The Shawshank Redemption

release year: 1994
genre: drama
viewing setting: home DVD, 9/30/05 and 1/16/01

synopsis: Unlikely convict Andy Dufresne learns to survive in prison and, while he's at it, teaches some of the other convicts some valuable lessons about life and hope.

impressions: Wow. This is the sort of drama - and lord knows there aren't enough - that I actually enjoy. It didn't have lots of guns, or aliens, or murders, or special effects - just a simple story about the human spirit and never giving up hope. Though there are some nasty parts (it is, after all, set in a prison) this is a movie that should make you stand up and cheer.

things to watch for: The surprise ending.

something this movie has that no other movie has: ?

acting: Tim Robbins did a great job as Andy, while Morgan Freeman also excelled as Red, an older convict who also serves as a narrator. Also noteworthy were Bob Gunton as the nasty warden, Clancy Brown as the #1 guard, and James Whitmore as an old lifer who can't imagine life outside of the prison. Good work on all accounts.

final word: A triumph-of-the-human-spirit movie for those who don't like wimpy G-rated triumph-of-the-human-spirit movies.

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