The Shawshank Redemption (1994) 3.37/5 (5)


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Rating: The Good – 82.1
Genre: Drama
Duration: 142 mins
Director: Frank Darabont
Stars: Tim Robbins, Morgan Freeman, Bob Gunton

The most satisfying film-going experience you can ask for as Tim Robbins’ Andy Dufresne defies all the odds by crawling through a river of shit and coming out clean on the other side. The Shawshank Redemption is what movies are all about! Okay, so it offers a veritable feast of cliché (the nasty warden, the old prisoner who keeps a bird, etc.) but that really doesn’t matter because it all fits together so perfectly. Robbins is truly excellent as Dufresne, the “tall drink of water” banker sentenced to life for murdering his wife and her lover. His face and expressions are a picture of ambiguity (which is integral to the story) but he always remains eminently likable. Morgan Freeman as the man he strikes up a lifelong friendship with is every bit his match and their chemistry is among the best ever offered up by the medium. Frank Darabont deserves most plaudits however, not only for his brilliant adaptation of Stephen King’s short story but for his sublime pacing and that masterful blending of Roger Deacon’s impressive cinematography and Thomas Newman’s soul-stirring score. The Shawshank Redemption is far from the best film ever made as some of the more populist movie lists imply but it’s eminently enjoyable and that counts for a lot.

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