Originally, Tom Hanks was going to play the old Paul Edgecomb but the makeup tests did not make him look credible enough to be an elderly man. Dabbs Greer was cast instead as the older Paul Edgecomb. See more »
The movie shows mixed black and white prisoners both in the prison population and on the chain gang. In the 1930s this would not have happened. See more »
Old Paul Edgecomb:
They usually call death row the Last Mile, but we called ours the Green Mile, because the floor was the color of faded limes. We had the electric chair then. Old Sparky, we called it. I've lived a lot of years, Ellie, but 1935 takes the prize. That was the year I had the worst urinary infection of my life. That was also the year of John Coffey and the two dead girls.
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There are no opening credits after the title has been shown, followed by the opening scene for place of film. Although it is now commonplace for films to not have opening credits, in 1999 it was somewhat rather unusually and it was considered for a trademark of director Frank Darabont. See more »
Having seen the movie, The Green Mile, and read the novel of the same name by Stephen King, I am glad to say that the movie stays true to the book, which in itself is a great read.
I read the book in one setting about a year ago, and after seeing the movie, I didn't see one scene from the book, or one plot point, left out. There were a few minor changes from the book but which in no way detract from either work.
As far as performances, I can imagine many people pointing to Michael Duncan as John Coffey or Tom Hanks as Paul Edgecomb as the best performances of the movie, and they are good, but I would hope that Michael Jeter would receive recognition for portraying Eduard Delacroix. He plays Delacroix exactly as I pictured him when I read the book.
I can very well see why King himself said this is his favorite of the movies adapted from his novels. It is the only one played out as he had written it.
I wouldn't compare this movie or the book to (Rita Hayworth and) The Shawshank Redemption because that would be unfair to both. They are both great, but are both different. The Green Mile isn't a movie about hope and friendship, as The Shawshank Redemption was, it is a movie about a miracle of a man, and the people he affects.
But like The Shawshank Redemption, I give The Green Mile 4 out of 4 stars. Great story, great cast, great look.
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