The Shawshank Redemption

Fear can hold you prisoner, hope can set you free
Fear can hold you prisoner, hope can set you free
D: Frank Darabont
Columbia/Castle Rock (Niki Marvin)
US 1994
142 mins


W: Frank Darabont [based on the novella "Rita Hayworth & Shawshank Redemption" by Stephen King]
DP: Roger Deakins
Ed: Richard Francis-Bruce
Mus: Thomas Newman
PD: Terence Marsh
Cos: Elizabeth McBride

Tim Robbins (Andy Dufresne), Morgan Freeman (Ellis Boyd 'Red' Redding), Bob Gunton (Warden Norton), William Sadler (Heywood), Clancy Brown (Captain Hadley), Gil Bellows (Tommy), James Whitmore (Brooks Hatlen)

If a film could ever be described as "cinema heaven", The Shawshank Redemption would find that accolade fitting.
Faithfully adapted from Stephen King's short story, this prison drama charts the friendship of two men serving life sentences, one a banker, serving two back-to-back for the crime of killing his adulterous wife & her lover, which he claims he didn't commit.
The friendship between the two men acclimatises them to life in the brutal Shawshank prison, where the warden and guards are equally corrupt, using the banker's tax knowledge to defraud. 
The story has a wonderful gift of taking the audience through a variety of emotions before settling with a joyous fade out which is one of the only deviations from the book.         
The Shawshank Redemption has become a bit of a curiousity with its interesting life, failing to make any waves at the box office on its original release, but still being nominated for a Best Picture Oscar. It found its real audience on VHS and TV, and has since been voted the best film of all time by many sources, including IMDB, where it has held the #1 position for several years.
There might be some who find the bromance between the two main characters schmaltzy and unrealistic, but one can only summise that these are the people who simply don't believe in the true magic of the movies.

Tim Robbins & Morgan Freeman in The Shawshank Redemption
Tim Robbins & Morgan Freeman in The Shawshank Redemption