What is there to say about The Shawshank Redemption? Clearly there is a reason for it’s widespread popularity, and thankfully that praise is warranted. While far from the best film I’ve ever seen (it currently holds the #1 spot on IMDB), I can’t argue against it being a great… read more film. In particular, the performances by Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman are inspiring enough to power the film through it’s slower passages. The cinematography has been praised for good reason as well, a lot of thought was obviously put into every shot to convey a certain feeling or message. Although I found the story arc to be somewhat predictable, the art of storytelling is the real star here, guiding us through themes that are masterfully simple on the surface, but have a lot going on underneath for you to think about later on. Really the only thing that held this film back for me is it’s reliance on some rather cliche (at least at this point in time) plot developments amidst it’s middle act. Being objective though, it’s hard to tell whether that is the fault of the way it was crafted, or just the result of the film being so broad in it’s scope. Either way, it stands the test of time as a film very much worth viewing. Maybe we have been looking at Shawshank all wrong. Maybe it’s not so amazing because of how many people think it’s great, maybe it’s because of how few people there are that don’t. It certainly has a message that everyone can appreciate.