December 22, 2010

The Shawshank Redemption

The Top 63 Marathon, part 63 (#1!)

Title: The Shawshank Redemption
Year: 1994
Length: 142 minutes
Director: Frank Darabont
Writer: Frank Darabont, based on a story by Stephen King
Starring: Tim Robbins, Morgan Freeman, Bob Gunton
Music: Thomas Newman (and non-original music)
Distinctions: Oscar nominations for Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Actor (Freeman), Best Score, Best Cinematography, Best Editing and Best Sound; currently #1 on the IMDb's Top 250

My reaction
Synopsis: a quiet banker goes to prison for murder
How I saw it: on video a few times, most recently yesterday (rented from Netflix)
Concept: Indifferent.
Story: Bad.
Characters: Good.
Dialog: Bad.
Pacing: Good.
Cinematography: Good.
Special effects/design: Indifferent. Worst makeup ever.
Acting: Indifferent. As if the lack of makeup effects isn't bad enough, Robbins inexplicably chooses to convey the aging of his character by doing a Bill Pullman impression.
Music: Good.
Subjective Rating: 5/10 (Indifferent). Corny, cliche, and just plain bad storytelling. More than half a million people have ranked it at the IMDb, and almost all of them love it. I swear it must be an enormous conspiracy (and even my wife is in on it - she likes it and is unable or unwilling to say why). I just get nothing out of this movie. What does Stephen King have on you people?
Objective Rating: 2.2/4 (Okay).

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