Tuesday, April 5, 2011

The Count of Monty Crisco

Among the many things I do not pretend to be an aficionado of are movies.  Margaret and I do not go to the cinema too often.  Off the top of my head I think the last film we saw on the big screen was Gran Torino.  Perhaps it was The Wrestler.  Once every two-plus years or so we make it to the theatre whether we need to or not.

While I do not pretend to be a student of film and feel my eyes glaze over when I read a movie review in which the reviewer discusses the finer points of cinematography or some such thing, I know what I like.  Among the movies I cannot watch enough is The Shawshank Redemption.  I know it is based upon a short story, which I have never read (and one day perhaps I will), and I know that it is among my absolute favorite films.  The story of Andy Dufresne and his unlikely best friend Ellis Boyd Redding - told principally from behind the walls of the Shawshank State Prison in Maine - is one that I never get tired of viewing.  It is a film that if I happen upon it after it has started I watch from my point of entry until its conclusion.

Sunday afternoon the Missus and me caught it from jump.  It was on AMC so it was interrupted by commercials and edited for television but it mattered little.  It is simply - for me anyway - an exquisite movie.  A story so well told that I never tire of hearing it and watching it.  Part of the attraction for me is Morgan Freeman's recurring narration.  Often times a character's voice over strikes me as distracting - something that adds nothing to advancing the story.  Not in Shawshank.  Freeman's character's voice is heard just where and when it should be. 

At its core, it is not a movie about prison life.  It is not even simply a movie about the fraternal bond formed by and between two men who arrived at a common place from two distinctly different places.  Rather, its core is found here, "There are places in this world that aren't made out of stone. That there's something inside... that they can't get to, that they can't touch. That's yours."

Hope.  It is a good thing.....regardless of where you are.  You never can have enough of it.


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