Analysis Of Frank Darabont's Shawshank Redemption

1262 Words6 Pages
“Hope is a good thing. Maybe the best of things. And no good thing ever dies.” Andy Dufresne, the protagonist of Frank Darabont’s Shawshank Redemption, delivers these words in a hand-written letter to his best friend Red, predicting that Red would read the letter after escaping prison one day. Having spent nearly two decades behind metal bars for a crime he didn’t commit, Dufresne had every reason in the world to relinquish any hope he possessed and submit to the conformity of Shawshank prison. He did not, however. Instead of surrendering hope, Andy acts upon his own will and persistently pushes himself to live in a society he does not belong to. Through the various characters inhabiting inside the maximum-security penitentiary, Shawshank Redemption…show more content…
Despite the cruel, harsh beatings and onerous, grim times of solitary, Andy for some reason never concedes; instead, he persistently lives by his rules and improves the quality of life of others in prison. Noticing Andy’s unusual behavior, Red acknowledges his first impression of Andy as if “an invisible coat … shielded him from [Shawshank]” (Shawshank Redemption). While Andy strolls along in this scene, the background music transmits viewers a sense of hope, such feeling that no amount of harm or abuse can crush Andy’s free will. Andy also utilizes diegetic sound to act upon his own will and lift other inmates’ spirits. Locking a prison guard in the bathroom, Dufresne plays Mozart’s “The Marriage of Figaro” and blasts it on the announcement mic, which forces everyone to stop and stare in awe. In this scene, the director employs an extreme long shot to capture the mass population of the prison, who stops what they are doing and tries to comprehend what exactly is happening. Red describes that those voices “made [the] walls dissolve away” and “for the briefest of moments, every … man at Shawshank felt free” (Shawshank Redemption). Dufresne clearly violates the law; as a result, he spends two weeks in complete solitary, which later he describes as the easiest two weeks spent alone. Ultimately, Andy follows his exigency in life and the rules he sets upon himself by crafting and assembling his own boat to glide upon the pristine, emerald-like waters of Zihuatanejo. Dufresne lives in contrast of Brooks, an “institutionalized man.” Per Red, Andy’s “feathers are … too bright” to be “caged” within the walls of Shawshank (Shawshank Redemption). Although physically imprisoned, Andy lives mentally a free man all throughout; it was only a matter of time until he walked back into the society he
Open Document