The Shawshank Redemption Reviews

Top Critic
Gene Siskel
Chicago Tribune
January 16, 2013
Simply marvelous entertainment.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Richard Schickel
TIME Magazine
June 15, 2011
Freeman, who is simply a great actor, a man who has never struck a false note in his career, both narrates this tale and anchors it with his authoritative playing.
Top Critic
Leonard Klady
Variety
June 28, 2007
A testament to the human spirit...
Top Critic
Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader
June 28, 2007
A passing reference to 'The Count of Monte Cristo' offers a partial clue to what makes this movie compelling.
Top Critic
Derek Adams
Time Out
June 24, 2006
...a throwback to the kind of serious, literate drama Hollywood used to make.
Top Critic

Boston Globe
September 24, 2004
It's a simple story elegantly, cleverly told, not to mention expertly acted.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Janet Maslin
New York Times
May 20, 2003
Without a single riot scene or horrific effect, it tells a slow, gentle story of camaraderie and growth, with an ending that abruptly finds poetic justice in what has come before.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Top Critic
Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
May 12, 2001
It's the no-bull performances that hold back the flood of banalities.
| Original Score: 4.5/5
Top Critic
Desson Thomson
Washington Post
January 1, 2000
It wanders down subplots at every opportunity and ignores an abundance of narrative exit points before settling on the aforementioned finale.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
January 1, 2000
If the film is perhaps a little slow in its middle passages, maybe that is part of the idea, too, to give us a sense of the leaden passage of time, before the glory of the final redemption.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
January 1, 2000
The Shawshank Redemption is all about hope and, because of that, watching it is both uplifting and cathartic.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Rita Kempley
Washington Post
January 1, 2000
It's a devoutly old-fashioned, spiritually uplifting prison drama about two lifers who must break their emotional shackles before they can finally become free men.
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
Top Critic
Peter Stack
San Francisco Chronicle
January 1, 2000
Thanks to fine performances and beautiful photography, you get that inspirational jump-start frame after frame.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
September 10, 1994
With his gift for rapt pauses, for caressing just the right syllable, Freeman can make a speech like that sound like one of the philosophical nuggets of the ages.
Full Review | Original Score: B-