The popularity of the Shawshank Redemption

Although a commercial failure at the box office, the Shawshank Redemption has become one of the most popular films in Hollywood history. Originally a short story by the famous writer Stephen King, the rights were purchased by Director Frank Darabont. He worked on a script for a good five years before submitting and getting a green light to make the film some five years later. The script received a lot of attention from some of the many leading lights at the time, such as Tom Hanks and Tom Cruise. But eventually, Darabont settled on Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman to play the lead roles of Andy Dufresne and Red Redding.

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The film is a prison drama. This was seen as one of the main reasons the film didn’t do so well at the box office. Cinema-goers were not impressed with the all-male cast and the setting. It was seen as pedestrian compared to the intensity of Pulp Fiction. The story is simple enough. Andy Dufresne is an accountant convicted of killing his wife and her lover when he discovers their affair. However, Andy is innocent of the crime. He begins his concurrent life sentence at Shawshank and soon becomes a target for the inmates. However, his skill as an accountant helps one of the guards to secure an inheritance without tax, quite legally. It is the same way that we use Stroud Accountants like to help us make the most of our tax allowances in a legal way. This skill gives Andy some protection from the normally languid guards.

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Andy soon starts to help the other guards and even begins to do work for other prison officers as well. The warden of Shawshank begins to use Andy to find ways to embellish and launder money, making a profit from non-existent government-funded labour schemes. When another criminal admits to the killing of Andy’s wife and lover, Andy asks the Warden for help. The Warden says no and threatens Andy with unpleasant conditions and the destruction of the prison library.

Andy escapes with the use of a rock hammer and a large poster of Rita Hayworth. He takes the ledgers confirming the Warden’s guilt and mails them to the district attorney. He then takes the laundered money and flees to Mexico to start a new life. Eventually, Red comes to join him.

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