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82 of 84 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous
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...
Published on 6 Mar 2010 by Mr. James West

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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars same old....
thank goodness I rented this blueray, the transfer is no different to the dvd I already own. save your pennies and give this blueray a miss.
Published on 8 Oct 2011 by smcil1


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82 of 84 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous, 6 Mar 2010
By 
Mr. James West "Nebulous" (Aberdeen, Scotland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Shawshank Redemption [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
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.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I was., 14 Dec 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Shawshank Redemption. (DVD)
You can deconstruct every movie whatever way you please, give it whatever meaning you want and somebody somewhere will agree.
Ultimately however, regardless of whoever see's in a movie whatever it is they see, it's about how you feel just after the movie, the moment's before emotion subsides and reality returns.
In The Shawshank Redemption all I saw was a nice little film about a man trying to remain human in an inhuman place, and about a man trying to remember what it was like to be human, anywhere.
And I felt good after watching it for quite some time.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A truly excellent film, 24 Nov 2001
By A Customer
The Shawshank Redemption is simply one of the best films ever made.It has everything-good plot,superb acting,perfect casting and a great ending.The film is never dull and keeps you riveted throughout-Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman are superb!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely fantastic!!!, 20 Jun 2001
By A Customer
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This movie is one of the best I have ever seen. It has absolutely everything that a prison movie has and so much more. Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman act their roles brilliantly and no one else could have done any better. This is a must see, time and again movie. It will become one of your all time faves!!!!
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the most upliftinf films you will ever see., 18 Sep 2001
By A Customer
Frank Darabonts suberb prison drama adapted from a Stephen King story gets everything right. The story will keep you hooked right from the start with great moments of tension and a great twist at the end. Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman both give their best preformances ever. I defy anyone not to feel good after this film.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Remember....hope is a good thing., 1 May 2005
In 1999, Channel 4 compiled the Top 100 movies of the last century, as voted by the British movie-going public. I'm sure a few eyebrows were raised when The Shawshank Redemption was a surprise entry at number 4. A decade on from its' release, it has grown in justification of its place amongst the likes of The Godfather, Gone With The Wind, Casablanca to name but a few. Director Frank Darabont's screen adaptation of Stephen King's novel, however, did not set the box-office alight, like those films mentioned, upon its' release in 1994. But it's also interesting to note that on its' 10th anniversary, critics and the public voted it the best film never to win an Academy Award. It just goes to show that however many accolades are bestowed upon a film, that doesn't make it what it is. Shawshank is a powerfully moving story that touches every human emotion, from tragedy, despair, fear to humour, friendship and perhaps the most prominent message of the film - hope.
When Banker Andy Dufresne is sent to Shawshank penitentiary, on a double life-sentence, for the brutal murder of his estranged wife and her lover, his own life could be deemed to be over. The first few years of his sentence are the toughest, but forming a friendship with Red, 'the man who knows how to get things on the inside', plus financially advising the prison warden and the guards on accumulating illegal funds, his life becomes bearable at the most.
I won't praise the film anymore than other reviewers have already done, but if anyone were to reward Shawshank anything less than 5-stars, then they haven't watched the film carefully. The DVD comes with a range of special features, most notably the interviews with cast and crew, which is a bonus. Thomas Newman's musical score only adds to the emotion of the film, in parts it is deeply touching. The ending, as many would agree, is nothing less than uplifting.
Supported by a fine cast of character actors, Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman exchange some excellent dialogue between themselves, both giving what maybe the performances of their careers. How Freeman was never awarded the Best Actor Oscar in 1995 is astounding, but since then both Robbins and himself, thankfully, have not gone overlooked by the Academy.
It is a film that deserves a classic status, and offers an important message to anyone who maybe in their darkest of hours, when there is nowhere to turn - that their is light at the end of the tunnel. Life without The Shawshank Redemption, would be meaningless.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars SUPERBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBB, 13 May 2008
By 
T. Martin "Cheops" (Burton-on-trent, UK) - See all my reviews
One of the bestest films I have ever seen!!!

Superb movie, superb story, ultimate acting... I even liked the villain in this movie!... hats off to the lovely people who created it... its a shame it didn't win the deserved oscar....

Must see atleast ten times in life!!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hope in Prison with Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman, 12 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
12/24 of Tim Bradley's Amazon Advent Calendar 2014.

This review is for Sarah Sutton (Nyssa in `Doctor Who') who claims this is her favourite live-action film.

"Happy Birthday Sarah!"

`The Shawshank Redemption' is a film recommended to me by who I dedicate this review to. I didn't know about the film and was unaware of its existence. I was told this was a prison film starring Morgan Freeman and Tim Robbins. I decided to purchase it once hearing about it, hoping to see it sometime at home. I've now seen the film twice first in September and recently for this review, and I agree it's one of the best films ever made in the 1990s and is highly recommended.

N.B. This is a 15-rated film, as it's suitable for persons of 15 years and over containing adult themes; a few sex references; brutal violence and strong language.

I really enjoyed this film and glad I've been able to see it. I must admit though it took me a while to get round to watching as I was reluctant at first. This was because I was reluctant of the subject matter as it depicts the harsh realities of prison life. It is pretty brutal in certain areas of the story, especially at the beginning when Andy Dufresne gets locked away into prison. But after discussing with friends at work and home about the film, I eventually got round to watching it. I certainly enjoyed watching this film as I found it deeply moving and its messages of hope, freedom, salvation and the human spirit resonate throughout.

So what's the movie about then? `The story of `The Shawshank Redemption' is set in 1947 at the start. It's about a young man called Andy Dufresne (Tim Robbins) who is a banker. Andy is wrongly accused for a crime he claims he's innocent of - the murders of his wife and lover. Found guilty, Andy is sentenced for life and locked at maximum security Shawshank State Prison. During his time in prison, Andy has to overcome his fears and hardship in order to find a reason to live. He makes friends with Red (Morgan Freeman) one of the inmates at the prison as well as finding favour with the warden and prison guards and uses his banker skills at the prison to pursue a reason for living. But his growing acceptance of prison life hides a deeper and fierce determination to find a road to freedom. Andy spends 19 years of his life in prison. Will Andy remain inside Shawshank Prison forever, or will he find a way to escape?

`The Shawshank Redemption' is based on the short novella story by horror/sci-fi author Stephen King that was originally called 'Rita Haywood and the Shawshank Redemption'. I must admit I'm not an expert on Stephen King and his work, so this was the first time I'd properly seen anything that was an adaption based one of King's works. It opened my eyes to knowing about King and how he tells a story and how it's interpreted into film form by writer/director Frank Darabont.

As I watched this film, I had wondered where this film was going and how the story would resolve itself in depicting Andy Dufrsne's time in prison and how he would manage to escape. There were moments where I thought the film wasn't going anywhere and it was going to be depressing and heart-breaking all the way through and I wasn't going to get the satisfactory pay-off by the end of the film. But as I found out there was a clever plot twist towards the end and I did not expect how Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman's characters were going to escape. It was totally unexpected, but very well worth watching and it uplifted and moved me after seeing it first time.

I know how silly this sounds but after watching this film, I was struck by how Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman looked so young. I'd seen both these actors before in other films more in this century than in the 1990s, and it never occurred to me that they would look so young in this. Of course this film is one of their earlier works as actors and it was 1994 when it was made.

Tim Robbins is very good as Andy Dufresne, the accused banker for murdering his wife and lover. I've seen Tim Robbins before in 'War Of The Worlds' with Tom Cruise and 'Zathura' (one of my favourite sci-fi kid's films). I found it interesting to watch Tim in one of his earlier films and it's amazing to think how far he's come since then doing that film as he's become a very talented actor, screenwriter, director, producer, activist and musician over the years.

I like Tim's performance as Andy in the film. Andy is wrongly accused and goes through the hardship of his first two years in prison which are pretty terrible. You really feel for Andy in those moments when he's being bullied, depressed and finding it a struggle to fit in with prison life. He gets harassed and bullied by the `sisters' who are homosexuals and he doesn't want to know and he gets into fights with them. Andy however manages to form a real bond of friendship with Red and I really like how the friendship between these two guys grows and develops during the film. Andy also finds favour with the prison warden Norton and is able to use his banking skills to help the prison guards who he also makes friends with as well as the inmates within the prison. You really hope that this guy Andy will get out of prison and there are moments when it seems like despair overcomes hope. Yet Andy keeps onto that hope and find a reason to life. I like his line to Red when he says, "Get busy livin' or get busy dyin'."

Morgan Freeman is an actor who's very well-known nowadays. I've seen Morgan in the 'Bruce Almighty' and 'Evan Almighty' films and he has recently been in the Christopher Nolan/Christian Bale Batman films - 'The Dark Knight Trilogy' as well as providing a voice recently for 'The Lego Movie'. It's surprising to think that this is one of the earliest films in Morgan's career and it's probably one of his best as he was nominated an Academy Award for Best Actor in the film.

Morgan as Red is a character who has been in prison long before Andy's been in prison. Red is an African-American male character who narrates most of the story following after the events of `The Shawshank Redemption'. Red is like a `prison-spiv' as he get anything from cigarettes to chocolates to rock hammers to posters of actress Rita Haywood on somebody's prison cell wall. Unlike Andy, Red is convicted of murder that he committed during the 1920s. He gets the chance to speak for himself for his payroll, and is constantly rejected over a period of ten years he spends in prison. Red in a way is imprisoning himself as he doesn't see the `hope' that Andy sees saying that 'hope is a dangerous thing'. But during the film, Andy and Red form this really close friendship and it's really moving toward the end to see these two men bonding with each other in the face of hardship and despair and overcoming the fears they face whilst in prison. Morgan delivers a spell-binding performance as Red both in terms of character and as a narrator for the story.

The rest of the guest cast are equally good as Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman.

There's Bob Gunton playing Warden Samuel Norton who's in charge of Shawshank prison. He believes in two things - discipline and the Bible. He finds favour with Andy during the course of the film. I like the scene between them in Andy's cell when they're quoting verses from the Bible. There's a shocking twist to Norton's character, as his devout Christian manner is not all that it appears.

There's William Sadler playing Heywood. Heywood is an in-mate at Shawshank Prison and is one of Red's gang. Although seeming like a bully at first, he does come across as a likeable character later on in the film.

There's Clancy Brown playing Captain Byron Hadley, chief of the prison guards. Hadley is somebody you'd really want to hate as he's a sadistic and brutal captain of the guards as he likes to beat the in-mates up, treating them unfairly and keeping them in line. I'm sure Clancy Brown is a nice person in real life

There's James Whitmore playing Brooks, an old man and in-mate at the Shawshank Prison. Brooks has been in prison all his life and is the prison librarian when Andy eventually gets to work for him. He soon serves his time and is let out of prison and there's a really upsetting scene on how he copes with life outside of prison.

There's Gil Bellows playing Tommy Williams, a young man who gets convicted of a crime and is sent to Shawshank Prison in the 1950s when Andy and Red meet him. Tommy may know something about the truth of Andy's innocence and the murder crime he didn't commit.

And there's Mark Rolston as Bogs, the leader of `The Sisters' group who bullies and beats up Andy before he in turn gets beaten by Captain Hadley and is sent off to another prison for medical treatment.

The prison setting of `The Shawshank Redemption' is very gothic and atmospheric in the film. This is not the sitcom atmosphere of `Porridge' or the comedy atmosphere in Laurel and Hardy's film `Pardon Us'. This is definitely how real prison life is depicted. It's pretty bleak, unsettling and depressing when Andy first comes to Shawshank and you really feel for him when he's struggling to cope with adapting to prison life at the start. The location setting of `Shawshank' is very impressive as it was filmed at the Ohio State Reformatory in Mansfield, Ohio. The way the film's lit is very well done, especially during the night time scenes when the in-mates are locked away and we see Andy and Red in their own cells.

The special features on the DVD for `The Shawshank Redemption' are as follows. There's an in-depth making-of documentary called `The Redeeming Feature' and it features interviews with Tim Robbins, Morgan Freeman, director/writer Frank Darabont and various other members of the cast and crew. It also includes interviews with former in-mates on their own experiences of being in prison as well as members of the Church who provide their own Christian insight on how they see the film which I found really interesting. The documentary is hosted by Mark Kermode.

There are also some more cast interviews including Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman that were taken in 1993/4 to promote the film's release. There is also a theatrical trailer of `The Shawshank Redemption'.

I'm glad I've seen `The Shawshank Redemption' now and I'm very grateful to whom I dedicate this review to for recommending the film to me. I'm surprised this film didn't become a big success when it initially came out in cinemas following in the same line of films as `It's a Wonderful Life' that also became a film flop. `The Shawshank Redemption' is a deeply moving and effective film that is filled with messages of hope and striving to keep going in the face of despair. It's a pretty uplifting film about salvation in various forms and took me by surprise on how the film would be resolved. The plot's twist is very clever and how Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman's character got out of prison is pretty surprising but nevertheless rewarding. Highly recommend this film! You won't be disappointed!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Many Times better than Prison Break, 22 Nov 2007
One of the most popular modern TV series is Prison Break.Judging by the amount of positive reviews it has received, it can be considered as a critical success on the whole. Shawshank Redemption is many many times better.

The Shawshank Redemption has you hooked from the very first scene. Although Andy's innocence was obvious from the beginning, you just think how he's going to get out of it.

For me, the power and depth in this movie was it's ability to make prison life and friendships look better than that on the outside. Also when they were finally released they were so hesitant to live on the outside and wanted to go back in. I'm not sure why this affected me so much but i think it's just the fact that one mistake forced these people to live in a certain way where they don't want so much freedom and they're used to being workers with no rewards. They just couldn't adapt to the outside world. As if it were a different planet or something.

Although the men are supposed to be 'cold hearted killers', they seem so nice and are so easy to sympathize with. I know it sounds lame to feel sorry for a killer or thief but i think that the amazing story and acting, had me hoping that all of the prisoners were innocent... except for some obviously. Not to mention the guards were so mean and rude i just wished they would all get punished and tortured at the end of the movie.

If someone can feel that passionate and involved in a movie the first time they've seen it...i think it's a sign that if the person reading this still hasn't...they should. The Shawshank Redemption most definitely deserves its spot on the IMDb top #250.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Salvation lies within....., 2 Oct 2014
.....and Ironically, it most certainly does.

Bank Merchant Andy Defrene is convicted of the murder of his wife and her lover, and sentenced to life imprisonment at the titular prison.

Life seems to begin to fade, but fortunately Andy befriends some of the other inmates, in particular a character known only as Red.

Over time Andy finds ways to live out life with relative ease as one can expect in a prison, his body may be locked away in a cell, but his spirit can never be truly imprisoned.....

There is nothing to say about this film that hasn't been said before. Its awe-inspiring, its warm, and most of all, it gives you an enormous sense of well being once the credits roll.

From the opening shot of the prison, to the iconic Christ like pose in the rain, the film is chock full of religious allegory, and references the bible in several key scenes. But the film demands repeat viewings, because there is so much subliminal imagery and messages in the film.

The acting is brilliant, and the warmth between Andy and Red is the heart of the film, and the chemistry between Freeman and Robbins is second to none.

Its a perfectly crafted film, with effortless narrative, and it will make you smile and cry in equal measures.

Yes, it should have ended when Freeman got on the bus, but nothing is too perfect is it?
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The Shawshank Redemption [Blu-ray]
The Shawshank Redemption [Blu-ray] by Frank Darabont (Blu-ray - 2008)
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