This review is for the Blu-ray. It's hard to say anything about this film that hasn't been said before. A gripping tale of humanity, hope and ultimately redemption in the most unlikely of circumstances. Well into my top dozen or so films- I must admit to being a sucker for happy endings! Suffice to say that if you haven't seen it then you need to. Morgan Freeman was absolutely amazing, in both his acting and his voiceover.
The Bluray comes packaged in a narrow bluray case, which doesn't bother me. In fact I could maybe be doing with more of them to save shelf space. For the record my one was sealed. Picture Quality was extremely good and certainly added to my enjoyment of the film. There was a little grain, but the picture was very clean, and if anything the grain added to the realism in many of the prison scenes. Colours were very good, with a lot of blues and dark scenes that worked very well. Watch out for a scene towards the end with Andy standing in the rain. HD definitely brought something new to what was already a great film,and definitely added to my enjoyment of it. Ratio is 1.78:1 so it fills the screen on a widescreen TV, without stretching the picture.
Sound is much more limited, in the UK version, with Dolby digital 5.1 being the top offering. I understand the US version has a True HD soundtrack, so if that is important to you then you might consider looking for an import on Amazon.
All-in-all it was a great viewing experience though, that held my family spellbound for its whole length of over two hours. Definitely 5 stars in my book.