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Universal acclaim- based on 804 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 28 out of 804

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  1. Nov 24, 2014
    It's cliche, and many say it, but this movie is truly a masterpiece. Beautiful set pieces, acting and storytelling, especially by Morgan Freeman and Tim Robbins. Both of which play their finest role. It captures everything that makes us human and draws it over a three-hour feature length film. There aren't many movies in this world, I enjoy watching a second time, let alone 12-15 more times. This being one of them. I would strongly recommend this to any film buff, and let it be known that this is most likely my favourite movie of all time. Expand
  2. Nov 22, 2014
    The Shawshank Redemption is the BEST Stephen King adaptation. Frank Darabont made a movie most people couldn't pull off since it's based on a short story by Stephen King. Rob Reiner did too, but Stand by Me just wasn't as good as The Shawshank Redemption.
  3. Oct 24, 2014
    The only true masterpiece that can be called a masterpiece. The film which upon its release only made 1 million dollars on its production budget of 25 million USD. The film has now gone to be the number one film on IMDB with over a million ratings. This 1994 film based on the Stephen King novel in the 1980s, was adapted by Frank Darabont who wrote the screenplay and directed the film got three producers and an ensemble of actors from Morgan freeman who plays Red and Tim Robbins who played Andy Dufrense. The film is based in the 1940s and our main character Andy Dufrense has been wrongly accused of the murder of his wife who was having an affair. While in prison he meets up with Red who helps him along. Andys main mission is to escape the shawshank prison. This is my personal favourite film of all time because this film is about hope an courage and no matter how much you get put down you can get back up. The cinematography by Roger Deakins was superb and they diva score by Thomas Newman is some of the finest work in motion picture history. The acting by our two main leads is deserve of the Oscar they didn't get. A quick mention to James Whitmore who played the librarian in the film and did a superb little role in the film. My favourite film of all time and I don't think it will change any time soon, this film gets 100/100 for me. Expand
  4. Aug 21, 2014
    I have very little to say about this movie that has not been said to death. An unwaveringly inspirational story of perseverance in the face of hardship, this movie will teach you how to hope again. Not only does the story never fail to move me, but the acting performances were terrific as well, as Tim Robbins shows us a man who has everything, only to lose it, and Morgan Freeman turns from a callous murderer to a deeper thinking more mature and repentant man. Expand
  5. Aug 18, 2014
    The best prison film I've seen since 'Escape From Alcatraz'. A gripping story, exceptional acting and a brilliant set to film on puts the cherry on top of the cake.
  6. Aug 15, 2014
    A brilliant story about friendship, hope and redemption. Brings together two talented actors Morgan Freeman and Tim Robbin who create a beautiful movie that is simply a must see.
  7. Jul 24, 2014
    The Shawshank Redemption..................................................
    Only one word that is PERFECT.................................................
  8. Jul 22, 2014
    The best film ever made, hands down, the acting is excellent throughout the whole film, every member of the cast gives a outstanding performance and the story is also very strong. my favourite film of all time
  9. chw
    Jul 18, 2014
    The Shawshank Redemption is a very excellent film that is written and directed by Frank Darabont, the man behind The Green Mile and The Walking Dead, and based on a short story by Stephen King.
  10. Jul 9, 2014
    With themes of hope, life, and especially of death, 'Shawshank' is a masterful drama about life in prison and one man's hope that drives him to achieve what he wants; freedom. The performances are both realistic and emotional, with Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman both delivering us their greatest on screen. The script is engaging and fits the tone of the movie, which makes the two hours run by so quick you'll have wished you'd seen more of it. Expand
  11. Jul 5, 2014
    A beautiful movie about friendship, hope and redemption. It's full of great acting, writing and a nice soundtrack, also nice direction by Frank Darabont. Beautiful Ending
  12. Jun 29, 2014
    A true masterpiece. A film that you can watch many times and never gets old. Suspenseful, touching and sometimes even funny. Also great acting, cinematography and music.
  13. May 30, 2014
    In one word, a masterpieceHave come at the wrong time.Nevertheless, still an unforgettable movie.
    The story will take in.Great movie with fantastic performances by Morgan Freeman and Tim Robbins..
  14. Apr 23, 2014
    I can understand why it is one of the highest praised movies of all time because it is one of the best movies of all time. Great cast with amazing chemistry throughout the whole movie. Really well acted and a fantastic storyline keeps you into this movie the whole time you watch it. It is one of those feel good stories that you have to like even if you don't like these types of movies. And this movie has one of the best endings in cinema history so this is a definite must watch. Expand
  15. Mar 26, 2014
    The Shawshank Redemption is a powerful film on every level, but seriously overrated. The film was good, but not perfect (Certainly not enough for a 9.3) It was very, very good in fact amazing, but just really overrated. Don't let it stop you from watching the film!---you will find none like it.
  16. Mar 25, 2014
    it is a movie about life ,hope ,friendship, freedom ,,,,its touch my heart and soul ....this is my one of favorite movie of all time ....and one of great movie of all time...HOPE.....HOPE....morgan freeman of my favorite actor...
  17. Mar 23, 2014
    I used to say fight club was my favorite movie but now I say shawshank is my favorite movie. I love a movie about hope. Not many movies can pull hope off like this one. if you are going through a hard time you should watch this movie I say this is my favorite movie. I give this movie a 10 out of 10. Thanks for reading.
  18. Mar 2, 2014
    The Shawshank Redemption is on top of IMDb, so I think everything about it has already been said.
    I have just one thing to add: The brutal scenes aren't a bad thing and demonstrate the terrible place, where Andy and Red have to spend theirs lifes.
  19. Mar 1, 2014
    Wonderful, amazing, glorious, are three words to describe this masterpiece. The acting was good, and the plot better. This film shows us the strength of the human spirit, true friendship and especially what we all crave, desire and trust dnifíciles situations, hope.
  20. Feb 23, 2014
    Ive always been an action packaged movie watcher, or always watch those movie with mind blowing plot twist, Se7en, Inception, Akira, Seven Samurai, etc. but the first time my mom told me about this movie, i watched at 10 years old, i wasn't prepared to see a movie that good, now im 22 i looked for the name of this movie for decades, i never knew the name of the movie was THE SHAWNSHANK REDEMPTION, the movie my mom always rated at the best of all times, and guess what, is my favorite too and is by far the best movie ever Expand
  21. Jan 19, 2014
    It may be one of the best movies ever made.really fine acting from morgan freeman and tim robbins . entire cast have done a good job.frank made a successful experiment.
  22. Jan 8, 2014
    Shawshank Redemption is a movie in which you see the great performances of Tim and Morgan.The struggle of hope over despair. One of the best movies of all time or the best movie. It was a great escape for redemption.
  23. Dec 31, 2013
    Needless to say an all time great. One of the few movies you can watch over and over. The acting in incredible, the story is captivating and engaging, and every actor comes through in a big way. A truly wonderful movie. If you have not seen it, you will not be disappointed when you do.
  24. Dec 25, 2013
    This movie is one of the best movies ever made, hands down. The acting is incredible, the script is solid, and a great plot. It shows the life of two inmates who bond together in jail over the course of a few decades or whatever. It has all the drama in it that would destroy any who tried to compete against it. Honestly, this film will never be seen as worse.
  25. Dec 8, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The way things happen in movie and how they are directed and captured are awesome.An example for every moviemaker. only "MOVIE" I have seen,I must say!!!!! Expand
  26. Dec 6, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The Shawshank Redemption is easily one of my all time favorite movies,
    other than the fact that it's written by stephen king, it's also one of his best works.
    tim robins and morgan freeman were born to play these characters, and the story is not just about the life in prison but it's also about friendship and loyalty and you get so attached to these characters that it's leave an impact on you after the movie ends.
    also the escape scene is one of the best scenes in cinema history.
  27. Dec 5, 2013
    The story of friendship, redemption and hope, what can I say about this great masterpiece, The Best Movie of all time that teach you lots of the meanings of life, tells you to never fear anything and never lose hope, because hope always set you free...
  28. Dec 3, 2013
    I made my mind to watch this movie in 2012 as most of users recommended on IMDb. I always wonder what could be one thing that makes Shawshank legend of Hollywood movies. Well, I gotta say I found my favorite actor of lifetime after watching it: Morgan Freeman. Every single thing in the movie is 10/10. Story of Stephen King, screenplay, dialogs, drama, suspense, crime and action. I compare Morgan to Amitabh Bachchan of Hollywood. The brief voice of Freeman moves me whenever I heard him. I never gets tired watching it again and again, its that kind of out of this world picture. I still sit back in ave and can't help myself from watching it again and again. Thanks to strong direction and support staff, this makes to top my list all-time. Expand
  29. Nov 12, 2013

    Casting was spotty, with Tim Robbins a great choice for the lead character, Dufresne. Robbins maintains viewer interest anytime he is the focus of attention, unfortunately a lot of the screen time is devoted to the narrator, “Red,” (Morgan Freeman) who drops pearls of cracker barrel wisdom a la Waylon
    Jennings’ narration of The Dukes of Hazzard. Morgan Freeman, while a decent enough actor in no way can stimulate my interest for very long with his bland, long-winded, homespun observations on the Dufresne character and prison life in general. I feel that Freeman’s performance was not strong enough to carry the amount of screen time assigned by the director. Bob Gunton, as Warden Norton the bible thumping hypocrite who runs Shawshank is a great asset to the film with his sly characterization of the unlikable tyrant. One of the best supporting roles I’ve seen lately was essayed by James Whitmore, as Brooks, the librarian at Shawshank. Brooks had a pet crow, much like the animal character Mr. Jingles Darabont used in The Green Mile. Brooks was released from Shawshank after about a half-century. Unfortunately, he was unable to adapt to life on the outside. Expand
  30. Nov 8, 2013
    Such a strong narrative. All the ingredients of what makes a good drama in the right proportions. The goodness inside people in the most Godforsaken places, and the moral corruption some of us could suffer from if given power over condemned people.

    You have to make your own mind about Andy, whether he is innocent or not. He believes so, but all evidence points to the contrary. Robbins
    plays him in a subtle, laid-back manner. He's hard to figure out. Then there is Red, played by the masterful Freeman, who is in for the long haul and doesn't know if he is ever going to breathe free air again. These two characters make the heart and soul of the movie.

    There may be a message here. Without being overt, we sense as the years of these men's lives are wasted before our eyes, especially Andy since you can't really figure out if he is guilty or not. But the ways he finds to engage himself, do something good.

    There is plenty of humour and the drama never exceeds the limit where it might become painful. The action is sparse and is shown in an expository fashion. The tone is objective. And Freeman's voice guides you through every scene. The camera angles used, and the overall cinematography was genius. It was like being guided though a maze by an expert in the field. The dialogue was crisp and refreshing. The score quiet and unobtrusive. The world created, or in this case just the prison, seemed so real and complete. You could feel the inmates' emotions related to the place.

    All this may give the impression that it may be hard to sit through it, but quite surprisingly, like all great movies, despite the deep, absorbing discussions about life, the movie speeds through from scene to scene without effort. I had the feeling I have when I'm reading an especially engrossing novel I cannot put down. I guess this is what happens when the work of great directors, screenwriters and cinematographers fuses to deliver a product that exceeds anything that a single department could achieve at its best. This one did not just have effort put into it but also soul.

Generally favorable reviews - based on 19 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 19
  2. Negative: 0 out of 19
  1. 90
    It's the no-bull performances that hold back the flood of banalities. Robbins and Freeman connect with the bruised souls of Andy and Red to create something undeniably powerful and moving.
  2. Gripping...compelling.
  3. Some of "The Shawshank Redemption'' comes across as outrageously improbable. Yet the film keeps pulling you back with its sense of striving humanity slowly turning the tables against evil.