I wanted to start this off right with a movie that’ll set the tone for the entire Ultimate Rankatron. There’s a few on the list I’ve never seen before so I didn’t want to begin with one of those in case it sucked and it tainted the Rank. You can’t taint the Rank! I might lose interest and get off on the wrong foot.
I wanted a movie that can surprise the uninitiated and that had held up well over time. A movie that has now been deemed under-rated in its day but has surpassed some other movies that came out at that time as far as impact.
I bring you The Shawshank Redemption.
Some cool stats:
- Starring Tim Robbins, and Morgan Freeman.
- Directed and adapted by Frank Durabont (he directed The Green Mile and is the executive producer of the amazing-looking AMC Zombie TV series “The Walking Dead” upcoming Halloween 2010).
- Based on a Stephen King short story called “Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption”
- The movie bombed at the box office that year (only pulled in $18mil to compensate a $36mil budget)
- Nominated for 7 Academy awards in 1994 (Best Picture, Best Actor – Morgan Freeman, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Cinematography, Best Editing, Best Original Score, Best Sound Mixing) but didn’t win a single one because of Forrest Gump…thanks Forrest!
- The role of Andy Dufresne (Tim Robbins) was offered to Tom Hanks but he turned it down because of his role as Forrest Gump…thanks again Forrest!
- Other actors up for the same part: Kevin Costner (shudder), Tom “Show me the laundered money!” Cruise, Nicholas Cage (you’re not getting on my list!), and Charlie Sheen (meh.)
- For the role of Red, consideration was given to Clint Eastwood (could’ve pulled it off…sort of), Harrison Ford (NO!), Paul Newman (try his salad dressing!), and Robert Redford (he’s got Red in his name) before Morgan Freeman earned it.
If you want to see the actual trailer, visit my original Ultimate Rankatron post and click on the movie title.
In the meantime, if you’ve seen the movie already or don’t mind being spoiled knowing the plot, check out this dope vid yo!
If you haven’t seen this movie anytime in the last 16 years, Family Guy will bring you up to speed spoiler free:
All I’ll say before I get started is that my original watch of this movie wasn’t in theatres. I got caught up in the Forrest Gump/Pulp Fiction hooplah of ’94 and this wasn’t even on my radar. I watched it for the first time a few years later and I was an instant fan. Like a fine wine, it ages well.
With that said I’ll put my foam critic hat on and try to find a chink in this movie armour, I’ll be back in a few days with my review.