Monday, January 6, 2014

The Shawshank Redemption

For those of you who have never flipped to TNT at an indiscriminate time, The Shawshank Redemption, an adaptation of a Stephen King novella, tells the story of Andy Dufresne (Tim Robbins), a timid Maine banker unjustly convicted of slaying his wife and her lover, sent to do hard time under a sadistic warden (Bob Gunton). Eventually gaining his footing, Andy befriends a fellow lifer (Morgan Freeman), earns the respect of the guards and his fellow inmates, and gradually prompts a miraculous reversal of fortune through hard work and an unyielding clinging to the idea of hope. Because of how special it was to me as a kid, it would be unfair to knock Frank Darabont's cherished film, even though it largely plays like self-parody when viewed today, especially during Freeman's pious narration. It's a well-made, extremely positive picture, containing many twists and turns that play like gangbusters the first several times you see the picture, which is about the greatest accomplishment a movie can achieve, but I also think the droves of people citing this as the best movie ever made really need to see more movies.