User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 674 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 26 out of 674

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  1. 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...
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. 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
  6. 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.
  7. 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.
  8. 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.
  9. 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.
  10. 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
  11. Dec 6, 2013
    This review contains spoilers. 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.
  12. 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...
  13. 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
  14. 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
  15. 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.
  16. Oct 24, 2013
    I never gave myself the time to watch this masterpiece before. It definitely lives up to the hype and praise it got after its release. It deserves a 10 but isn't even the best movie of '94 (see: Pulp Fiction, but it tells a great story. Isn't that what movies are all about?
  17. Oct 11, 2013
    This movie is one of the best movies of all time. Amazing acting by Morgan Freeman and Tim Robbins, not to mention the story was written by Stephen King. It's sad that this movie didn't get any of the oscars it deserved. The Shawshank Redemption won no oscars because 1994 was the year of Forrest Gump, and Pulp Fiction. Although those two movies were good in its time. The Shawshank Redemption will always be one of the bets movies of all time. Expand
  18. Sep 15, 2013
    I'm not going to go through a whole review, since there are plenty of reviews detailing why this is the greatest movie of all time. I'm just gonna give a quote: "The Shawshank Redemption is the best movie I have ever seen because of its ability to capture raw emotion." I'm also going to elaborate on the three biggest reasons people dislike this movie. 1. It's too slow. The Shawshank Redemption may be a tad slow, but it is justified. I believe director Frank Darabont wanted to show Andy's time at Shawshank by showing how slow prison time really is. Some movies are just slow; this movie does it for a deeper reason, adding to Shawshank's genius.

    2. Andy Dufresne barely shows emotion.

    Those people obviously didn't get what kind of character Andy was. Tim Robbins did this on purpose. Andy was quiet, mellow, and was obviously quite shocked and angry he was going to prison for a crime he didn't do. Did you really expect the man to jump up and start singing "Kumbaya"? No! So I don't get what the problem is. The fact that he acted like this just added to the realistic atmosphere of the movie.

    3. This is not realistic.

    Oh yes your right, since these men in prison smoked, cursed, drank, and kept their eyes peeled in the shower room for potential rapists. That is not realistic at all. (sarcastic) Overall, I think some of the hate on Shawshank is solely because it is the highest rated movie on IMDb, for a fact. (User rating is 9.3 to this date). I think some people hate this movie because everyone else loves it, and that is a bad way to think about anything, not just movies.

    I would rate it higher if I could.
  19. Aug 31, 2013
    WOW!!! It's without any doubt, one of Darabont's best pictures!!! Morgan Freeman and Tim Robbins are brilliant in this film. The only problem is that it didn't win an Oscar. It's nominated for 7. In my opinion, it could have won seven Oscars and more!
  20. Aug 11, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Awesome film. The acting is outstanding, the directing is outstanding, and the plot is compelling and interesting. Only small knock is that the escape felt like a partial copy from the film "Escape From Alcatraz" in the way he tunneled through the wall and wound up surrounded by piping. Nothing worth griping over though, definitely worthy of tons of praise. Expand
  21. Aug 1, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The Shawshank Redemption is a story about a man who goes to jail after they accuse him for killing his wife and her lover. At first when he went to that prison he had problems and they raped him all the time after a while he made probably the best friendship he ever had in that prison. It is an interesting tale about friendship despite the differences of each people my opinion as I think the 'white people' used to have problems with the 'black people'. It will amuse the audience and it will touch you. It is interesting and it keeps you. Morgan freeman as usually he is the narrator. Tim Robbins gave a great performance and in overall The Shawshank Redemption it is a must-watch and probably one of the best of its kind. Expand
  22. Jul 16, 2013
    A truly sensational movie. Not only is there deep and meaningful messages but the story and film itself is incredible. Definitely one of if not the best films of all time
  23. Jul 6, 2013
    The shawshank redemption is a classic drama which revolves around an innocent man who is imprisoned in a dirty prison. The plot is well developed and character are well played out. The theme is clearly displayed and the director has made very good scenes with symbolic cuts.
  24. Jul 3, 2013
    Few movies can make such an emotional impact on a viewer as this one does. The acting is brilliant and both Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman fit perfectly in their roles. Overall, this is one movie you shouldn't miss!
  25. Jul 1, 2013
    Perfection. The benchmark of all dramas, this is as good as cinema gets. Everyone should watch it, if you don't find this film moving you basically have no feelings.
  26. Jun 12, 2013
    This film is one of my top 3 or 5 films of all-time. I love everything about it, such as the casting, the performances, the storyline, the directing, etc. If you haven't seen this, you are really missing out.
  27. Jun 12, 2013
    Has to be the best prison movie ever. Yes, it's even better than the Green Mile. I've been putting off watching this movie forever, thinking it was going to be boring and sappy. But it's far from it. This movie wraps you up in its story and it always feels very real due to superb filmmaking. The acting couldn't get any better, and in the end this is one of the most uplifting movies ever made. Yes it's very long, but it without a doubt justifies its length. Expand
  28. May 30, 2013
    Absolutely brilliant. One of the best movies I have ever seen. Morgan Freeman and Tim Robbins were both brilliant in their roles, showing the true meaning of friendship.
  29. May 24, 2013
    Based on a short, non-horror, novel by Stephen King The Shawshank Redemption tells the story of Andy Dufresne, a young banker sentenced to life imprisonment for apparently murdering his wife and her lover.

    Shawshank Prison is a depressing place where brutality from guards and other prisoners is commonplace. With help from friend Red (the brilliant Morgan Freeman) he is able to gradually
    win both prisoners and guards over to his side. Above all this movie is a story of hope but the brilliant central relationship between Andy and Red lifts it well above virtually any other film. Add that to top notch production values and a fantastically satisfying ending and you have one of the best movies in cinema history. Expand
  30. Apr 30, 2013
    One of the best movies ever. Period Great movie and story definetly check watching..........................................................................

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.