The Shawshank Redemption - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Shawshank Redemption Reviews

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Top Critic
Duane Byrge
Hollywood Reporter
September 23, 2016
In the lead roles, both Robbins and Freeman are outstanding, layering their performances with snippets of individuality: Their small, daily sustenances and minor triumphs are wonderfully inspiring.
Top Critic
Dave Kehr
New York Daily News
September 22, 2015
This is an engagingly simple, good-hearted film, with just enough darkness around the edges to give contrast and relief to its glowingly benign view of human nature.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Betty Jo Tucker
ReelTalk Movie Reviews
December 17, 2014
Top-notch performances, exceptional cinematography, and masterful direction combine to make this film something special indeed.
June 3, 2014
Watching these actors work together is a real treat, and they more than make up for the script's deficiencies.
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.

June 15, 2011
Powerful, poignant, thought-provoking and finally irresistibly uplifting.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Ian Nathan
Empire Magazine
June 15, 2011
If you don't love Shawshank, chances are you're beyond redemption.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews
March 16, 2011
Spiritually moving old-fashioned prison pic.
Full Review | Original Score: A-
Heather Boerner
Common Sense Media
December 18, 2010
Gritty but comforting story of friendship.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Louise Keller
Urban Cinefile
February 27, 2009
I love this film. It's a story about hope and dreams and one whose emotional impact is as great as the Pacific Ocean is blue.
November 20, 2008
Darabont explores the range of human kindness and cruelty as he lovingly and patiently sculpts his large cast of characters against magnificent scenery.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
John J. Puccio
Movie Metropolis
November 19, 2008
...itself a testament to overcoming odds. It is sentimental and stereotyped, yet we are able not only to suspend our disbelief but to root for it all the way.
Full Review | Original Score: 8/10
David Nusair
Reel Film Reviews
July 30, 2008
...has certainly earned its reputation as one of the most effective prison movies in cinematic history...
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
Rob Gonsalves
September 23, 2007
It's an old-school melodrama at heart, sturdy and forthright and upstanding, but without a whisper of complexity or wit.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Leonard Klady
June 28, 2007
A testament to the human spirit...

TV Guide
June 28, 2007
A 'life-affirming' tale about life imprisonment, The Shawshank Redemption is the kind of old-fashioned entertainment that is easily overvalued in an era of diminishing expectations.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
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.
Emanuel Levy
January 13, 2007
I have not read Stephen King's novella (his first non-horror), but some of the movie's deficiencies, such as the old-fashioned morality tale and portentous messge about camarderie and redemption--must have been in the source material.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
JoBlo's Movie Emporium
June 24, 2006
An amazing movie. Easily one of the best movies made during the 90s and definitely one of the top 'prison' movies of all-time. Pretty much everything about this movie works and works extremely well!
Full Review | Original Score: 10/10
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