nothing more to say
When The Shawshank Redemption was released in 1994, some critics complained that this popular prison drama was too long to sustain its plot. Those complaints miss the point, because the passage of time is crucial to this story about patience, the squeaky wheels of justice and the growth of a life-long friendship. Only when the film reaches its final, emotionally satisfying scene do you fully understand why writer-director Frank Darabont (adapting a novella by Stephen King) allows the story to unfold at its necessary pace.
Tim Robbins plays a banker named Andy who is sent to Shawshank Prison on a murder charge, but as he gets to know a life-term prisoner named Red (Morgan Freeman), we soon realise his claims of innocence are credible. We also realise that Andy's calm, quiet exterior hides a great reserve of patience and fortitude, and Red comes to admire this mild-mannered man who first struck him as weak and unfit for prison life. So it is that The Shawshank Redemption builds considerable impact as a prison drama that defies the conventions of the genre (violence, brutality, riots) to illustrate its theme of faith, friendship and survival. Nominated for seven Academy Awards including Best Picture, Actor and Screenplay, it's a remarkable film (which movie lovers count among their all-time favourites) that signalled the arrival of a promising new filmmaker.
On the DVD: The Shawshank Redemption limited-edition release contains the complete 48-minute documentary "Shawshank: The Redeeming Feature", including interviews with all the principal cast and crew; plus more interview material and the theatrical trailer. --Jeff Shannon