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Realistic Portrayal of Prison Life in Movies based on Stephen Kings Novels - Essay Example

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The Shawshank Redemption is one of the films that are regarded close to realism of portraying life in prison. Shawshank Redemption was based on the novel of Stephen King titled “Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption”. …
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Realistic Portrayal of Prison Life in Movies based on Stephen Kings Novels
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Download file to see previous pages The film was directed by Frank Darabont and was portrayed by Tim Robbins as the main protagonist, Andy Dufrasne, and Morgan Freeman as Ellis Redding. It was shown in theatres in 1994 and won several awards including Academy Awards in the same year. (Felchner 2010)
Summary. Andy Dufrasne was wrongly convicted for the murder of his wife and her lover due to a strong evidence planted against him. He was sentenced life at Maine’s Shawshank State Prison. Behind bars, he was dealing with the harsh reality of life in a prison cell brought upon by many hardships and cruelties inside; prison rape, riot, and warden brutality to name some. While dealing all with these, he befriended with Ellis Redding whose parole application was rejected. Warden Norton had Andy involved in his money laundering act in exchange of private cell and to maintain his work as librarian in the library cell. After some years, a newly incarcerated Tommy Williams was almost the key to prove the innocence of Andy, yet Norton managed to have him killed as he was afraid that if Andy will be freed, he might expose him. Eventually, Andy managed to escape the prison cell by digging a tunnel in the wall of his cell covered with poster of Raquel Welch. After escaping he exposed Norton and his company with his money laundering to the local newspaper. Upon the day of his arrest, Norton committed suicide. As an epilogue, Redding was finally given parole after 40 years in the prison. He remembered the instruction of Andy to him when they were yet in the prison together. In Buxton, he found cash and note from Andy. The two friends were reunited at the beach of Mexico, even it costs Redding violating his parole. Prison Rape. Rare in the films that tackle prison life to underscore prison rape, it is either avoided or portrayed in subtle tone. In Shawshank Redemption, prison rape was played up and tackled its sensitive nature through the characters. “The Sisters,” the group of prisoners in the film, who were performing the rape among their inmates, had long been a watchful foe of Andy as for years he was being desired by their leader. They only stopped when Andy fought back and had the warden had threatened the Sisters. In the film it can be seen how psychologically disturbed Andy was after the first attempts of the Sisters to him. In 2004, there were 554 inmates of Texas Prison reported as victims of prison rape, while there were some 2,000 inmates who were infected with STD from performing prison rape (Houston Chronicle 2005). The disturbance that projected by Tim Robbins character was realistically told as prison rape brought psychological terror to its victims, leading to suicide if not treated well (Knowles 1999). Presently, there were reports that in the over-all United States that the total percentage of raped victims is 1.91% in the 2.3 million inmates. In total number this is presumably around 43,800 inmates. This is also the estimated total number of inmates who probably had suicidal tendencies or being disturbed with psychological terror as effect of the prison rape (Bureau of Justice 2010). Other Issues. Police brutality and abuse of power of officers were also depicted in the film as experienced by its characters mainly by Andy, particularly Warden Norton’s manipulation to Andy for being the front guy of his money laundering act. Inmate killing was also tackled in order to preserve the interest of those in higher power in the expense ...Download file to see next pages Read More
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