50+ The Shawshank Redemption Quotes: Timeless Words from the Classic Film
The Shawshank Redemption is a classic film that explores themes of hope, friendship, and redemption. These themes, along with the enduring human spirit and the power of friendship, have made the film a beloved and enduring classic.
The following quotes from The Shawshank Redemption capture the wisdom and resilience of its characters and have become timeless words that continue to inspire and resonate with audiences around the world.
- That’s where I want to live the rest of my life — a warm place with no memory.
- Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.
- Let me tell you something, my friend. Hope is a dangerous thing. Hope can drive a man insane.
- Fear can hold you prisoner. Hope can set you free.
- If you’ve come this far, maybe you’re willing to come a little further.
- I have to remind myself that some birds aren’t meant to be caged. Their feathers are just too bright. And when they fly away, the part of you that knows it was a sin to lock them up does rejoice. But still, the place you live in is that much more drab and empty than they’re gone. I guess I just miss my friend.
- I hope I can make it across the border. I hope to see my friend and shake his hand. I hope the pacific is as blue as it has been in my dreams. I hope.
- All I want is to be back where things make sense. Where I won’t have to be afraid all the time. Only one thing stops me. A promise I made to Andy.
- I believe in two things: discipline and the Bible. Here you’ll receive both. Put your trust in the lord. Your ass belongs to me. Welcome to Shawshank.
- It goes back to what I said about andy wearing his freedom like an invisibility coat, about how he never really developed a prison mentality. His eyes never got that dull look.
- We sat and drank with the sun on our shoulders and felt like free men.
- I have no idea to this day what those two Italian ladies were singing about. Truth is, I don’t wanna know. Some things are best left unsaid. I’d like to think they were singing about something so beautiful it can’t be expressed in words, and it makes your heart ache because of it. I tell you those voices soared, higher and farther than anybody in a grey place dares to dream. It was like some beautiful bird flapped into our drab little cage and made these walls dissolve away, and for the briefest of moments, every last man in Shawshank felt free.
- In prison, a man will do most anything to keep his mind occupied.
- A whole life blown away in the blink of an eye. Nothing left but all the time in the world to think about it.
- I understand you’re a man who knows how to get things.
- I wish I could tell you Andy fought the good fight. I wish I could tell you that… But prison is no fairy tale world.
- I have trouble sleepin’ at night. I have bad dreams like I’m falling. I wake up scared.
- That first night in the joint, Andy Dufresne cost me two packs of cigarettes. He never made a sound.
- I could see why some of the boys took him for snobby. He had a quiet way about him, a walk and a talk that just wasn’t normal around here. He strolled, like a man in a park without a care or a worry in the world, like he had on an invisible coat that would shield him from this place.
- How can you be so obtuse?
- They send you here for life, and that’s exactly what they take. The part that counts, anyway.
- There’s not a day that goes by I don’t feel regret. Not because I’m in here, because you think I should. I look back on the way I was then: a young, stupid kid who committed that terrible crime. I want to talk to him. I want to try to talk some sense to him, tell him the way things are. But I can’t. that kid’s long gone, and this old man is all that’s left. I got to live with that.
- I find I’m so excited, I can barely sit still or hold a thought in my head. I think it’s the excitement only a free man can feel, a free man at the start of a long journey whose conclusion is uncertain.
- Yes, sir. Absolutely. I’ve learned my lesson. I can honestly say I’m a changed man. I’m no longer a danger to society. That’s the God’s honest truth. No doubt about it.
- Most new fish come close to madness the first night. Somebody always breaks down crying… The only question is, who’s it going to be? It’s as good a thing to bet on as any, I guess. I had my money on Andy Dufresne.
On the Human Spirit
- Sometimes it takes me a while to remember where I am… I guess I’m too old for that sort of nonsense anymore. I don’t like it here. I’m tired of being afraid all the time. I’ve decided not to stay. I doubt they’ll kick up any fuss. Not for an old crook like me.
- Every man has his breaking point.
- You need it so you don’t forget. Forget that there are places in the world that aren’t made out of stone. That there’s a – there’s a – there’s something inside that’s yours, that they can’t touch.
- It’s my life. Don’t you understand? It’s my life!
- What was right with him he’d only give you a little at a time. What was wrong with him he kept bottled up inside.
On Finding Humor in the Face of Struggle
- The world went and got itself in a big damn hurry.
- I like to think the last thing that went through his head other than that bullet was how the hell that Andy Dufresne got the best of him.
- I’m telling you, these walls are funny. First, you hate them. Then you get used to them. enough time passes, it gets so you depend on them. That’s institutionalized.
- Bad luck, I guess. It floats around. it’s got to land on somebody. It was my turn, that’s all. I was in the path of the tornado. I just didn’t expect the storm would last as long as it has.
- The funny thing is, on the outside, I was an honest man. Straight as an arrow. I had to come to prison to be a crook.
- Andy Dufresne – who crawled through a river of s*** and came out clean on the other side.
- I had Mr. Mozart to keep me company…[he points and taps his head] it was in here. [and he gestures over his heart] and in here. That’s the beauty of music. They can’t get that from you. Haven’t you ever felt that way about music?
- Andy Dufresne escaped from Shawshank prison. All they found of him was a muddy set of prison clothes, a bar of soap, and an old rock hammer, damn near worn down to the nub. I remember thinking it would take a man six hundred years to tunnel through the wall with it. Old Andy did it in less than twenty.
- Lord, it’s a miracle! A man up and vanished like a fart in the wind.
- I must admit I didn’t think much of Andy first time I laid eyes on him; looked like a stiff breeze would blow him over. That was my first impression of the man.
- Thirty years. Jesus, when you say it like that…you wonder where it went.
- Everybody’s innocent in here.
- The man likes to play chess; let’s get him some rocks.
- We trust this will fill your needs. We now consider the matter closed. please stop sending us letters.
- Prison life consists of routine, and then more routine.
- This is Mr. Hadley, captain of the guards. I’m Mr. Norton, the warden. You are convicted felons. That’s why they sent you to me. Rule number one – no blasphemy. I’ll not have the lord’s name taken in vain in my prison. The other rules you’ll figure as you go along. Any questions?
- I don’t waste time on losers, Tommy.
- I’d hate to deprive you of this. Salvation lies within.
- I guess it comes down to a simple choice, really. Get busy livin’ or get busy dyin’. That’s goddamn right.
- You strike me as a particularly icy and remorseless man, Mr. Dufresne. It chills my blood just to look at you. By the power vested in me by the state of Maine, I hereby order you to serve two life sentences, back to back. One for each of your victims. So be it.
Shawshank Redemption Book Quotes
- How much work went into creating those two pieces? Hours and hours after lights out, I knew that first the chipping and shaping, and then the almost endless polishing and finishing with those rock-blankets.
- He always fought back, and as a result, he did his time in solitary. But don’t think solitary was the hardship for Andy that it was for some men.
- I don’t have to listen to rumors about a man when I can judge him for myself.
- I have no idea to this day what those two Italian ladies were singing about. Truth is, I don’t want to know. Some things are better left unsaid. I’d like to think they were singing about something so beautiful, it can’t be expressed in words, and it makes your heart ache because of it
- Writing about yourself seems to be a lot like sticking a branch into clear river water and rolling up the muddy bottom.
- Andy was the part of me they could never lock up, the part of me that will rejoice when the gates finally open for me and I walk out in my cheap suit with my twenty dollars of mad money in my pocket. That part of me will rejoice no matter how old and broken and scared the rest of me is.
- Anyway, as the old barrelhouse song says, My God, how the money rolled in. Norton must have subscribed to the old Puritan notion that the best way to figure out which folks God favors is by checking their bank accounts.
About The Movie – The Shawshank Redemption
This 1994 film tells the story of Andy Dufresne, a young man who is wrongfully convicted of murder and sentenced to life in prison at Shawshank State Penitentiary.
Despite the bleak circumstances, Andy is able to find hope and purpose in his new home, thanks in large part to his friendship with fellow inmate Ellis Boyce, also known as Red.
Together, they navigate the challenges of prison life and work toward their own redemption. With its themes of hope, friendship, and the enduring human spirit, The Shawshank Redemption has become a beloved classic that continues to inspire audiences around the world.
About the Character – Andy Dufresne
Played by actor Tim Robbins, Andy Dufresne is a complex and multifaceted character in the film ‘The Shawshank Redemption.’ On the surface, he appears to be a quiet and reserved man who is resigned to his fate as a prisoner.
However, as the film progresses, we see that Andy is actually a strong and determined individual who refuses to let his circumstances define him. He is an intelligent and resourceful man who is able to use his skills and talents to help those around him, including his fellow inmates and the prison staff.
Andy’s friendship with Red is a key part of his character, as it helps him to find purpose and meaning in his life. Through his interactions with Red and other characters, we see that Andy is a deeply empathetic and compassionate person who is able to see the humanity in others, even in the harsh and unforgiving world of prison.
Despite the many challenges he faces, Andy remains hopeful and optimistic, and his determination and resilience ultimately lead him to his own redemption.
About the Character – Ellis Boyd ‘Red’ Redding
Played by actor Morgan Freeman Ellis Boyd ‘Red’ Redding is a well-developed character in the film ‘The Shawshank Redemption.’ Red is a convicted murderer who has been serving a life sentence at Shawshank State Penitentiary for over 40 years.
Despite the long years of imprisonment, Red has maintained his sense of humor and his ability to see the humanity in others. He is a wise and level-headed man who is respected by his fellow inmates and serves as a mentor and friend to Andy Dufresne.
Red is able to see the potential in Andy and helps him find purpose and meaning in his life. Through his friendship with Andy, Red is able to find his own redemption and hope for a better future.
Red’s character is able to adapt to the challenges of prison life and make the most of his circumstances. He is a testament to the resilience and strength of the human spirit.
About the Director – Frank Darabont
Frank Darabont is a Hungarian-American filmmaker who is best known for his work as a director, writer, and producer. He is the director of the critically acclaimed film ‘The Shawshank Redemption,’ which was released in 1994.
Darabont began his career as a writer, selling his first script in 1985. He went on to write and produce several films and television shows, including ‘The Blob,’ ‘The Fly II,’ and ‘The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles.’
In 1992, Darabont made his directorial debut with the horror film ‘The Shawshank Redemption,’ which was a commercial and critical success. He has since directed several other films, including ‘The Green Mile’ (1999), ‘The Majestic’ (2001), and ‘The Mist’ (2007).
Darabont is known for his ability to bring complex and emotional stories to life on the screen, and his films are often praised for their strong characters and compelling themes.
About the Original Novella – Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption
‘Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption’ is a novella by Stephen King that was published in 1982 as part of the collection ‘Different Seasons.’ It was later adapted into the film ‘The Shawshank Redemption,’ which was released in 1994.
The novella tells the story of Andy Dufresne, a man who is wrongfully convicted of murder and sent to Shawshank State Penitentiary. While in prison, Andy befriends Ellis Boyd, also known as Red, a fellow inmate who helps him to navigate the challenges of life behind bars. Together, they work towards their own redemption and find hope in the face of despair.
‘Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption’ is a powerful and moving story that explores themes of friendship, hope, and the enduring human spirit. It has become a classic of modern literature and continues to be widely read and celebrated by readers around the world.
About the Writer – Stephen King
Stephen King is a bestselling author who is known for his horror, suspense, and fantasy novels. He has written more than 60 novels, many of which have been adapted into successful films, television shows, and stage productions.
King was born in Portland, Maine in 1947 and grew up in a working-class family. He began writing at a young age and published his first short story, ‘The Glass Floor,’ in 1967. He went on to write numerous novels, including ‘Carrie,’ ‘The Shining,’ and ‘The Stand,’ which became bestsellers and established him as a leading figure in the horror genre.
In 1982, King published the novella ‘Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption,’ which was later adapted into the film ‘The Shawshank Redemption.’ His works have been translated into numerous languages and have sold millions of copies worldwide, making him one of the most successful and influential authors of his generation.
In conclusion, The Shawshank Redemption is a film that has touched the hearts of millions of people around the world. Its themes of hope, friendship, and redemption are universal and timeless, and its characters are complex and relatable.
The quotes from the film featured in this article showcase the wisdom and resilience of its characters and serve as a reminder of the power of the human spirit to overcome adversity and find meaning in even the most difficult of circumstances. The Shawshank Redemption will continue to inspire and move audiences for generations to come.