Saturday, December 12, 2009
My Top Ten Films Adapted From Novels #4: Shawshank Redemption, Stephen King
Being sent to prison is sort of like being branded with the Scarlett Letter. You couldn't really handle life, so you're sent away to a prison usually located in a remote area of a state, to stew about your crime and wonder what might have been with your life. But being sent away for a crime you didn't commit can tear a man's soul and resolve apart. In the case of Andy Dufresne, played by Tim Robbins, it's about being hopeful. It's about not feeling sorry for yourself. It's about going at it alone when no one believes in you. Adapted and directed by Frank Darabont, Shawshank Redemption tells the story of two imprisoned men who bond over a number of years in prison. The story is spoken by a narrator in the form of one its characters Ellis Boyd "Red' Redding played by the incomparable Morgan Freeman. It adds grace. It adds pain. It adds nuisance. This is a different story from King's usual work which makes it so compelling. It's infused with likable characters, others reprehensible, all layered with contradictions. The last thirty to forty minutes of the film are as dramatic as anything you'll see in motion pictures. If the last scene doesn't bring a tear to your eye, you're dead inside. It's hollow. Get a check up.