Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest Review

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest

Release Date: 6th July 2006 - Australia

Production Companies
Walt Disney Pictures
Jerry Bruckheimer Films

Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Australia

Genre: Action/Adventure

Rating: M
Runtime: 145 minutes

Budget: $225,000,00

Box Office Gross: $1,066,179,725 

Plot Summary
Once again we're plunged into a world of sword fights and "savvy" pirates. Captain Jack Sparrow is reminded he owes a debt to Davy Jones, who captains the Flying Dutchman, a ghostly ship with a crew from hell. Facing the "locker" Jack must find the heart of Davy Jones but to save himself he must get the help of quick-witted Will Turner and Elizabeth Swann. If that's not complicated enough, Will and Elizabeth are sentenced to hang unless Will can get Jack's compass for Lord Cutler Beckett. Will is forced to join another crazy adventure with Jack.

Johnny Depp - Captain Jack Sparrow
Bill Nighy - Davy Jones
Orlando Bloom - Will Turner
Keira Knightely - Elizabeth Swann
Jack Davenport - Norrington
Jonathan Pryce - Governor Weatherby Swann
Kevin McNally - Joshamee Gibbs 
Stellar Skarsgard - Bootstrap Bill
Lee Arenberg - Pintel
Mackenzie Crook - Ragetti

Tom Hollander - Cutler Beckett
Naomie Harris - Tia Dalma
David Bailie - Cotton
Martin Klebba - Marty
David Schofield - Mercer

Alex Norton - Captain Bellamy
Geoffrey Rush - Hector Barbossa
Dermot Keaney - Maccus
Andy Beckwith - Clanker
Clive Ashborn - Koleniko
Reggie Lee - Hadras
Christopher Adamson - Jimmy Legs
Jonathan Linsley - Ogilvely
John Boswall - Wyvern
Max Baker - Burser
Steve Speirs - Quartermaster
Lauren Maher - Scarlett
Vanessa Branch - Giselle 

Director - Gore Verbinski
Based on Characters/Writers - Ted Elliott and Terry Rossio
Based on Characters - Stuart Beattie and Jay Wolpert
Executive Producers - Mike Stenson, Chad Oman and Bruce Hendricks
Executive Producer/Unit Production Manager - Eric McLeod
Producer - Jerry Bruckheimer
Historical Advisor - Peter Twist
Production Designer - Rick Heinrichs
Costume Designer - Penny Rose
Makeup Effects Creator/
Department Head - Ve Neill
Director of Photography - Dariusz Wolski
Second Unit Director: Dominica/Stunt Coordinator - George Marshall Ruge 
Sword Master/Specialist (Uncredited)/Stunt Double: Jack Davenport - Thomas DuPont
Special Effects Supervisors - Allen Hall and Michael Lantieri
Visual Effects Supervisors - John Knoll, Huseyin Caner and Alex Frisch
Visual Effects Supervisor: 
Additional Visuals - Charles 
Additional Visual Effects Supervisors: ILM - Bill George and Roger Guyett
Animation Supervisor: ILM - Hal T. Hickel
Film Editors - Craig Wood and Stephen Rivkin
Music Supervisor - Bob Badami
Music - Hans Zimmer
Composer: Theme Music - Klaus Badelt


2007 Academy Awards
Best Visual Effects - John Knoll, Hal T. Hickel, Allen Hall and Charles Gibson (Won)
Best Art Direction - Rick Heinrichs and Cheryl Carasik (Nominated)
Best Sound Mixing - Paul Massey, Christopher Boyes and Lee Orloff (Nominated)
Best Sound Editing - Christopher Boyes and George Watters II (Nominated)

While THE CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL received a standing ovation of being a worthy pirate film, the PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN sequels were not as well-known as the original and are a mixed bag among viewers. I barely watched them (except for ON STRANGER TIDES), but now is the time to watch all entries in a canonical order before I go see DEAD MEN TELL NO TALES in theatres. DEAD MAN'S CHEST was the middle child of the series and is unable to surpass the standards of the previous film. The crucial display of balancing action and comedy is nowhere to be found as the plot becomes too convoluted with some exposition. Director Gore Verbinski and the screen writers Ted Elliott and Terry Rossio become caught up with the first film's success as Disney and Jerry Bruckheimer wanted DEAD MAN'S CHEST to be bigger and better than the last movie. This sequel was too slickly overproduced to be considered as an even better sequel despite all the great lengths that came with the lavish scenery, brilliant sword fighting and extravagant visuals. Sadly, these aspects were simply not enough to save the second instalment from a fair scale of rating.

Johnny Depp was almost as funny when continuing his role of Captain Jack Sparrow after he had astonished audiences in the character's big debut of the first film. He was very sincere that he was cheeky and unrestrained and to amuse himself of his improvised acting. Actor Bill Nighy was in a hideous disguise as the squid-like part crustacean pirate of Davy Jones when he was cast into that antagonist role. This has to do with the computer-generated imagery that camouflaged him to look very fishy in this transformation. The rousing adventurous score by Hans Zimmer was incredible it included strings, pipes and concussions to create a sound familiar to the original themes by Klaus Badelt.

DEAD MAN'S CHEST was a bit disjointed but nonetheless a decent addition to the PIRATES franchise. It's not the best of the sequels, but easy come easy go, it's a mildly entertaining film to say the least. Highly recommended to those who were fans of the PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN movies.

Star rating: (6/10) Fair Movie

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Review

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

Release Date: 25th April 2017 - Australia

Production Companies
Marvel Studios
Marvel Entertainment

Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Australia

Genre: Sci-Fi

Rating: M

Runtime: 136 minutes

Budget: $200,000,000

Box Office Gross: $636,957,009 (Worldwide) (This figure may change as new editions earn more money and increase the overall value of the box office gross)

Plot Summary
Peter Quill and his fellow Guardians are hired by a powerful alien race, the Sovereign, to protect their precious batteries from invaders. When it is discovered that Rocket has stolen the items they were sent to guard, the Sovereign dispatch their armada in search for vengeance. As the guardians try to escape, the mystery of Peter's parentage is revealed.

Chris Pratt - Peter Quill/
Zoe Saldana - Gamora
Bradley Cooper - Rocket (Voice)
Dave Bautista - Drax the
Vin Diesel - Baby Groot (Voice)
Kurt Russell - Ego
Pom Klementieff - Mantis
Elizabeth Debicki - Ayesha
Michael Rooker - Yondu
Karen Gillan - Nebula
Chris Sullivan - Taserface
Sean Gunn - Kraglin/On Set Rocket
Krystian Godlewski - On Set Groot
Sylvester Stallone - Stakar Ogord
Laura Haddock - Meredith Quill
Wyatt Oleff - Young Peter Quill
Gregg Henry - Grandpa Henry
Evan Jones - Wrench
Jimmy Urine - Half-Nut
Stephen Blackehart - Brahl
Steve Agee - Gef
Mike Escamilla - Scrote
Joe Fria - Oblo
Terence Rosemore - Narblik
Tommy Flanagan - Tullk
Michael Rosenbaum - Martinex T'Naga
Ving Rhames - Charlie-27
Michelle Yeoh - Aleta Ogora
Miley Cyrus - Mainframe (Voice) (Uncredited)
Seth Green - Howard the Duck (Voice) (Cameo)
Jeff Goldblum - Grandmaster (Cameo) (Uncredited)

Writer/Director - James Gunn
Based on Comic Book
"Guardians of the Galaxy" -
Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning
Starlord Creators - Steve Englehart and Steve Gan
Gamora and Drax Creator - Jim Starlin
Groot Creator/Executive Producer - Stan Lee
Groot Creators - Larry Lieber and Jack Kirby
Rocket Raccoon Creators - Bill Mantlo and Keith Giffen
Executive Producers - Victoria Alonso, Louis D'Esposito and Jonathan Schwartz
Executive Producer/Unit Production Manager - Nikolas Korda
Producer - Kevin Feige
Co-Producers - David J. Grant and Lars P. Winther
Production Designer - Scott Chambliss
Costume Designer - Judianna Makosvky
Cinematography - Henry Braham
Special Effects Supervisor - Daniel Sudick
Visual Effects Supervisor: Framestore - Patric Roos
Visual Effects Supervisors - Matthew Crnich,
Doug Spiltaro and Christopher Townsend
Additional Visual Effects Supervisor - Edwin Rivera
Visual Effects Producer - Susan Pickett
Film Editors - Fred Raskin and Craig Wood
Music Supervisor - Dave Jordan
Music - Tyler Bates

My moviegoing experience of the first GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY movie (click herewouldn't be the same if I had not seen the new chapter in theatres. The thrilling cosmic action, humour and 70s music were reinstated in GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 2 and it was a surprising continuation that everyone agrees it has the same impact of the original movie. Writer/Director James Gunn has masterminded the call for a sequel of continuing the wild space adventures of Marvel's very own sci-fi heroes. The film was thickened with a thoughtful storyline and complex characterisations but it boasts an immense visual display. It loses none of these aspects that were continued to be used in the feature that is neither as significant as what other viewers say about it. It would seem that the plot has some similarities to THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK (click here) and it has more of a bittersweet closing than a downer ending.

The original actors like Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Bradley Cooper, etc. are back as the famed eponymous group of heroes that were ready to save the galaxy again from evil forces. Even undisputed macho man Vin Diesel is now voicing the cutesy and diminutive version of Groot. For the newer cast members, Kurt Russell was a legendary and truly remarkable actor when portraying Star-Lord's estranged father who was mysterious and godlike and his true intentions are yet to be discovered. Elizabeth Debecki was capable of using sheer brutal menace when acting as the vengeful Ayesha and that she may return to the character in the final instalment in the near-future. French actress Pom Klementieff was cast as the lovable but naive Mantis who is newly welcomed as a member of the team. Veteran actor Sylvester Stallone is in a large cameo role as Stakar Ogord, even though I've never been a big fan of Stallone and his movies. Whatever the reason, he did pull a fascinating job.

Viewers will be jettisoned and embrace the world of GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY as they previously have done it in its predecessor. It may not have been as fresh as the last movie, but it's bigger and a more colourful and action-packed sequel. I hope to see it again when it is put to the sales on Blu-ray, DVD, iTunes and Netflix.

Star rating: (9/10) Excellent Movie

Monday, 15 May 2017

Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl Review

Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl

Release Date: 11th September 2003 - Australia

Production Companies 
Walt Disney Pictures (presents)
Jerry Bruckheimer Films (in association with)

Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Australia 

Genre: Action/Adventure 

Rating: M

Runtime: 142 minutes

Budget: $140,000,000

Box Office Gross: $654,264,015

Plot Summary 
The roguish yet charming Captain Jack Sparrow's idyllic pirate life capsizes after his nemesis the wily Captain Barbossa, steals his ship the Black Pearl, and later attacks the town of Port Royal kidnapping the Governor's beautiful daughter Elizabeth. In a gallant attempt to rescue her and recapture the Black Pearl, Elizabeth's childhood friend Will Turner joins forces with Jack. What Will doesn't know is that a cursed treasure has doomed Barbossa and his crew to live forever as the undead.

Johnny Depp - Captain Jack Sparrow 
Orlando Bloom - Will Turner
Keira Knightely - Elizabeth Swann
Geoffrey Rush - Hector Barbossa
Jack Davenport - Norrington
Jonathan Pryce - Governor
Weatherby Swann
Kevin McNally - Joshamee Gibbs
Lee Arenberg - Pintel
Mackenzie Crook - Ragetti
Damian O'Hare - Lt. Gillette
Giles New - Murtogg
Angus Barnett - Mullroy
David Bailie - Cotton
Michael Berry Jr. - Twigg
Isaac C. Singleton Jr. - Bo'sun
Zoe Saldana - Anamaria
Martin Klebba - Marty
Treva Etienne - Koehler
Greg Ellis - Lt. Theodore Groves
Lauren Maher - Scarlett
Vanessa Branch - Giselle 
Brye Cooper - Mallot

Director - Gore Verbinski
Screen Story/Screenplay - Ted Elliott and Terry Rossio
Screen Story - Stuart Beattie and Jay Wolpert
Executive Producer/Unit
Production Manager - Paul Deason
Executive Producer/Unit
Production Manager/Second Unit Director - Bruce Hendricks
Executive Producers - Chad Oman and Mike Stenson
Producer - Jerry Bruckheimer
Historical Advisor - Peter Twist
Production Designer - Brian Morris
Creature Designer - Mark 'Crash' McCreery
Costume Designer - Penny Rose 
Makeup Department Head - Ve Neill
Director of Photography - Dariusz Wolski
Stunt Coordinator - George Marshall Ruge
Sword Master/Additional Sword Trainer - Mark Ivie
Additional Sword Trainer - Bob Anderson
Visual Effects Supervisor - Alex Frisch
Visual Effects Supervisor: ILM - John Knoll 
Visual Effects Consultant - Charles Gibson
Animation Supervisor: ILM - Hal T. Hickel
Film Editors - Stephen E. Rivkin,
Arthur Schmidt and Craig Wood
Soundtrack/Score Producer/Music Editor/
Programmer - Hans Zimmer
Music - Klaus Badelt


2004 Academy Awards
Best Actor in a Leading Role - Johnny Depp (Nominated)
Best Makeup - Ve Neill and Martin Samuel (Nominated)
Best Sound Mixing - Christopher Boyes, David Parker, David E. Campbell and Lee Orloff (Nominated)
Best Sound Editing - Christopher Boyes and George Watters II (Nominated)
Best Visual Effects - John Knoll, Hal T. Hickel, Charles Gibson and Terry D. Frazee (Nominated)

Ahoy there me hearties, it's RadDingo here. You may have guessed that I didn't review any of the PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN movies (save for ON STRANGER TIDES). Now that I am looking forward to seeing the new movie DEAD MAN TELL NO TALES which is soon to be in theatres at the end of May. We'll be looking at the series' first instalment THE CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL before the countdown is over. It was captivating to see a swashbuckling feature that hasn't aged a bit and it never ceases to amaze me. I didn't expect that a film based on a theme park ride at Disneyland would soar as one of the top grossing films of 2003. However, the film was a hidden treasure, formed by an intriguing narrative from the same writing team that were behind SHREK and ALADDIN (click here). Full of action with sword-fight choreography, comedy and an adventurous epic feel with a few supernatural themes to contain the tremendous impact. Director Gore Verbinski could never be thanked enough for bringing such a movie franchise to life. He has also done a very nimble job on the pacing and none of the sequels were used to this proper timing of the original movie.

The performances were superb coming from actors like Johnny Depp who was already perfect for the infamous savvy pirate of Jack Sparrow. He gets away with portraying his character with a hairstyle, a mid-Atlantic cockney accent, etc. He was born to lead his portrayal as it was a huge step-up of being immortalised in his status as a well-known leading actor from Hollywood. Actor Orlando Bloom was the boy-next-door and though he portrays the pirate-in-training swordmaker Will Scarlett in a restraining manner. Keira Knightely was gorgeous as the lovely Elizabeth Swann. Geoffrey Rush chews the scenery when acting as the bloodthirsty blackguard Hector Barbossa in a charismatic over-the-top style. On a surprising note, it was one of the early films for actress Zoe Saldana who is nearing her future big break in STAR TREK (click here) and AVATAR (click here) when she was prominently featured among the supporting cast.

A fun yet majestic high-sea adventure is enough to push THE CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL into a well-regarded sanctuary of modern classics that were in its heyday. I consider this to be my favourite movie that goes without saying as being a must-see before feature.

Star rating: (10/10) Best Movie Ever

Monday, 8 May 2017

The Avengers (1998) Review

The Avengers

Release Date: 5th November 1998 - Australia

Production Companies
Warner Bros. Pictures
Jerry Weintraub Productions

Roadshow Distribution

Genre: Action

Rating: M

Runtime: 89 minutes

Budget: $60,000,000

Box Office Gross: $48,585,416 

Plot Summary
British Ministry agent John Steed, under direction from "Mother", investigates a diabolical plot by arch-villain Sir August de Wynter to rule the world with his weather control machine. Steed investigates the beautiful Doctor Mrs. Emma Peel, the only suspect, but simultaneously falls for her and joins forces with her to combat Sir August.

Ralph Fiennes - John Steed
Uma Thurman - Emma Peel
Sean Connery - Sir August de Wynter
Jim Broadbent - Mother
Eddie Izzard - Bailey
Fiona Shaw - Father
Eileen Atkins - Alice
Keeley Hawes - Tamara
John Wood - Trubshaw
Carmen Ejogo - Brenda
Shaun Ryder - Donovan
Nicholas Woodeson - Dr. Darling
Patrick Macnee - Invisible Jones (Voice) 

Director - Jeremiah S. Chechik
Based on Television Series "The Avengers" - Sydney Newman
Writer - Don MacPherson
Executive Producer - Susan Ekins
Producer - Jerry Weintraub
Production Designer - Stuart Craig
Costume Designer - Anthony Powell
Cinematography - Roger Pratt
Stunt Coordinator - Marc Boyle
Visual Effects Supervisor - Nick Davis
Film Editor - Mick Audsley
Composer: Theme Song - Laurie Johnson
Music - Joel McNeely

Released in 1998, THE AVENGERS (no, not the film from Joss Whedon) was considered to be the worst screen interpretation ever released. It was very lucky that this wasn't based on the famous Marvel comic book series, but it was instead based on a classic British spy-fi television series that wouldn't be recognised by young audiences. It's a travesty that this movie nearly derailed the careers of those who participated its production, namely actors like Sean Connery and Uma Thurman. The lack of background extras, plot holes, severe editing and overall politeness of the chemistry dialogue of Thurman and Ralph Fiennes may have contributed to these criticisms of the movie.

Shame on the producers for casting Connery, the former 007 as the weather-controlling megalomaniac in a movie that shows no loyalty to the source material. He should be ashamed of his performance in this abnormal movie. The part of the villain would have been perfect for Anthony Hopkins, if he had been willing to accept that instead of Connery who did not yet retire from acting after THE AVENGERS until 2003.

The film was not quite ready to renew interest on a classic TV series and actually did no justice for the series as it was so poorly made that if this is your first introduction to THE AVENGERS, it discourages you from wanting to watch the TV series which despite this poor movie is actually quite decent.

Star rating: (2/10) Bad Movie

Monday, 1 May 2017

The Fate of the Furious Review

The Fate of the Furious

Release Date: 12th April 2017 - Australia

Production Companies
Universal Pictures (presents)
Original Film 
One Race Films
Perfect World Pictures
China Film Co.

Universal Pictures Australia 

Genre: Action

Rating: M

Runtime: 136 minutes

Budget: $250,000,000

Box Office Gross: $1,060,321,355 (Worldwide) (This figure may change as new editions earn more money and increase the overall value of the box office gross)

Plot Summary
Now that Dom and Letty are on their honeymoon and Brian and Mia have retired from the game-and the rest of the crew has been exonerated-the globetrotting team has found a semblance of a normal life. But when a mysterious woman seduces Dom into the world of crime he can't seem to escape and a betrayal to those closest to him, they will face trials that will test them as never before.

From the shores of Cuba and the streets of New York City to the icy plains off the arctic Barents Sea, our elite force will crisscross the globe to stop an anarchist from unleashed chaos on the world's stage... and to bring home the man who made them a family.

Vin Diesel - Dominic Toretto 
Jason Statham - Deckard Shaw
Dwayne Johnson - Luke Hobbs
Michelle Rodriguez - Leticia
"Letty" Ortiz
Tyrese Gibson - Roman Pearce
Chris 'Ludacris' Bridges - Tej
Charlize Theron - Cipher
Kurt Russell - Mr. Nobody
Nathalie Emmanuel - Ramsey
Elsa Pataky - Elena
Kristofer Hivju - Rhodes
Scott Eastwood - Little Nobody
Patrick St. Esprit - DS Allan
Janmarco Santiago - Fernado
Luke Hawx - Miller
Tego Calderon - Leo
Don Omar -Santos
Celestino Cornielle - Raldo
Luke Evans - Owen Shaw
Helen Mirren - Madgalene Shaw (Cameo) (Uncredited)

Director - F. Gary Gray
Based on Characters - Gary
Scott Thompson
Writer/Producer - Chris Morgan
Executive Producers - Amanda Lewis and Samantha Vincent
Producers - Vin Diesel and Neal
H. Moritz 
Producer/Unit Production Manager - Michael Fottrell
First Assistant Director/Co-Producer - Cliff Lanning
Production Designer - Bill Brzeski
Costume Designer - Sanja Milkovic Hays
Director of Photography - Stephen F. Windon
Second Unit Director/Stunt Coordinator - Spiro Razatos
Stunt Coordinators - J.J. Perry and Troy Robinson
Special Effects Supervisor - J.D. Schwalm
Visual Effects Supervisors - Kelvin McIlwain,
Jay Burton and Mike Wassel
Film Editors - Paul Rubell and Christian Wagner
Music - Brian Tyler

The eighth instalment of THE FAST AND THE FURIOUS series, THE FATE OF THE FURIOUS was thought it be inferior and would de-accelerate the franchise with the absence of the late actor Paul Walker. The film continues the series need for speed and with two more sequels underway, there's no lessening an impact that started the over-the-top car chases and stunt work. A near adrenaline rush that was not quite facing the articular standards of the predecessors like FURIOUS 7 (click here). It has a storyline that was essentially dark albeit still in a cheesy grin as Vin Diesel's hero turns rogue when he is won over by a vindictive femme fatale. Director F. Gary Gray takes over James Wan's duties after the hype from FURIOUS 7 died down in two years and keeps the formula intact on this one. The excitement of the movie has never faded and it has seemed to get bolder now and then.

The returning actors like Vin Diesel have always been in touch with the chemistry with the late Paul Walker until his sudden death. He is now one of the lead actors of the film sharing with Dwayne Johnson and Michelle Rodriguez as he could not fill in Paul's shoes. Also with co-stars Jason Statham and Kurt Russell being the newest additions to the series as both actors return to their characters as the first is no longer their greatest foe but now is an ally to the good guys. Who is Cipher, the deadliest assassin that we have come across yet as Oscar-winner Charlize Theron dabbles her skills as a thespian to play the bad girl. Helen Mirren makes a surprise cameo appearance as her love for the series has brought her attention in a certain role.

THE FATE OF THE FURIOUS is a semi-decent action blockbuster that almost derailed the quality of the series. It certainly got over with a new threatening villain and dark tone that it was the series' interesting and recent chapter. I highly recommend this feature for those in their teen and mature audiences as well as fans of the FAST AND THE FURIOUS series of films.

Star rating: (7/10) Good Movie

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

The Shawshank Redemption Review

The Shawshank Redemption

Release Date: 15th February 1995 - Australia

Production Companies
Castle Rock Entertainment (presents)

Roadshow Distribution

Genre: Drama

Rating: MA15+ (Not Suitable for Young Children)

Runtime: 142 minutes

Budget: $25,000,000

Box Office Gross: $58,000,000 (Worldwide)

Plot Summary
Andy Dufresne, a New England banker convicted of murdering his wife and her lover, is sent to Shawshank State Prison where he meets Red Redding, a seasoned lifer. Despite twenty years on the inside, the prison bars fail to contain their spirits; and the pair forge an unlikely friendship, one that overcomes pain, suffering and ultimately leads to a chance at freedom.

Tim Robbins - Andy Dufresne
Morgan Freeman - Red Redding
Bob Gunton - Warden Norton
William Sadler - Heywood
Clancy Brown - Captain Hadley
Gil Bellows - Tommy
Mark Rolston - Bogs Diamond
James Whitmore - Brooks Hatlen
Larry Brandenburg - Skeet
Neil Giuntoli - Jigger
Brian Libby - Floyd
David Proval - Snooze
Joseph Ragno - Ernie
Scott Mann - Glenn Quentin

Writer/Director - Frank Darabont
Based on Short Story "Rita Hayworth and The Shawshank Redemption" - Stephen King
Executive Producer - Liz Glotzer 
Executive Producer/Unit Production Manager - David V. Lester 
Producer - Niki Marvin
Production Designer - Terence Marsh
Costume Designer - Elizabeth McBride
Director of Photography - Roger Deakins
Film Editor - Richard Francis-Bruce
Music - Thomas Newman


1995 Academy Awards
Best Picture - Niki Marvin (Nominated)
Best Actor in a Leading Role - Morgan Freeman (Nominated)
Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material Previously Produced or Published - Frank Darabont (Nominated)
Best Cinematography - Roger Deakins (Nominated)
Best Sound - Robert J. Litt, Elliot Tyson, Michael Herbick
and Willie D. Burton (Nominated)
Best Film Editing - Richard Francis-Bruce (Nominated)
Best Music, Original Score - Thomas Newman (Nominated)

THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION was seen and admired by many film buffs, even the website of IMDB rated it as #1 on the top 250 films. A well-renowned cinematic iteration of a book by Stephen King. It easily beats a few movies that were based on his other work like STAND BY ME and MISERY for example. It accomplishes pure significance and love to the modern film industry. The film was poorly-advertised during its release then re-airings on television quickly changed that into a pop-cultural phenomenon. It's not so surprising that SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION was one of the year's best movies that were destined to win the Best Picture Oscar and was snubbed in favour of FORREST GUMP (click here). I also like to point out that THE LION KING (click here) should have had this distinction, if it were nominated. A prison drama about one man who befriends a fellow inmate as they struggle to regain their hope and freedom in a prison run by a corrupt warden. Frank Darabont has never filmed a Hollywood big-budgeted picture and this is his first foray into the motion picture industry. This was his known directorial debut as Frank was moving on to direct other projects that were not yet filmed specifically until later years.

Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman were both handing out their sensational performances in a movie like SHAWSHANK. Their roles as the inmates considering that one is a rogue and the other is a seasoned veteran that are in a friendship which is the heart of the story. It's a crime that none of these two well-known actors won the Best Actor award which goes to Tom Hanks for his role in FORREST GUMP. The actors who take on the roles of corrupt officials like Bob Gunton who was perfect as the awfully corrupt warden. So does Clancy Brown for his supporting role as the ruthless prison guard. The music by Thomas Newman was hauntingly beautiful and moody and without a doubt, is his greatest composition that he has written for a feature film. 

This was a genuinely moving movie which will be known in its most importance as a timeless masterpiece. Age hasn't affected SHAWSHANK as the film was highly regarded and continues to inspire us. Highly recommended for those that were new to Stephen King and will watch it for the first time.

Star rating: (10/10) Best Movie Ever