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The Shawshank Redemption


This irrepressible, inscrutable movie is about bad people who are sort of really good people, and sort of good people who refuse to let really bad things become their way of life.

Red is a murderer. Red is the philosopher-king of Shawshank Prison. For my money, Red is the main character. He repents his crime, he does the time, he comes to understand Andy Dufresne’s untouchable devotion to regaining his rightful freedom, and Red finally, doggedly, walks the line of rock walls in hayfields in Buxton until he unearths the final proof of a friendship, and hope.

Andy remains a mysterious character. We know he’s innocent, cruelly and unjustly entombed and forgotten in hell, we know what he does in Shawshank, we admire his motivation, and yet we know the man only as Red knows him. Red is a passive observer, responsive to Andy’s intellect, but Red never really understands Andy’s private self.

The movie is based on Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption, a novel by Stephen King.

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