The Shawshank Redemption (1994)

The Shawshank Redemption
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High level coarse language, Medium level violence

Director: Frank Darabont
Actors: Morgan Freeman, Clancy Brown, William Sadler, Tim Robbins, James Whitmore, Gil Bellows, Bob Gunton

TIM ROBBINS (The Player, Bob Roberts, The Hudsucker Proxy) and Academy Award nominee, MORGAN FREEMAN (Unforgiven, Driving Miss Daisy, Seven), star in this unforgettable story of hope, friendship and survival inside maximum security jail. From the Stephen King novella "Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption" featured in the best seller "Different Seasons". Andy Dufresne (Robbins), a New England banker convicted of murdering his wife and her lover, is sent to Shawshank State Prison where he meets "Red" Redding (Freeman), a seasoned lifer. Despite twenty years on the inside, the prison bars fail to contain their spirits; and the pair forge an unlikely friendship, one that overcomes pain, suffering and ultimately leads to a chance at freedom.

DVD
Status: HighDemand
Run time: 136mins
Origin: UNITED STATES
Aspect Ratio: 16:9 Enhanced
Audio Formats: English Dolby Digital 2.0 surround-encoded English Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles:
Play It Again
by Jess Lomas,

A tale of overcoming adversity, the triumph of the human spirit, and the power of friendship, set in a men’s prison circa 1946. It hardly stands out on paper as a film that would rank as the all-time favourite for so many, but director Frank Darabont’s The Shawshank Redemption, an adaptation of Stephen King’s novella, has developed a cult following since its 1994 release. After being convicted of the shooting murder of his wife and her lover, straight-laced banker Andy Dufresne (Tim Robbins) is sent to Shawshank State Penitentiary in Maine to serve two life sentences. Inside he discovers who to avoid (the “Sisters” intent of having their way with him), and those who’ll look out for him, including fellow-lifer Ellis “Red” Redding (Morgan Freeman), who can get him anything he wants. We fol...

A tale of overcoming adversity, the triumph of the human spirit, and the power of friendship, set in a men’s prison circa 1946. It hardly stands out on paper as a film that would rank as the all-time favourite for so many, but director Frank Darabont’s The Shawshank Redemption, an adaptation of Stephen King’s novella, has developed a cult following since its 1994 release.

After being convicted of the shooting murder of his wife and her lover, straight-laced banker Andy Dufresne (Tim Robbins) is sent to Shawshank State Penitentiary in Maine to serve two life sentences. Inside he discovers who to avoid (the “Sisters” intent of having their way with him), and those who’ll look out for him, including fellow-lifer Ellis “Red” Redding (Morgan Freeman), who can get him anything he wants.

We follow Andy’s progress over two decades as he gains favour with the prison guards, dispensing financial advice in exchange for preferential treatment and protection. His skills eventually see him helping Warden Norton (Bob Gunton) launder money obtained from exploiting prisoners for labour. When he hears about an inmate at another penitentiary claiming responsibility for the murders he is serving time for, he appeals to the Warden for a new investigation. Andy’s pleas are ignored, inspiring him to put a secret, twenty-year plan into motion.

The film barely covered its budget upon its cinematic release; even its seven Oscar nominations struggled to raise its profile as home entertainment would in later years. While it requires patience to fully appreciate the rare male friendship captured, it still holds up on multiple viewings. It also marks the first time Freeman would add narration; his trademark drawl, perfectly suited to this film, would wind up a curse on movie narration for years to come.

Just how much one loves this picture is dependent on their emotional investment in Andy and Red (performed strongly by Robbins and Freeman). As the film stays true to the prison story formula, stereotypical characters included, it is these performances that draw you in and keep you watching.

3.5/5

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Member Reviews (63)

Just don't get why this movie is so popular. I've tried to watch it a few times, but this is the first time I managed to get to the end (thought if I kept watching I might reach the part where it transcends the mediocre, but no). I found it overly sentimental (which jail is not), peopled by non-credible characters (a murdering lifer with a plummy voice like Morgan Freeman?) and 2-dimensional bad guys, with a saccharine-sweet ending. There have been some good, gritty movies based on the experience of being in jail, but this isn't one of them.
Posted Wednesday, 29 January 2014 See my other reviews
Tina
says
Hands down one of the best movies ever made. Whenever somebody asks what my favorite movie is The Shawshank Redemption is always up in my top 5 favorite movies of all time. It is a MUST SEE!
Posted Wednesday, 1 January 2014 See my other reviews
This is just the BEST movie ever! If you haven't seen it then you must!! LOVE LOVE LOVE IT!!
Posted Tuesday, 16 July 2013 See my other reviews
Judy E
says
Absolutely one of the best films ever produced.
Posted Sunday, 19 May 2013 See my other reviews
John V It just goes to show what you can achieve if you want to lead a full life - nothing will stop you. A wonderful film.
Posted Sunday, 19 May 2013 See my other reviews
Chook
says
Posted Wednesday, 8 May 2013 See my other reviews
three words: BEST MOVIE EVER!!!
Posted Friday, 14 December 2012 See my other reviews
kimbo
says
This is the best film ever made. Number one on all counts
Posted Saturday, 10 November 2012 See my other reviews
Superb film. So much that I want to buy it
Posted Friday, 21 September 2012 See my other reviews
checky
says
One of the best all time cult classics, that should be in your top five movie pics of all time. Superb acting and gritty storyline, with excellent subplots and feel good ending.
Posted Wednesday, 11 April 2012 See my other reviews
meegz
says
a must see for those who always wondered
Posted Tuesday, 28 February 2012 See my other reviews
Clinton
says
Sentimental and patronising.
Posted Tuesday, 3 January 2012 See my other reviews
Ben
says
Its crap
Posted Tuesday, 13 December 2011 See my other reviews
Matt
says
A wonderfully produced movie. Incredible story balanced with brilliant acting and wonderful cinematography.
Posted Thursday, 8 December 2011 See my other reviews
Fillskit
says
One of the greatest films of our time - it blew me away when I watched it in the cinema at the age of 14 and it still captivates me now - a true classic
Posted Friday, 28 October 2011 See my other reviews
Chris
says
Without doubt one of the best movies you will see. Brilliant!
Posted Tuesday, 27 September 2011 See my other reviews
NPB
says
One of the classic "Must see" movies of all time
Posted Sunday, 24 July 2011 See my other reviews
Chondryma
says
This is one of the best movies I have ever seen. You have to seriously hook onto the plot to get the actual feel of the movie and you'll love it. Well emoted by all the actors and very bold storyline... Jus love it !!
Posted Tuesday, 14 June 2011 See my other reviews
margaret worth
says
I like it very much - very good 4 to 5 starts
Posted Thursday, 2 June 2011 See my other reviews
Ian
says
Simple review... My favourite movie of all time, it's a cracker.
Posted Tuesday, 11 January 2011 See my other reviews
Antony D
says
What a brilliant movie! It is so good, that I had to read the 'blurb' to check if it was a real story or not ! Stephen King - excellent story teller, this movie of his book... Many twists and turns, all fit in like a glove, and a very believable ending. Acting was very realistic. I cant fault anything of this movie
Posted Sunday, 7 November 2010 See my other reviews
Viewer
says
Although originally panned by cinema-goers, I have always found this film particularly well made and highly enjoyable. Great to see Morgan Freeman (although it may only be in a supporting role) and Tim Robbins provide emotional depth to a colourful yet simple plotline. I highly recommend this to all.
Posted Wednesday, 8 September 2010 See my other reviews
Claire
says
I can't believe it took me this long to watch The Shawshank Redemption - I thought it would be long, miserable and depressing but it wasn't - the two hours flew by with a great message of hope and perseverance. Five star performances, five star script, five star movie.
Posted Friday, 3 September 2010 See my other reviews
Peter
says
FANTASTIC movie - would be one of the best if not the best movies we have ever watched. Although quite a long movie went quite quickly. Incredible that the movie was pretty much entirely based in a prison.
Posted Friday, 21 May 2010 See my other reviews
Deirdre R.
says
I can't believe I've put off watching this film for years as I thought it would be too depressing and heavy. It is, however, an uplifting story of hope and justice and I absolutely loved it! Definitely one of the best dramas I've ever seen with an extraordinarily good cast and brilliant direction. I will be buying a copy for my own collection.
Posted Monday, 10 May 2010 See my other reviews
Brian Baxter.
says
The acting is brillant. Morgan Freeman is the best around. Tim Robbins almost keeps up with him. A must see film!
Posted Tuesday, 30 March 2010 See my other reviews
Allan S.
says
Exelent movie well worth watching
Posted Friday, 24 July 2009 See my other reviews
Lisa
says
great movie one that i would watch over and over
Posted Thursday, 12 February 2009 See my other reviews
Ammar
says
One of the best movies I have ever seen. I haven't seen a person in last 14 years who didn't like this movie. Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman at their best. Definitely 5 star.
Posted Friday, 24 October 2008 See my other reviews
Ian H.
says
Not usually a fan of Stephen King [didn't like The Green Mile], but this movie was simply superb; superb acting, a wonderful script, and a fantastic exploration of hope.
Posted Monday, 1 September 2008 See my other reviews
Vlad G.
says
one of the greatest films ever made. captivating and moving. ranked #2 all time on imdb.
Posted Friday, 23 May 2008 See my other reviews
Debbie B.
says
One of the best movies of all time - terrific story, wonderful acting and an exceptional ending
Posted Tuesday, 15 April 2008 See my other reviews
Michael M.
says
excellent movie that would appeal to a wide audience. Great performance by lead actor.
Posted Friday, 14 March 2008 See my other reviews
Alistair C.
says
More to it than expected. Good story, good acting. Suss hollywood ending but I guess that's Ok.
Posted Wednesday, 9 January 2008 See my other reviews
Sabrina H.
says
The best film ever made - and goodness knows I am not one to judge films kindly. It is my all-time favourite and has every right to be: the truly brilliant acting, characterisation, plot development, heartstopping twists and deeply emotional story will leave you astounded. There never was a more perfect piece of cinema. 10 out of 5.
Posted Sunday, 30 December 2007 See my other reviews
Andrea W.
says
Best movie ever made! Nothing has yet to beat my top favourite. Although many have come close... Remember the Titans, Forrest Gump, Face Off to name a few.
Posted Sunday, 2 December 2007 See my other reviews
stimpy
says
The ending was a bit soft, but hope is what drives us all.
Posted Saturday, 1 December 2007 See my other reviews
Maureen E.
says
Posted Thursday, 9 August 2007 See my other reviews
Kiz
says
Best Prison movie I've ever seen!
Posted Wednesday, 18 July 2007 See my other reviews
Jose and Josephine
says
This would have to be up there with the all time greats, just brilliant
Posted Sunday, 13 May 2007 See my other reviews
JW
says
Posted Friday, 15 September 2006 See my other reviews
Stefano B.
says
Posted Friday, 4 August 2006 See my other reviews
Paul G.
says
What can you say about this classic movie. Brilliant cast Robbins and Freeman. Brilliant storyline from Stephen King. Brilliant movie all round. A must see if you haven't experienced this slice of Brilliance.
Posted Wednesday, 19 April 2006 See my other reviews
Philip W.
says
First class story,script,acting and cinematography. Some critics feel that the themes and characters are too sentimental and stereotyped, but this leads you to develop an empathy with the main characters rarely achieved in a film.
Posted Monday, 5 December 2005 See my other reviews
Bill W.
says
right up there with my all time favourites. Enjoy!
Posted Monday, 14 November 2005 See my other reviews
tiborg
says
This movie is a forgotten classic. Dealing with the tribulations, tennacity and hopes of people in hopless situation.While there is life there is HOPE!! Must see!!!
Posted Thursday, 10 November 2005 See my other reviews
Bill
says
One of my all time favourite movies.
Posted Tuesday, 1 November 2005 See my other reviews
Paula B.
says
If you liked The Green Mile, don't go past this nifty Triller/drama! Its an absolute MUST SEE, full of drama, violence, social commentary, and complex relationships. Its fantastic from the start and only gets more involved and better from there. I was glue to my seat in this mind blowing movie. It will make you laugh, think and even cry, what else could you ask for in a movie!
Posted Tuesday, 25 October 2005 See my other reviews
Barry
says
Although we have viewed this movie previously, it was a good reminder of people's tenacity in holding onto principles without reliquishing any good thoughts towards others.
Posted Thursday, 6 October 2005 See my other reviews
Elma Neale
says
Posted Friday, 13 May 2005 See my other reviews
Chister
says
it's fine line between heart strings tugging and trite manipulative mush... but, shawshank succeeds where so many other mainstream hollywood blockbusters fail, sure it is a bit mushy in some bits but a strong cast and good pacing makes this winner (compare this with the truly awful and plodding green mile by the same director), one that's worth checking out again if you haven't seen it in a while, it'll make ya feel good!
Posted Thursday, 17 March 2005 See my other reviews
Matthew Sullivan
says
Without doubt the best movie I have seen. Even my late father who hated movies for having to sit for 2+ hrs was engrossed!! Dont miss it!!
Posted Friday, 21 January 2005 See my other reviews
Stu Kelly
says
Posted Tuesday, 14 December 2004 See my other reviews
David Drewitt-Smith
says
Posted Sunday, 12 December 2004 See my other reviews
Chee Tai
says
Posted Thursday, 28 October 2004 See my other reviews
Wayne Baynham
says
Posted Monday, 18 October 2004 See my other reviews
XiaoLi
says
Few movies can be this good. Morgan Freeman, you rule, and your narration voice rules even more!
Posted Sunday, 15 August 2004 See my other reviews
Lisa Sanders
says
Posted Sunday, 25 July 2004 See my other reviews
Cinefile
says
Posted Thursday, 29 April 2004 See my other reviews
Allan Kingsbury
says
This is the third time in six months I have veiwed this fabulous movie. What more can I say, except that it's a movie I will always come back to. If you haven't seen it, then do yourself a favor ASAP.
Posted Tuesday, 6 April 2004 See my other reviews
Allan Kingsbury
says
I have to hand this movie five stars because I have watched it 3 times in the last 6 months and I enjoyed it every time.
Posted Friday, 2 April 2004 See my other reviews
James
says
Chris
says
BEST MOVIE EVER U BETA WATCH THIS MOVIE
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