September 23rd, 2014 marks the twentieth anniversary of the release of The Shawshank Redemption, which has ranked as my favorite movie ever since I first saw it, which was probably about 2 years after it came out. To celebrate the milestone, I watched the movie again for around the 20th time (at least) and kept a running diary of it. If you have not seen it, you must, must, must watch it. Right now. Go. Otherwise, read on.
00:00:10 (DVD Run time) ♪”If I didn’t care, more than words can say”♪…the music fades and we see Andy Dufresne in the car outside of a house…UH OH HE HAS A GUN! AND LOTS OF SHELLS. AND VODKA…this will not end well.
00:02:14 “I’ll see you in hell before I see you in Reno” – that seems a bit harsh from Andy, after all I’ve been to Reno and it’s not that bad. But how did this case look to the prosecutors and the jury: he confesses to being outside the house, mad at his wife for having an affair, with a gun on the night she was murdered.
00:04:17 “Since I’m innocent of this crime, I find it decidedly inconvenient” – your freedom is on the line, Dufresne, and you get sarcastic with the prosecutor…seems cold. I cannot remember whether or not I thought he was guilty first time I watched this movie, but looking back I’m starting to think he might have actually done it and isn’t, you know “fo’real innocent”
00:06:14 – Red’s first parole hearing (that we see) out of three. I love how he’s clearly just reciting rote answers to questions, then comes out and tells his friends “Same shit, different day”, with the futility of the proceedings being pointed out by another prisoner saying “I’m up for rejection next week”.
00:07:58 “There must be a con like me in every prison in America” – and in Orange is the New Black, she even has the same nickname, Red!
00:08:27 This is the first shot of the prison, which is actually in Mansfield, Ohio. My wife took me there last summer and it was simultaneously fascinating to see the place where my favorite movie was shot; and horrifying to think that people were actually incarcerated in such a shithole that had so much lead in the paint, we could both feel it in our lungs by the time we left. Also, our tour guide said he had NEVER SEEN THE SHAWSHANK REDMEPTION…but he did buy into a whole load of ghost stories about the place so we got to hear a lot about them.
00:11:00 I really do not know whether or not after enough time had passed in prison, I would find myself willing to bet on which new inmate would break first…but if I did, the guy wearing a bow tie who is in tears while he is being marched in would definitely be my choice.
00:11:57 On the tour, you get to walk into the prison and look up at the same angle as Andy does as he is being marched in. I tried to take a video that would replica the movie but it fell short on two counts: 1) Frank Darabont is a great director; 2) I was using an iPhone.
00:12:50 Warden Norden makes his authority known by having Hadley beat someone for daring to ask when they eat, then tells the prisoners “Put your faith in the Lord, your ass belong to me…(muttering) and the sisters.”
00:14:35 I don’t mean to spoil the ending for anybody who might be watching along with this and has never seen it before (which will literally be zero people so I’m just going to go ahead and spoil) but how lucky was it that Andy got an end cell. And also for Heywood that “fat-ass” (sorry I do not know if he had any other name in the movie) was his neighbor and he got to wind him up until he broke.
00:15:34 We now take a break in this running diary to get an article from Buzzfeed…
The 7 Best Lines in the Scene When Fat-Ass Breaks Down Crying
1. “You’ll wish your Daddy never dicked your Mommy”
2. “Poke your ass out, give me a first look”.
3. “And it’s Fat Ass, by a nose!”
4. “I want my Mommy” “I had your Mommy, she wasn’t that great!”
5. Hadley: “What the Christ is this happy horse shit” Inmate: “He took the Lord’s name in vain. I’m telling the warden”.
6. “What is your malfunction you fat barrel of monkey spunk” – Captain Hadley the charmer.
7. “You run this place like a fucking prison!”
Then Hadley beats Fat Ass to death and it doesn’t all quite seem so funny…still number 5 was great. Continue reading