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Old February 27 2010, 11:14 PM   #254
Harvey
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

Sherlock Holmes [B-]
Men in Black [A]
Up in the Air [A]
Star Trek: The Motion Picture [D+]
I'm Not There [A]
Beyond a Reasonable Doubt (2009) [D-]
American Violet [B ]
Inglourious Basterds [A]
Death at a Funeral [B ]
A Serious Man [A]
The Hurt Locker [A-]
Mad Max 2 (AKA The Road Warrior) [C]
The Book of Eli [C-]
Elegy [B+]
Close Encounters of the Third Kind [A]
The Invention of Lying [B-]
Gamer [C]
Timecrimes [A]
Metropolis [A]
Pandorum [B ]
Raiders of the Lost Ark [A]
Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade [A]
Moon [A]
Fun with Dick and Jane [C]
Sunshine [C]
Stanley Kubrick's The Killing [B+]
Ernest Hemingway's The Killers (1964) [A-]
Ernest Hemingway's The Killers (1946) [B+]
Glengarry Glen Ross [B-]
Gattaca [A]
The Big Chill [ B]
The Producers [A]
Rent [C+]
Blade Runner [A]
My Cousin Vinny [B-]
Zombieland [ B]
Infernal Affairs [A]
The Walker [F]
Starship Troopers [A]
Mrs. Washington Goes to Smith [F]
Altered States [A]
Devil in a Blue Dress [ B]
Renaissance [ B]
District 9 [ B]
The Shawshank Redemption [B+]

I saw this film for the first time a few months ago, and was pretty harsh upon it. I thought it was highly sentimental and no better or worse than Darabont's other unrealistically uplifting period piece, The Majestic. And while I still think those charges are true, upon second viewing I can't help but admit that The Shawshank Redemption is a damn good movie. Yes, it's emotionally manipulative, the actors are completely ageless even though the film is supposed to take place over 19 years (and even further, counting the time it takes Red to be up for parole again), and the period details are more nostalgic trappings than a serious look at prison life of the period, but if you can accept all that, it's a very well-made film. It presents a world that can only exist as a motion picture, and for two hours and twenty-two minutes, it's a lot of fun escaping to that world.

An escapist movie set in a prison? I'm shocked Darabont was able to make that work so well. For that, he deserves praise.
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