The Shawshank Redemption, a movie review

A movie review written by: Lee Sonogan

(1994) 2h22min/ Drama, crime


My favourite drama movie of all time and the top-rated movie on the website IMDB. The film tells the story of Andy Dufresne, a banker who is sentenced to life in Shawshank State Penitentiary for the murder of his wife and her lover, despite his claims of innocence. During his time at the prison, he befriends a fellow inmate, Red, and finds himself protected by the guards after the warden begins using him in his money-laundering operation. This movie stars Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman in one of their most known movies.

The movie was directed and written by Frank Darabont and adapted from a novel. Frank Darabont wrote the script in eight weeks. Stephen King sold the rights to the novella Rita Hayworth & Shawshank Redemption very cheaply out of his friendship with Frank Darabont. They had originally become friends when Darabont adapted a short story of King’s called The Woman in the Room and King was thoroughly impressed. They maintained a pen pal relationship and didn’t actually meet until Darabont optioned Shawshank.

With a budget of $25 million, this movie manages to make $58 million at the box office. Clint Eastwood, Harrison Ford, Paul Newman and Robert Redford were all considered for the part of Red. In the original novella, Red is a middle-aged Irishman with greying red hair. However, Frank Darabont always had Morgan Freeman in mind for the role because of his authoritative presence, demeanour and deep voice. The movie is Morgan Freeman’s favourite film of his own.

Jeff Bridges, Tom Hanks, Kevin Costner, Tom Cruise, Nicolas Cage, Johnny Depp and Charlie Sheen were all considered for the part of Andy Dufresne. Hanks turned it down because he was committed to Forrest Gump. Costner liked the script a lot but was then embroiled in the filming of Waterworld.

In conclusion, fun fact: This was Morgan Freeman’s first time narrating a movie. This movie excels in Dialog, story, acting, imagery, scenes and so much more. Some many scenes of this movie have been copied and parodied and so much other stuff that most of you will most likely know a decent amount about this film. But anyways, how the two main characters maintain one feeling of self-worth in a hopeless place is done in a perfect way. One of the best ever satisfying endings you could see in a movie and the lead-up and story to it is definitely a must-watch. I recommend this movie to everyone as it is a prison movie but done in a classic and original way.


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