The Shawshank Redemption (1994)

Description

Two life sentences for a 1947 double murder land an innocent man (Tim Robbins) in a corrupt Maine penitentiary.

Directed/Produced by:
  • Frank Darabont
  • Frank Darabont
  • Liz Glotzer
  • David V. Lester
  • Niki Marvin
Cast:
  • Tim Robbins
  • Morgan Freeman
  • Bob Gunton
  • William Sadler
  • Clancy Brown
  • Gil Bellows
  • James Whitmore
  • Mark Rolston
  • Jeffrey DeMunn

Review

A story of hope is just about the last thing you’d expect to find in a prison movie. But in The Shawshank Redemption, that’s exactly what you get.

Shawshank
is the story of Andy Dufresne (Tim
Robbins), a man convicted of murdering his wife and her lover and shipped to a maximum-security prison in Shawshank, Maine, for two consecutive life sentences. Over the next years (two hours, movie time), he finds his way
to inner peace and self-reliance in the midst of the terror and inequity of
the prison system.

It’s also one of
those movies that is a work of both art and magic. It paints the picture of a man who
will not relinquish the only thing that cannot be taken from him by external forces:
hope. And yet, like Andy, you are completely
enveloped by Shawshank. From the first shot of the prison — an
utterly gothic structure that assaults you with a sense of foreboding — you get a sense of how grim life inside must be. You experience a prison life composed of routine and debasement.

The performances in Shawshank are
top notch, and the commentary upon the justice system is both thoughtful
and thought-provoking. This is
a film with remarkable staying power. It sustains its suspense and tension throughout; its remarkably hopeful story is thoroughly engrossing. In the end of it all, Andy will escape
Shawshank. You will escape Shawshank. But you will not escape The Shawshank Redemption.