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The Shawshank Redemption
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Reviews & Ratings for
The Shawshank Redemption More at IMDbPro »

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5 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Stephen King's prison tale with a happy ending...

Author: Neil Doyle from U.S.A.
17 September 2006

THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION is a kind of morality tale that is definitely one of Stephen King's more restrained kind of stories, dealing mostly with a character study of two individuals sharing imprisonment and the consequences that await them when the tale ends.

TIM ROBBINS is a man wrongly convicted of murder and serving a long prison term while MORGAN FREEMAN (who plays the narrator with great dignity) describes himself as "the only guilty man in Shawshank." The hardships of prison life are captured in brief scenes that make the viewer wish that Robbins will find a way of escape.

Along the way, he is gang raped by prisoners and treated harshly by a brutal warden and some of his spirit seems to vanish. But Robbins is quietly effective as a prisoner who makes a good adjustment when he takes charge of the prison library and sees to it that there's a wider selection of books than the kind of potboilers that King is noted for writing. A touch of irony here, no? The closing scenes are a bit of a stretch and a reminder of just who wrote this prison tale--but still, they make an impact because of all that happens before.

It's a bittersweet story, a sort of horrific fairy-tale of what might have happened, but the viewer will be caught up in the story because of the tremendously skillful story-telling magic of Stephen King and director Frank Darabont who also wrote the screenplay.

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8 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

The shortest long movie I've ever seen. Kept me wanting more and more, minute by minute.

Author: Bernard Sandberg from Oslo, Norway
20 December 2002

At first, before starting the movie, I thought "Sounds like a typical prison riot and break-out kind of movie". At the beginning of the movie, my thoughts was even more convincing. A large prison (Which immediately reminded me of the movie "The Last Castle" from 2001), housing people of all sorts, having it's guards, warden and of course, the inmates. The typical inmate; Roughneck, hard on the outside, broken on the inside. And they all claim their innocence, as an internal joke sort of speak.

It gets to a point where I started comparing it with others. That proved wrong in quite a short while, from the point where a prisoner, framed for murder of his wife and her lover, is being convicted and sentenced to life in prison. His name was Andy Dufresne. In short terms, a straight-up bank employee, excellent with numbers and taxes, which he also uses to benefit within the walls of the prison. His reputation as a numerological genius spreads out, and soon all kinds of people, inmates and guards, are coming to him for financial advice. He builds up a library, he maintains a strict surface. He has his hobbies, to keep his mind busy (as said in the movie). He carves chess pieces out of stone, using an axe as the tool. Seemingly, this is a nice and lucrative hobby, but underneath it all, he has a secret...

The movie keeps the viewer thrilled and excited, because in every minute, something could happen. The dialog is good, Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman, both great actors, shows and outstanding play. The crew really did good work on the set, the right camera angles, the light, sounds and so was almost like I could smell the prison!

A brilliant movie. Not too short, not too long. It's worth every minute watching! My highest recommendation for those who like drama, action and humor.

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9 out of 14 people found the following review useful:

Best of all time!!!

Author: kysersoze-1 from India
3 July 2010

This is the best movie I have ever seen. In a way I feel I am in a prison of life myself. Restricted to doing certain things. Sometimes I get frustrated and feel as I should runaway to some place where I could feel free. I hope and dream for it sometime. This movie just reminds me of my feelings so much. I love Andy Dufresne most in this movie. Although critics say Tim Robbins didn't do enough to express the character but my personal opinion is that he was made for this role.

I can go on and say more but I said the most important thing which I feel whenever I watch it.

I am glad to visit IMDb. I never heard of it before. Some 7 years ago I saw it at no.2 in the rankings and decided to watch it immediately. Only other movie which even comes close to this is Citizen Kane. But that is about past and this one is about hope and freedom.

I give it 11/10.

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14 out of 24 people found the following review useful:


Author: mocpacific from Canada
3 June 2010

I still can't quite get the enormous reputation of this film. I saw it again last night and instead of clearing up the mystery, the mystery got thicker. It is enjoyable film with very good performances by Tim Robbins, Morgan Freeman, James Whitmore etc, but...the most highly rated film ever? I don't get it. The voice over alone seems to belong to a so so film. I love Morgan Freeman's voice but he's telling us what we're seeing. So, the sterling reputation damages the enjoyment of the film because one is expecting something that never, really, arrives. The most interesting aspect is Tim Robbins's psychological journey. Credible or incredible doesn't quite matter, I did go with him without asking too many questions. Morgan Freeman's humanity is contagious and inspiring, whether credible or not because I bought it. So, a masterpiece? No. Good, even very good? Yes.

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16 out of 28 people found the following review useful:

For the first time the Movie defeats the Book!

Author: mash34th from Bangladesh
17 June 2006

As an omnivorous reader movies are always second to books to me. I can never defeat the book because while reading book we use our own imagination....and movie narrows down the only allows us to see how the director has imagined the book.

But Believe me...this is not the case of The Shawshank Redemption...which I rate as the best movie I have ever seen.For the first time in history the book(the Stephen King Novella) has been defeated by its movie version.After watching the movie I was crazy about reading the book....I thought wow!the movie is so will be the book!!To tell U frankly,the book is good, but the movie is best.There are some unforgettable scenes in the movie which were not in the book.Some examples are: The scene when Andy locks up the guard and play the opera on the microphone.The narration goes on like.."I didn't understand a single word that Italian lady was singing...but I tell U..for that single second every soul in the Shawshank prison felt free..."The scene just fill my heart with Andy's yearn for freedom...I was kinda shocked when I didn't find it in the original book version.

I can remember another scene.While Andy creates the prison library and starts listing books sent to prison from charity organizations...a fellow inmate tries to read a name on the book...Alexandre Dumas as "Dumb-Ass". Andy says...."its not Dumb-ass...its Dumas..and U may like the book..The Count of Monty Cristo...its about a jailbreak.And the category it falls is Fiction" Then Red says.."Why don't we put it on Educational category?"(Right before Andy listed an engineering handbook as "Educational" category).As Count of Monticristo is one of my favorite books, I was hysteric watching this sophisticated joke.This was also not in the book.

This DVD is my favorite gift I give my friends. And after they watch it....they always thank me . Like many other IMDb friends commenting on this movie..I would also like to say.."Shawshank Redemption is the best movie I have ever seen in my life".Thanx to all.

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29 out of 54 people found the following review useful:

Over Rated

Author: dbborroughs from Glen Cove, New York
24 April 2004

There is no denying that this is a very good movie. The acting is great and it tells a good story.

Personally, I find it a bit too long and a little too sweet for my taste, but its far from a bad film.

On the other end of the spectrum I have yet to understand why this film was nominated for as many Oscars as it was and why so many people have fallen in love with it. To place it on the same level as The Godfather and several hundred other films has to be the result of different tastes.

This is a film that should be seen because its a good movie, not because its a great one.

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39 out of 74 people found the following review useful:

Very enjoyable, but let's not go overboard, folks

Author: TheRumpus from Seattle, Washington
29 July 2000

THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION is very enjoyable, features excellent performances, and has won a fanatical following among a lot of people. I just saw it. I liked it. But as for becoming fanatically enthusiastic about it, all I can say is, folks, let's not get carried away...

The story not only is incredibly *simple* (good man unjustly convicted for horrible crime maintains hope in horrible confinement), but is also incredibly *simplistic* (the Warden and his men are evil goons, the convicts are good). Complexity is something completely exiled from this story.

The director, Frank Durabont, offers nothing new in his aesthetic choices -- SHAWSHANK is stock Hollywood filmmaking, especially of the Spielbergian variety ala THE COLOR PURPLE and AMISTAD. The soundtrack is overpowering in its efforts to imbue the story with "heartwrenching emotion." The cinematography is fine in a sort-of standard-issue, "seen it before" way.

Which begs the question: Is there anything truly *exceptional* about THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION? Heck yeah -- Morgan Freeman proves, once again, that he is not only a wonderful actor but also one of the most endearing, powerful presences in cinema. Tim Robbins is fine, along with all of the convicts.

But overall, I didn't mistake THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION for anything particularly new, remarkable, exciting -- in other words, as anything worthy of fanatical enthusiasm. It's a fine Hollywood film that looks, smells, sounds and feels like your typical fine Hollywood film. But nothing more.

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

What More Can I Say?

Author: Lucy Webb from United Kingdom
20 May 2014

There are only a handful of films that have shaken me to my core and continued to resonate with me for very long after their first viewing. I can happily say that "The Shawshank Redemption" has stuck to me since I finished watching it for the first time, and instantly rocketed up my Top 10 Films list.

Most great films have one or two obvious flaws that can be easily picked out - not so in "Shawshank", at least not to me. The hefty run time doesn't put me off because the story and characters are just so well rounded and so easy to return to time and time again.

"Shawshank" is one of those films that I would love to experience for the first time all over again. The thrill of emotions and the highs and lows I felt that first time are incomparable to much else.

In my opinion, "Forrest Gump" was not as deserving of the Best Picture Oscar as this. The timeless feel of a story of friendship in a hopeless place will likely continue to capture generations of people for years to come.

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Brilliant & Excellent

Author: meetnavpk from United Kingdom
13 September 2013

By far the best movie ever...

No Doubt this is the best ever movie you will ever see, It is easily the best movie of my life-time so far.

Morgan Free is a legend and Rest of the Crew did a marvellous job as well. Well written / narrated and directed movie of all times.

10 out 10.

It has been on number one ranking on IMDb and most of the other movie rating websites forever now.

The best past of the movie is narrated voice by Morgan Freeman.

The character Andy Dufrain is a very well composed and the Warden character has lot of punch into it.

Escape from prison was the best it can ever get.

Marvellous piece of Art.

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

The Story of Friendship and Hope...

Author: turtleggs from Turkey
13 July 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Maybe I'm writing a review too late for this movie, but I think I must write something for this.

Shawshank Redemption is a truly A Class movie that teaches us many things like friendship and never gave up your hope. Unlike other users, I think this movie deserves to be in IMDb Top 250 list. Today, IMDb's Top 250 List approved and considered by everyone. So, everybody must see that this movie is in top and must watch it to see why IMDb puts this movie on top and not Godfather.

I really like the role of Red by Morgan Freeman. He really acts like a experienced jail-mate. Andy Dufresne is okay too.

What I really like is that, I really love the end. Maybe this is the best ending ever. I really like how Red laughs to Andy about pickaxe and Andy dig 19 years ( WOW !) to made a hole in the wall, how he escape and become a person he made it up for Warden's dirty job, how his dreams come true and lastly after 5 years in jail after Andy escaped, how Red not decided to suicide, decided to follow Andy.

Best Movie Ever...


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