Generally favorable reviews - based on 36 Critics What's this?

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Universal acclaim- based on 222 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: Set on Death Row in a Southern prison in 1935, this is the remarkable story of a prison guard who develops a poignant, unusual relationship with one inmate who possesses a magical gift that is both mysterious and miraculous. (Castle Rock Entertainment)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 36
  2. Negative: 2 out of 36
  1. So moving, so memorable, so magically produced, it's going to delight millions of movie fans and sweep the Oscars.
  2. Reviewed by: Sean Means
    Darabont follows King's book fairly closely, allowing the audience to steep itself in the setting and characters slowly, like reading a good novel.
  3. Has a simple but exceptionally powerful and uplifting emotional lure.
  4. Surely a life sentence goes by quicker.
  5. A loud and ghastly movie to sit through and not short on gratuitous hideousness, but Darabont has also done his best to baste it with humanity and sweetness.
  6. Three hours of overstatement and schmaltz.
  7. Reviewed by: David Ansen
    A lumbering, self-important three-hour melodrama that defies credibility at every turn.

See all 36 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 56 out of 59
  2. Negative: 2 out of 59
  1. Nov 26, 2011
    It makes me angry to see many low scores from critics, this is probably one of the best and most emotional movies I have ever watched.
  2. Jan 5, 2014
    This movieā€¦.I can't explain it in words but, this is the best sob movie in time. I'm not going to say its "one of the best" or "probably the best" because I know. This movie is the best. Why? When I was young, about the time you can't walk, I somehow opened the tv and saw this. I only saw a scene of it but, it was so, how to say this, close? I think. Whatever, I couldn't get that movie out of my mind then a 9ish years later, I found the name. I saw the whole movie and now, I feel accomplished. A part of the scene in this movie is so moving that I searched and searched when it was possible to search. I came from a poor family once so I didn't have the internet or a phone or a computer, just a tv. So now, since I have a laptop, I want to say this to the world. This movie changed my life. Expand
  3. Aug 11, 2013
    Energetic, deep, and sad. I've never burst into tears watching any movies. It makes me upset to see bad mediocre reviews from critics. I loved this movie. It was worth the 3-hour sit through. Expand
  4. Aug 23, 2010
    Man in retirement home sees Fred Astaire in a film, has flashbacks back to 1935 when he was a prison warden.
    Fantastic film with great acting
    & a good adaptation of the Stephen King novel.
    Sam Rockwell is amazing as the very unhinged Billy the Kid & despite it's three hour length doesn't seem as long.
    Tom Hanks does tend to play himself & I still think Bachelor Party is his best film but with this & Catch Me If You Can being not far behind.
  5. May 24, 2013
    As with the fantastic Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile is based on a Stephen King story and directed by Frank Darabont and I can give no higher praise than to say it is just as good.

    The film centres on a stretch of death row known as The Green Mile in which a giant of a man known as John Coffey, accused of murdering two young girls, has been imprisoned. King is widely known for his horror books but, while there are supernatural elements to this story, as with The Shawshank Redemption this film is all about relationships between people in difficult circumstances.

    The Green Mile may be three hours long but every minute of that is used to develop the characters and story so that by the end we really do care what happens to them. Those that dismiss Kings work as chart filler may be pleasantly surprised by what they find in this movie.
  6. Jun 4, 2013
    this movie is a masterpiece from the start to finish.
    watching this movie nowadays makes you reminisce to the old movie style.
    the good
    story the fantastic performances the over top characters the fact that every scene of the movie is valuable in the overall story.
    i miss how movies used to be with Tom Hanks awesome performance and the fact that the movie is solid yet simple and joyful it's basically a 3 hours that send you away to what movies actually should be.
  7. Dec 30, 2013
    This film is Pander. Period.
    Basically, it starts and ends without questioning death penalty. Death penalty is barbaric for MY culture, and
    the behavior of the characters never seems realistic to me. The horrible system behind death row is depicted in a mitigate, sweetened way. There's no room for compassion in death penalty as shown in the film, and this film is basically offensive solely for the way the characters are behaving.
    Second: nothing is believable. Clearly is a fantasy drama, but still as the stereotyped characters (bad people are bad without a reason, they are simply mad. Good people are in fact not really good, but seam dumb and ataraxic, resulting in unlovable characters). The main character is basically a scary black giant who cries all the time. Very easy way to provoke reactions in the viewer is to show him something which he's unconsciously scared off while enforcing this unconscious fear with clever direction. Incidentally this unconscious fear is based on a black stupid strong man stereotype overlapped by the boogeyman figure. I'm a caucasian european man and i find this VERY offensive.
    The whole story, in the end, is based on emotional tricks. (the *spoiler* bad death scene is traumatic and unnecessary, at least as it is shown). Giving strong emotions to people based on meaningless story or characters is a cheat.
    This film is bad. I couldn't expect this since the reviews are so high. But i found this film ruffian, manipulative and ultimately ugly.

See all 59 User Reviews

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