tries to do beautiful things for people in the prison not to attract attention. It is unbelievable that they escape from the prison. But, Andy approaches to place of exit. It is actually amazing, it is really incredible. They go to their dreams to live a peaceful and quiet life. Also, Andy prepares a trap for the chief of the jail. After the redemption, they become free anymore. It is really an amazing movie. Easily one of the best movies made during the 90s and definitely one of the top “prison ” movie of all-time. The more time you watch it, the more you love it, and the more you learn from it. An absolutely encouraging story to those who are desperate or sad or complaining about bad luck. If you never give up and try to figure out a way ahead, nothing can stop you to the brightness and freedom. Everything you have experienced will bring you positive influences if you take it positively. I used it to encourage people around me, for example, a girl who is suffering from the depression, a classmate who has just lost her favorite pet, and a friend who lost his job recently.

Key words:

Hope; redemption; freedom; courage


1. Production

Frank Darabont secured the film adaptation rights from author Stephen King after impressing the author with his short film adaptation of The Woman in the Room in 1983. Although the two had become friends and maintained a pen-pal relationship, Darabont did not work with hin until four years later in1987, when he optioned to adapt Shawshank. This is

one of the more famous Dallar Deals made by King with aspiring filmmakers. Darabont later directed The Green Mile(1999), which was based on another work about a prison by King, and then followed that up with an adaptation of King‟s novella The Mist.

Rob Reiner, who had previously adapted King‟s novella The body into the film Stand by Me(1986), offered $2.5 million in an attempt to write and direct Shawshank. He planned to cast Tom Ccuise in thepart of Andy and Harrison Ford as Red. Darabont admired and seriously considered Reiner ‟s vision, but ultimately decided that directing the film himself was his “chance to do something reallygreat”.

2. Themes

Chicago Sun-Times reviewer Roger Ebert argued that The Shawshank Redemption is an allegory for maintaining one‟s feeling of self-worth when placed in a hopeless position. Andy Dufredne‟s integrity is an inportant theme in the story line, especially in prison, where integrity is lacking. Isaac M, Morehouse suggests that the film provides a great illustration of how characters can be free, even in prison, or unfree, even in freedom, based on their outlooks on life.Actor Tim Robbins noted that the story is unique in depicting a nonsexual love story between two men.

3. Plot In 1947 Portland, Maine, banker Andy Dufresne is convicted of murdering his wife and her lover, and is sentenced to two consecutivelife sentences at the Shawshank State Penitentiary. Andy is befriended by contraband smuggler, Ellis "Red" Redding, an inmate serving a life sentence. Red procures a rock hammer and later a large poster of Rita Hayworth for Andy. Working in the prison laundry, Andy is regularly assaulted by "the Sisters" and their leader, Bogs.

In 1949, Andy overhears the captain of the guards, Byron Hadley, complaining about being taxed on an inheritance , and offers to help him legally shelter the money. After an assault by the Sisters nearly kills Andy, Hadley beats Bogs severely. Bogs is then transferred to another prison. Warden Samuel Norton meets Andy and reassigns him to the prison library to assist elderly inmate Brooks Hatlen. Andy's new job is a pretext for him to begin managing financial matters for the prison employees. As time passes, the Warden begins using Andy to handle matters for a variety of people, including guards from other prisons and the warden

himself. Andy begins writing weekly letters asking the state government for funds to improve the decaying library.

In 1954, Brooks is paroled, but cannot adjust to the outside world after fifty years in prison, and commits suicide by hanging himself. Andy receives a library donation that includes a recording of The Marriage of Figaro. He play s an excerpt over the public address system, resulting in him receiving solitary confinement. After his release from solitary, Andy explains that hope is what gets him through his time, a concept that Red dismisses. In 1963, Norton begins exploiting prison labor for public works, profiting by undercutting skilled labor costs and receiving bribes . He has Andy launder the money using the alias Randall Stephens.

In 1965, Tommy Williams is incarcerated for burglary. He is befriended by Andy and Red, and Andy helps him pass his GED exam. In 1966, Tommy reveals to Red and Andy that an inmate at another prison claimed responsibility for the murders for which Andy was convicted. Andy approaches Norton with this information, but he refuses to listen and sends Andy back to solitary confinement when he mentions the money laundering. Norton has Hadley murder Tommy under the guise of an escape attempt. Andy declines to continue the laundering, but relents after Norton threatens to burn the library, remove Andy's protection from the guards, and move him to worse conditions. Andy is released from solitary confinement after two months, and tells Red of his dream of living in Zihuatanejo, a Mexican coastal town. Red feels Andy is being unrealistic, but promises Andy that if he is ever released, he will visit a specific hayfield near Buxton, Maine, and retrieve a package Andy buried there. He worries about Andy's well-being, especially when he learns Andy asked another inmate to supply him with six feet (1.8 meters) of rope.

The next day at roll call, the guards find Andy's cell empty. An irate Norton throws a rock at the poster ofRaquel Welch hanging on the cell wall, revealing a tunnel that Andy dug with his rock hammer over the last 19 years. The previous night, Andy escaped through the tunnel and prison sewage pipe, using the rope to bring with him Norton's suit, shoes, and the ledger containing details of the money laundering. While guards search for him, Andy poses as Randall Stephens and visits several banks to withdraw the laundered money, then mails the ledger and evidence of the corruption and murders at Shawshank to a local newspaper. FBI

agents arrive at Shawshank and take Hadley into custody, while Norton commits suicide by shooting himself to avoid his arrest.

After serving forty years, Red is finally paroled. He struggles to adapt to life outside prison and fears he never will. Remembering his promise to Andy, he visits Buxton and finds a cache containing money and a letter asking him to come to Zihuatanejo. Red violates his parole and travels to Fort Hancock, Texas to cross the border to Mexico, admitting he finally feels hope. On a beach in Zihuatanejo he finds Andy, and the two friends are happily reunited.

4. Achievement

The film was nominated for seven Academy Awards in1994, the most for a Stephen King film adaption, without winning in any category: Best picture, Best Actor for freeman, Best Adapted Screenplay for Frank Darabont, Best Cinematography for Roger Deakins, Best Editing for Richard Francis Bruce, Best Original Score for Thomas Newman, and Best Sound Mixing for Robert J.Litt, Elliot Tyson, Michael Herdick, and Willie D. Burton. It received two Golden Award nominations for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture for Freeman, and Best Screenplay for Outstanding Preformance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role at the inaugural Screen Actors Guild Awards in 1995.Darabont was nominated for a Directors Gulid of America award in 1994 for Best Directof for a feature film, whilr cinematographer Roger Deakins won the American Society of Cinematographers award for Outsanding Achievement in Cinematography.


It is one of the finest films made in recent years. It is a poignant story about hope. Hope gets me. That is what makes a film like this more than a movie. It tells a lesson about life. Those are the films people talk about 50 or 100 years from you. It is also a story for freedom. Freedom from isolation, from rule, from bigotry and hate. Freeman and Robbins are majestic in their performances. Each learns from the other. Their relationship is strong and you feel that from the first moment they make contact with one another. There is also a wonderful performance from legend James Whitmore as Brooks. He shines when it is his time to go back into the world grew up so fast he never even got a chance to blink. Steephen King‟ss

story is brought to the screen with greet elegance and excitement. It is an extraordinary motion that people will be talking about in 50 or 100 years.

Busy dying or busy living? That is a question. Many people in this world are unhappy. Most people in this world do not want to be unhappy. Lots of people wish, pray and abovee all hope for that magic want to wave and wash them of their fears, losses, angers and pains once and for all. They see lots of other people seemingly in this magical state, while they suffer. To borrow the words of aanother film, they are watching the bluebirds and fairytales do not come true. It is not that no one lives happily ever after, it is just that they are not going to. They are busy dying.

In this film, or as some people have quite correctly said, this fairytale, magic wands exist. Andd that magic wand is Andy Dufrense imitating Houdini. However this film is not about him. Neither is it about the prison, the governor, the guard, the plot, the acting, the cinrmatography, the script, the direction or the score.

The trouble is, if you are already busy living, this film would not mean that much and you will see it a littlle more clearly than those busy dying. To those fortunate individuals, watch this film and understand what the rest of us are going through. So, this film is a cliched fairytale and maybe as a story it is not realistic and at second on the IMDb all time list, it is a bit over-rated. However if you could have a chart of films listing the number of lives saved, altered and improved, the Shawahank Redemption would be way out in front at number one.


1. Adams, Russell(May 22, 2014). “The Shawshank Residuals ”. The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved February 5, 2015.

2. Destries, Michael(July 30, 2012). “Good News: The Shawshank Oak Tree is Alive and Well ”.Ecorazzi.

3. Ebert, Roger(1999.10.17). “Great Movies: The Shawshank Redemption ”. Chicago Sun-Times. Archived from the original on 2010.04.13.

4. Heidenry, Margaret. “The Little-Known Story of How The Shawshank Redemption Became One of the Most Beloved Films of All Time”. Retrieved July 23, 2016.

5. Rauzi, Robin(1993.12.01). “Doing „Redemption ‟ Time in a Former Prison”. Los Angeles Time. Retrieved 2013.03.11.