You are on page 1of 12

ShawShank Redemption Movie Analysis


The Shawshank is based on the story of a banker Andy Dufresne who is being wrongly convicted and
punished with a double life sentence for the murder of his wife and her lover. He was assigned in Maine's
Shawshank prison facility where his distant and superior manner prevents good relations with the guards and
his fellow convicts. He was hard to befriend at first because he has that kind of aura where people would think
that he has an attitude. However, Andy gradually develops a friendship with his fellow prisoner, Ellis “Red”
Redding. He also gets on the better side of Shawshank's warden by doing some financial consulting. With his
superior math and business skills Andy becomes a consultant, teacher, and accountant for inmates and
guards. As a smart man, he is constantly working towards his ultimate goal of getting out of prison one way or
another. Despite his imprisonment, Andy had a plan not only to succeed in life but also to help those who
befriended him while imprisoned and more directly to persecute those who tormented him in Shawshank
prison. His methods win him many friends and admirers in prison, but it is the friendship of "Red" that he
values most.

During his stay in Shawshank, he also met Brooks, their librarian and also an old convict. Brooks, has
been paroled after a half of a century of imprisonment and loses control. In the midst of his rage, he threatens
to kill another inmate in order to stay at Shawshank. When Brooks was released from the prison, he went to
the city to find an apartment where he will stay while working at a grocery store. Brooks felt like his life outside
the prison is already useless because he spent most of his life inside. One day in his apartment, Brooks
decided to end his life by hanging himself. When Brooks died, Andy took over the library job. There was not
much to the library, so Andy asked the warden if it would be all right if he started sending letter a week to the
Senate to get funds, and the warden agreed. He sent a letter a week until, finally, six years later he got a
response. He went down to the warden's office and he saw stacks of old books, magazines, and records sent
from libraries that did not use them anymore and also a check in the amount of two hundred dollars to go
toward the building of a new library.

Andy was overjoyed with all of these things and begins to look through all the different records. He finds
a record that he likes and gets the nerve to play it on the record player. The music is an opera style piece and
once the music begins you can see and feel the joy it brings to Andy. An officer from the restroom asks Andy if
he could also hear that but Andy just ignores him and uses the key to lock the restroom and then proceeds to
lock the warden's office so he would not disappear. So as the music continues, Andy decides that he should
not be the only one to enjoy the music but to allow everyone to hear it. He then goes over to the switchboard
and turns it on for all to hear. He tried to get Andy to turn the music off and go unlock the door but Andy just sat

but instead the reaction of the warden named Norton is completely contrary to what he hoped for. Hadley is arrested for murder. the rock punches through into the wall.there with his hand behind his heads and had his feet prop up on the disk just smiling. A young prisoner named Tommy comes to Shawshank. but he remembered the promise he had made to Andy. he finds the Bible he had given Andy. At Red's next parole hearing . the police storms Shawshank Prison. which he hadn't touched since Andy escaped. Andy felt devastated upon hearing Tommy’s death. Andy. The warden later meets with Tommy alone and asks him if he'll testify on Andy's behalf. One day. leading Red and his buddies to suspect he will commit suicide. Norton becomes alarmed when he found Andy's shoes in his shoebox instead of his own. he followed Andy's instructions and saw a small box containing a large sum of cash and instructions to find him. The following morning. The warden becomes furious and orders him to solitary for a month. Andy was expecting that the warden would help him. Norton asks Andy to shine his shoes for him and put his suit in for dry-cleaning before leaving for the night. Tommy was not just an ordinary prisoner because he knows the true killer of Andy’s wife and her lover. Norton starts throwing Andy's sculpted rocks around the cell. Andy was missing in his cell and at the same time. Red said he was taken away "crying like a little girl". He goes to work at a grocery store. meets with the warden's. Norton tears the poster away from the wall and finds a tunnel just wide enough for a man to crawl through. . Andy asks for a length of rope. his only hope to get out of Shawshank. At the end of the day. Warden Norton finally opens the safe. he will never say a word about the illegal activities that they are doing inside. where he crosses into Mexico. Andy suggests that Tommy take up another line of work besides theft. this time. and stays at the same house room Brooks had stayed in. Andy promised the warden that if he ever get out of prison. expecting he could help him get another trial with Tommy as a witness. So the warden made Andy spend time "in the hole" or solitary confinement for two weeks. When he throws one at Andy's poster. takes out a gun and shoots himself under the chin. Not long after. At times he would contemplate trying to get back into prison. Norton walks back to his desk as the police pound on his door. the two friends are finally reunited. his parole was granted. and instead of his books. Tommy enthusiastically agrees and the warden has him shot dead by Hadley. With this new information. Red missed his friend’s company. On the beach of Zihuatanejo. full of hope. Red leaves the apartment house and takes a bus to Fort Hancock.

being accused of something that he did not commit. Lastly. you often help and feel better about yourself. There is this one line from Andy that got stuck in my mind and that is “get busy living or get busy dying”. . Corruption. They deserve to be punished after all the cruelty they did to the prisoners. only Andy knows that he didn’t commit the crime. He was accused of killing his wife and her lover however. He is such a smart and composed man. murder and brutality is rampant inside the prison. trust and respect in return. Persistence and perseverance is the key. It took Andy almost 20 years to escape. Justice system is sometimes unfair. prison guards. He helped many people. sexually harassed and lastly. warden. the warden and the excessively abusive prison guard fall from their positions of power. Inevitably. I don’t think I can ever think of a way or strategy to escape the prison. We always complain to things that are just simple and yet we did not think about other people’s hardships that are worse than ours. So we should thank God about the life that he gave us. the film was able to convey the brutality of the life in prison. you are treated very well but if you have nothing. what I learned from the movie is that nothing can truly replace a good friend who will be with you through thick and thin. The experience of Andy gave insights as to what is happening inside the Shawshank prison. That’s the first thing that comes to my mind after watching Shawshank Redemption. What comes around goes around. work hard and quit complaining. Justice has been served for those prisoners who were killed in Shawshank. Sometimes the simplest solutions are the best because covering the tunnel hole with posters prevented his escape from being uncovered. From the point of view of one of the prisoners.Insights: “Life is not fair”. you are treated badly. He earned friendship. there is a way”. I guess we cannot blame them because we are just human who commit mistakes but I really hope that their conscience will always prevail. If you have the wealth. I admire his patience and bravery because he never complained about the abuse he took and in doing so demonstrated an unusual strength of character. “Where there is a will. I cannot imagine my life like Andy who was beaten. he finally escaped prison. That’s what exactly happened to Andy Dufresne because after so many years of being convicted. Red. Who would choose to get busy dying? Of course no one would like that. protection. prison mates with no expected trade. If I were in his position. Writing one letter a week for six years got him funding for the prison library. In helping others.

Then we see hope translated into action in a surprising way. I would add that the audience is not immediately told that Andy Dufresne is a good man. the Shawshank Redemption is about hope. Shawshank for me represents a truly classic film for some reasons. and he is able to find ways to share hope with his friends. Second is the time frame of the story. Man. Rather. In the end there are only 3 major plot themes. First is that the story’s setting has an unwelcomed nature of the prison which further focuses our attention on the characters and story line. . Shawshank effectively uses all 3 (at various stages) to pile a convincing story that is both timeless and classic. Man vs. Hope is the saving quality for Andy. Himself and Man vs. the audience gets to observe him over a period of many years and draw their own conclusions. Nature. Man vs. To that. It was stated in the movie how long Andy and the others have stayed in the prison.Critic: To me.

his inmates realized that the police commissioner’s daughter died in accident. while counting his salary. the little girl went up to him and informed that there is another store who sells the same bag as her. but the hot air-balloon’s rope got hanged to the jail’s barbed-wire fence. though he encountered maltreatment from the hands of his cellmates and Chief Jang. Chief Jang discovered there’s a little girl inside Cell No. Therefore. Yong Gu still saved him from a burning room. Yong-Gu lies that he killed the police commissioner’s daughter. Yong-gu is the one who watch and tries to help her. How? Yong Gu saved one of his cellmates So Yang-Ho from an attack of a rival. Yong Gu earned their trust and friendship. which is . The prisoners were saddened because they weren’t able to escape. to guarantee the safety of his daughter. 7 and kept her away from his convicted father. Life is unfair. Finally. he was very weak and abused by those people who are in power. The justice department decided to give him a death sentence. punched him. Yong Gu was put into prison without a due process. However. They made sure that he will say the truth. He followed the girl’s direction to the store but the worst thing happened because the girl accidentally hit her head to a hard object which led to her death. So Yang-Ho offered to help Yong Gu to see his daughter. They tried to fly out. while Ye-Sung was sent to a childcare institution. 7 Movie Analysis Synopsis: Miracle in Cell No. They became friends and later. a loving daughter. However. The prisoners make a hot air-balloon and let them in there. the day was December 23th. He tried to revive the life of the girl. People decide to help Yong-Gu and Ye-sung’s family. Yong Gu was unable to do so because his mind was occupied by the threat of the police commissioner. They were looking at the sailor moon bag which Ye-Sung likes and all of a sudden. The chief also found out that Yong Gu has no capacity to commit such crime because of his childish behaviour and also he proved that he’s a good father. He is accused of sexual assault because when he was trying to do an artificial respiration. the bag was sold to a couple and their daughter. In return. he admitted the crime which really is an accident. One day. The inmates and Chief Jang helped Yong Gu to prove his innocence to court. Despite of being rude. 7 is a Korean movie based on the story of a mentally handicapped father named Yong Gu and Ye-Sung. Yong Gu went inside the store to approach the buyer’s daughter and because of that. Yong-gu couldn’t contradict the claim because he is not able to speak well. the father who happens to be the police commissioner. In prison. They are enjoying a happy life while Yong-gu works in a parking lot at a supermarket. that his daughter Ye-Sung will pay if he will deny the crime. The chief also found out that Yong Gu has no capacity to commit such crime because of his childish behavior and also he proved that he’s a good father. Being poor and having a disability. All of his cellmates planned to make the miracle happen by taking Ye-Sung from a Christian ministry event and putting her into a box so the guards will not notice her.Miracle in Cell No. someone explained that he was trying rape her.

as by the end of the film. making sure she’s eating right and doing good in school. filling my heart with love in the process. . I loved how the father’s purity and kindness were able to reach out to the inmates. The dad and daughter showed them how to love. Be kind anyway because in the end. This is a magnificent representation of how a daughter could have defended her father from being executed. It happened before. Sadly. she saw a balloon that hanged to fence and cast back. kindness always win. but for once I hoped that we could get some well- deserved justice. You can see that the daughter feels the same way towards him. Ye-Sung is trying to clear her father of false accusation. Years have passed and Ye. she got a sentence of innocence. and how it affected the most honest and innocent people. the executor calls Yong-Gu. and attracted them to him. and so pure and innocent with his child-like ways that it wasn’t hard to be emotionally attached to him. and this converted the inmates into better individuals ready to put others before themselves. without expecting anything in return. the lawyer of Yong Gu at that time was not willing to help him. He was so selfless. I loved the father and daughter relationship in the movie because their love for each other is genuine and contagious. I thought that Ye-Sung is the lawyer of Yong Gu at the time of his trial because there’s a scene wherein Ye-Sung hugs and comforts his crying father. In reality. after all that has been done. Finally. Yong-Gu and Ye-sung started to cry and hugged each other because that would be their last moment. but there will always be that case wherein you'll be treated badly despite your good intentions. I hate how corruption works.sung's birthday. Even though the dad was in prison.Yong-Gu’s electrocution and her daughter Ye . The room 7 people group up and wish happy birthday to Ye-sung but soon. At first. I know that justice here in the Philippines is so slow that it takes years or decades and sometimes results into nothing. I like the style of this movie because there’s a flashback which the adult Ye-Sung became a lawyer and tried to prove his father’s innocence even though he’s gone. Ye – sung wanted to see his father so Jin- Young helps to see his father before he gets electrocution. it happens now. his child was still always in his thoughts. because it only goes to show that kindness goes a long way. After that. you may have all the good intentions for any actions you make. I began to think how many daughters lost their fathers since the justice system (not just in the Philippines) didn't work as it should be.Sung became an adult. calling out for her. Insights: Personally. when she walked out. Thinking about them makes me cry as well. Seeing someone so kind-hearted being sentenced to death makes me bawl my eyes out. and it will happen again. she became a lawyer just so she could clear his name. I adored how they believed in his innocence and tried their best to save him from being convicted of a crime he did not do. She became a judicial apprentice and for his father. I still wish it ended differently.

You can have the highest rank. The film has shown us how cruel our systems can be. It tells us that no matter the pain and judgment we may receive in life. Arrogant people blame others easily just so they could save themselves. who can’t speak up on their own. yet you step on others just so you could remain in power and you never humble yourself to critiques. However. Worst. As an ending. 7 is indeed a movie filled with laughter and tears. The prisoners in cell number 7 have undeniably shown the real human nature. righteous and truthful people. in the end the truth shall set us free from all the pain that made us cry. the nature of man to care and love their fellow human being. That the people behind the corrupted system tend to abuse their authority is no less than people of low honor. It can also portray the way people act when they are in power that sometimes they abuse their power and mislead the rules and laws. there are still kind. People who may not be what they seem to be just because they are on not so good place.Critique: Miracle in Cell No. especially to those. our ranks or positions are not the basis. There may be sacrifices but always keep the faith. in the middle of all these things that happened. In life. It captures few realities we encounter in life. What we do matters the most. they won’t accept other people’s opinion for they say that they are the ones. . which in turn are being judged because of where they are. The film can teach us to be kind to others and not to jump on anger for whatever negative things we encounter. who should always be followed. the movie bounced back with truth and justice.

As his new mattress is delivered. Darby realizes that the caller and his savior is none other than Shelton. his cellmate and the other prisoners are visibly upset for the unfair treatment. Ten years have passed and Ames is executed via lethal injection. Shelton is very careful with his words so as not to give Nick any solid confession. Clyde Shelton seeks out the help of Nick Rice. Shelton bargains to give the location of Darby’s missing attorney in return for an expensive steak dinner along with his iPod. they receive a package with a DVD. he confesses not only to killing Darby but also to having altered the lethal injection chemical that made Ames' death agonizing. Nick refuses at first. resulting in the food arriving at Shelton's cell eight minutes late. However. witnesses the rape and murder of both his wife and five-year old daughter at the hands of two criminals. he and the police go to arrest Shelton.Law Abiding Citizen Movie Analysis Synopsis: Clyde Shelton. injecting him with a substance and paralyzing him. an engineer. Unfortunately. After the murder of his family. Nick interrogates Shelton looking for a confession. Meanwhile. When Nick learned of the details of Darby’s death. Darby was called by mysterious caller who alerted him to approaching police and tells him where a pistol he can use to his advantage. At Shelton’s prosecution hearing. a successful and upcoming attorney who has a conviction rate of ninety-six percent. Darby tries to shoot him with the pistol. Nick’s main concern is his reputation and not justice itself. he gives in. essentially. Slowly. Nick tries to persuade the judge not to give Shelton a bail. at Nick’s house. Rice along with a detective. but later on. but leaving him fully conscious. find Darby’s lawyer buried alive and only minutes dead causing him to suffocate because the food was delivered late. Nick’s daughter plays it and is horrified to see that it’s the taped killing of Darby. he will come to where he is. At the meeting place. but it turns out as a trick gun. Shelton felt betrayed to what happened. After receiving his mattress. Rice makes a secret deal with Darby that he will provide testimony that will send Ames to death row for what is. a robbery charge. He felt devastated and helpless at the that time because he cannot do something for his family. Nick is at work looking into how to find Darby. when he gets a call saying Darby was found. who break in his house. he cut off the body parts of Darby with a video camera inside to send it to Nick. Clyde then proposes a deal that he will give Nick a confession of the crime if they bring him a nice mattress. It was the same judge who headed over Shelton’s families murder hearing 10 years ago when Darby’s deal was taken. The caller tells him if he wants to escape the police. The warden demanded for multiple precautions. Darby and Ames. He is told by prosecutor Nick that the case was compromised by a poor forensic investigation and Shelton's testimony cannot lay the blame on either man because he blacked out during the incident. . One day. The next day. Shelton expected the cops to come after him and turns himself in without fighting.

“Chester”. Shelton drives back to prison and proceeds back to his cell. Shelton goes on a rant where he explains this is exactly what is wrong with the justice system that the system is about to let a killer bail out. At the city hall. As Nick watches from the car behind. so Nick asks them to go home for a few hours to get some rest before resuming their work. Nick tries to talk Shelton out of blowing the bomb. the car in front carrying Jonas is pierced with bullets and blown apart by the missile. As Sarah and the other staff go to their cars and leave. Someone suggest that they evacuate the building but Nick rejects that as Shelton will know if they evacuate. a remote controlled mini-tank that carries a high-powered rifle and a missile launcher targeting them was shown. Shelton was able to go in and out of the prison as he pleased because of the tunnel.Shelton. Nick asks Sarah and many other staff to move their operations to the prison. and he was locked in with it. we see that that bombs that were planted in their car kill them all. He also places a suitcase full of a highly flammable material in the room directly below the meeting chamber. having decided to represent himself. Nick and Jonas went to Sarah’s funeral and as they leave their car. with the exact dollar amounts of all of Shelton’s property purchases. another cop locks the door to the tunnel from the back. The judge is convinced. Nick arrives at the city hall with the bomb squad and they inspect the bomb and find out it is armed by a cell phone call. thus bail should be granted. Shelton realized that they have moved the bomb to his cell. knowing the flammable material will be capable of blowing out the chamber above. The last scene shows Nick with his wife at his daughter’s cello concert. Nick gets a message from Sarah’s informant. at which point he will blow it up right away. but Shelton insists on blowing it up. After Shelton has left. goes on to explain that the prosecution has not provided any evidence to prove that he is the killer. and just as she is about to grant Shelton bail. Nick tells him that “you’ve brought this upon yourself” and leaves and locks the gate behind him. Shelton accepts his fate and stares at the bracelet his daughter made for him as he is engulfed by flames. He proceeds to insult the judge and the system and the judge holds him in disapproval. where they will be conducting their research overnight. As he calls the cell phone to arm the bomb. As the cars leave. because there is no admissible evidence. Nick and his staff are tired. Nick discovers that Shelton owns an old factory right next to the prison he is staying in at the moment. he sees that Nick is in his cell. . Nick goes to investigate and he discovers a secret tunnel from the factory that tunnels into every cell in solitary confinement in the prison. Shelton gets in and taps into the security system and takes a live video feed from the chamber where the Mayor’s meeting will take place. When he gets back. the tank disables all the electronics in the cars and stops them. At the same time.

which means we have to take the view that anyone subject to injustice is being treated as unequal. Justice is something meant to be handled at the present moment. I had mixed emotions while watching the movie. We commit mistakes and sometimes carried away by our desires in life that leads us to the wrong path. The government “system” is supposed to punish those who are wrong. sadness. I just hope that in every society. As to what I observed in the movie. justice for Shelton’s family was not achieved. Indeed! If we allow something wrong to happen in one place. But in fact. I would really feel betrayed because justice should be fair and equal to all. since one actually committed the crime while the other was just an accessory. then we set the foundation for it to happen anywhere. but since they delayed and manipulated it. Although the morality of these two killings can be argued. I don’t think it will ever be possible. anger. But in the trial of Darby and Ames. To make it worst. As much as I want to have a fair justice system. the truth will always prevail and justice would be fair and equal to all of us despite of our differences in life. “Justice delayed is justice denied”. then they would've handled the situation right. Can you blame Shelton? My answer would be no. justice for your family was not granted. If it was important to the person. I cannot imagine my life without my family and I don’t think I can ever forgive someone who did that brutality to my family. then that means it's not an important issue to them. I cannot blame Clyde Shelton for his way of revenge because seeing your family die right in front of you is the most painful scenario that could happen to you. they both had the intention to harm Shelton and other members of society. only Ames was punished severely while Darby was allowed to go free.Insights: “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere”. . We are just humans and we are not perfect. no matter what happens. it was Darby who killed Shelton’s wife and daughter and Ames was only an accomplished. pity and disappointment. since they will not have another opportunity to wrong someone else. It’s really heartbreaking to see that justice to someone cannot be achieved easily and sometimes manipulated by people who are high in rank. Shelton believes he is doing the greatest good to society by killing these two men. If I were in his position. A democratic society is based on the idea that everyone is equal.

Shelton can be described as a ruthless criminal and murderer or controversially as an unfairly treated lonely widow. Although the justice system is designed to serve justice within a society fair and adequately. If this order is not maintained then chaos will occur. Like in today’s society. It is a movie that gives an example to a broken legal system that doesn’t hold individuals accountable for their actions and a man’s mission to teach a lesson of personal responsibility. the concept remains that those who do not follow laws and norms will be punished. . The justice for his family was not granted. In today’s society. The movie is very violent because the central act of this movie is first viewed to be murder. This issue is portrayed in the movie as a serious problem in the criminal law system but it is also rampant in today’s society. The movie highlights the corruption of the legal system not only in their place but also to other places. Shelton takes matters into his own hands and instead murders everyone involved with his case and the murder. the movie portrays the legal system being responsible for serving justice. as the plot continues viewers learn that the true act is revenge against the criminal justice system which is accomplished through a series of murders. plea-bargaining is an example of how the system is flawed. the quality of being treated just or fair within given circumstances. However.Critique Law Abiding Citizen focuses on the topic of justice.

Naparan . Balgos Submitted to: Fiscal Elmarie Ardina . JMJ MARIST BROTHERS NOTRE DAME OF KIDAPAWAN COLLEGE Movie Analysis for POLITICAL SCIENCE 301 Submitted By: Christine Iyle Q.