quotes are some of the most
moving and inspiring quotes you are likely to find. If you really want
to grasp this
films true genius
then you must sample these amazing Shawshank
The screenplay gives almost every actor at least one or more memorable
lines throughout the film.
by: Frank Darabont
Frank Darabont (screenplay)
Stephen King (short story "Rita Hayworth and Shawshank
- Andy Dufresne
Freeman - Ellis Boyd 'Red' Redding
- Warden Norton
Sadler - Heywood
- Captain Hadley
- Bogs Diamond James
Whitmore - Brooks Hatlen
Mr. Dufresne, describe the confrontation you had
with your wife the night that she was murdered.
It was very bitter. She said she was glad I knew, that she hated all
the sneaking around. And she said that she wanted a divorce in Reno.
And that also is very convenient, isn't it, Mr. Dufresne?
I am innocent of this crime, sir, I find it
decidedly inconvenient that the gun was never found.
see by your file you've served twenty years of
a life sentence.
feel you've been rehabilitated?
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.
There's a con like me in every prison in America, I guess. I'm the guy
who can get it for you. Cigarettes, a bag of reefer if you're partial,
a bottle of brandy to celebrate your kid's high school graduation. Damn
near anything, within reason.
places his bet on Andy]
tall drink of water with the silver spoon up his ass.
When do we eat?
You eat when we say you eat! You piss when we say you piss! You shit
when we say you shit! You sleep when we say you sleep! You maggot-dick,
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
first night's the toughest, no doubt about it. They march you in
naked as the day you were born, skin burning and half blind from that
delousing shit they throw on you, and when they put you in that
cell... and those bars slam home... that's when you know it's for real.
A whole life blown away in the blink of an eye. Nothing left but all
the time in the world to think about it.
understand! I'm not supposed to be here!
neither! They run this place like a fucking prison!
belong here! I want to go home! I want my mother!
I had your mother, she wasn't that great!
Get this tub of shit down to the infirmary. If I hear so
much as a mouse
fart in here the rest of the night I swear by God and sonny Jesus you
will all visit the infirmary. Every last motherfucker in here.
first night in the joint, Andy Dufresne cost me two packs of
cigarettes. He never made a sound.
sizes Andy up]
anybody come at you yet? Anybody get to you yet?
[Andy looks at him in
we all need friends in here. I could be a friend to you.
[Andy walks away]
Hey...hard to get. I like that...
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. Yeah, I think it would be fair to say...I liked Andy from the
Hello. I'm Andy Dufresne.
you know that?
my ear to the ground. Why'd you do it?
didn't, since you ask.
you're gonna fit right in, then. Everyone's innocent in here, don't you
know that? Heywood! What are you in for, boy?
Didn't do it! Lawyer fucked me!
else have you
say you're a
cold fish. They say you think your shit smells sweeter than ordinary.
do you think?
made up my
Well, if it was
a toothbrush I wouldn't ask questions, I'd just quote a price, but then
a toothbrush is a non-lethal object, isn't it?
enough. A rock-hammer is about
eight or nine inches long. Looks like a miniature pickaxe, with
a small sharp pick on one end, and a blunt hammerhead on the other.
I have no
Wait a while. Word gets around. The Sisters have taken quite a likin'
to you. Especially Boggs.
don't suppose it would help if I told them that I'm not homosexual.
are they. You have to be human first. They don't qualify.
I wish I could tell you that Andy fought the good fight, and the
Sisters let him be. I wish I could tell you that, but prison is no
fairy-tale world. He never said who did it, but we all knew. Things
went on like that for awhile - prison life consists of routine, and
then more routine. Every so often, Andy would show up with fresh
bruises. The Sisters kept at him - sometimes he was able to fight 'em
off, sometimes not. And that's how it went for Andy, that was his
routine. I do believe those first two years were the worst for him, and
I also believe that if things had gone on that way, this place would
have got the best of him.
then, in the spring of 1949, the powers that be decided that...
The roof of the license-plate factory needs
I need a dozen volunteers for a week's work. As you know, special
detail carries with it special privledges.
outdoor detail, and May is one damn fine month to be working outdoors.
Hadley. Do you trust your wife?
You're gonna look real funny sucking my dick with no teeth.
You could argue he'd done it to curry favor with the guards. Or, maybe
make a few friends among us cons. Me, I think he did it just to feel
normal again, if only for a short while.
We sat and drank with the sun on our shoulders and felt like free men.
we could have been tarring the roof of one of our own houses. We were
the lords of all creation. As for Andy, he spent that break hunkered
in the shade, a strange little smile on his face, watching us drink his
Rita Hayworth in
the part I really like, when she does that shit with her hair.
Can you get her?
yeah, Andy. I don't have her stuffed down the front of my pants right
now, I'm sorry to say, but I'll get her. Relax!
gonna open my fly and you're gonna swallow what I give ya to swallow.
And after you swallow mine you're gonna swallow Rooster's cause ya done
broke his nose and I think he oughta have something to show for it.
Anything you put in my mouth you're gonna lose.
you don't understand. You do that and I'll put all eight inches of
steel in your ear.
right. But you should know that sudden serious brain injury causes the
victim to bite down hard. In fact, I hear the bite reflex is so strong
they have to pry the victims jaws open with a crowbar.
do you get this shit?
it. You know how to read, you ignorant fuck?
things never happened again after that. The Sisters never laid a finger
on Andy again...and Boggs never walked again. They transferred him to
a minimum security hospital upstate. To my knowledge, he lived out the
rest of his days drinking his food through a straw.
Now there's a game of kings.
a total fuckin' mystery. I hate it.
you? What are you in here for?
same as you.
[shakes his head]
Only guilty man in Shawshank.
[He reaches through the
bars and returns the Bible to Andy.]
I'd hate to deprive you of this. Salvation lies within.
reassigned to you.
know, they told me. Ain't that a kick in the ass? Come on in, I'll give
you the dime tour.
Easy peasy Japanesey.
Brooks held a knife to
don't understand what happened in there.
man's crazy as a rat in a tin shithouse, is what.
Heywood, that's enough out of you!
heard he had you shittin' in your pants!
you knock it off? Brooks ain't no bug. He's just... just
Institutionalized, my ass.
man's been in here fifty years, Heywood. Fifty years! This is all he
knows. In here, he's an important man. He's an educated man. Outside,
he's nothin'! Just a used up con with arthritis in both hands. couldn't
even get a library card if he applied. You see what I'm saying?
I do believe you're talking out of your ass.
what you want. These walls are funny. First you hate 'em, then you get
used to 'em. Enough time passes, you get so you depend on them. That's
Shit. I could never get like that.
yeah? Say that when you been here as long as Brooks has.
right. They send you here for life, and that's exactly what they take.
The part that counts, anyway.
no idea to this day what those two Italian ladies were singing about.
Truth is, I don't want to 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 makes your heart ache because of it. I tell
you, those voices soared higher and farther than anybody in a gray
place dares to dream. It was like some beautiful bird flapped into our
drab little cage and made those walls dissolve away, and for the
briefest of moments, every last man in Shawshank felt free.
I had Mr.
Mozart to keep me company.
and taps his head]
was in here.
[gestures over his heart]
in here. That's the beauty of music. They can't get that from you.
Haven't you ever felt that way about music?
played a mean harmonica as a younger man. Lost interest in it though.
Didn't make much sense in here.
where it makes the most sense. You need it so you don't forget.
that there are places in this world that aren't made out of stone.
That there's something inside...that they can't get to, that they
can't touch. That's yours.
you talking about?
tell you something my friend. Hope is a dangerous thing. Hope can drive
a man insane. It's got no place here. Better get used to the idea.
says here you've served 30 years of a life sentence.
feel you've been rehabilitated?
sir, without a doubt. I can say I'm a changed man. No danger to
society, that's the God's honest truth. Absolutely rehabilitated.
Jesus. When you say it like that...
wonder where it went. I wonder where ten years went.
If they ever
try to trace any of those accounts, they're gonna end up chasing a
figment of my imagination.
I'll be damned. Did I say you were good? Shit, you're a Rembrandt!
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.
don't run the scams Red, I just process the profits. Fine line, maybe,
but I also built that library and used it to help a dozen guys get
their high school diploma. Why do you think the warden lets me do all
you happy and doing the laundry. Money instead of sheets.
cheap. That's the trade-off.
Williams came to Shawshank in 1965 on a two-year stretch for
B&E. That's breaking & entering to you. Cops caught him
sneaking TV sets out the back door of a JC Penney. Young punk. Mr. Rock
and Roll. Cocky as hell.
c'mon, old boys! You're movin' like molasses! Makin' me look bad!
liked him immediately.
and Red are talking about
What's he in here for, anyway?
hell you say!
wouldn't think, lookin' at him. Caught his wife in bed with some golf
pro. Greased 'em both.
How can you be
What? What did you call me?
Obtuse. Is it deliberate?
Son, you're forgetting yourself.
country club will have his old time cards. Records, W-2s with his name
on them. Sir, if I ever get out, I'd never mention what happens here.
I'd be just as indictable as you for laundering that money.
[Norton slaps the table]
Don't you ever mention money to me again, you sorry son of a bitch!Not
in this room, not anywhere!
gets dragged away, kicking
my life. Don't you understand? IT'S MY LIFE!
saying Andy's innocent? I mean for real innocent?
it looks that way.
Sweet Jesus. How long's he been in here?
forty seven, what is that...nineteen years.
Everything stops. Get someone else to run your scams.
Nothing stops. Nothing...or you will do the hardest time there is. No
more protection from the guards. I'll pull you out of that one-bunk
Hilton and cast you down with the Sodomites. You'll think you've been
fucked by a train! And the library? Gone... sealed off, brick-by-brick.
We'll have us a little book barbecue in the yard. They'll see the
flames for miles. We'll dance around it like wild Injuns! You
understand me? Catching my drift?...Or am I being obtuse?
Give him another month to think about it.
My wife used
to say I'm a hard man to know. Like a closed book. Complained
about it all the time. She
was beautiful. God I loved her. I just didn't know how to show it,
that's all. I killed her, Red. I didn't pull the trigger, but I drove
her away. And that's why she died, because of me.
don't make you a murderer. Bad husband, maybe.
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.
[glances to Red]
you'll ever get out of here?
When I got a long white beard and about three marbles left rolling
You know what
the Mexicans say about the Pacific?
say it has no memory. That's where I want to live the rest of my life.
A warm place with no memory.
I don't think you ought to be doing this to
Andy. This is
just shitty pipedreams. I mean, Mexico is way the hell down there and
you're in here, and that's the way it is.
That's the way it is. It's down
there and I'm in here. I guess it comes down to a simple choice,
really. Get busy living or get busy dying.
1966, 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 used to think it would take
six-hundred years to tunnel under the wall with it. Old Andy did it in
less than twenty. Oh, Andy loved geology. I guess it appealed to his
meticulous nature. An ice age here, million years of mountain building
there. Geology is the study of pressure and time. That's all it takes
really, pressure, and time. That, and a big god-damned poster. Like I
said, in prison a man will do anything to keep his mind occupied. It
turns out Andy's favorite hobby was totin' his wall through the
exercise yard, a handful at a time. I guess after Tommy was killed, he
decided he had been here just about long enough. Andy did like he was
told, buffed those shoes to a high mirror shine. The guard simply
didn't notice. Neither did I...I mean, seriously, how often do you
really look at a mans shoes? Andy crawled to freedom through five
hundred yards of shit smelling foulness I can't even imagine, or maybe
I just don't want to. Five hundred yards...that's the length of five
football fields, just shy of half a mile.
Dufresne, who crawled through a river of shit and came out clean on
the other side.
I want him found. Not tomorrow, not after breakfast, now!
It's a miracle! Man up and vanished like a fart in the wind!
Norton: This is a conspiracy, that's what it is.
One...big...damn conspiracy! And everyone's in on it, including her!
[throws a rock at
poster, the rock goes right through it and they hear it clattering.
Norton puts his arm through the torn poster and rips it away from the
wall, revealing Andy's escape tunnel]
Norton finds the bible in his safe after Andy escapes and finds the
message Andy left for him]
Dear Warden, You were right. Salvation lay within.
couple of pages to find the outline of the rock
hammer that was hidden in the Book of Exodus within the Bible, and then
drops it on the floor in shock]
Warden Norton shoots
himself in his office]
I'd like to think that the last thing that went through his head, other
than that bullet, was to wonder how the hell Andy Dufresne ever got the
best of him.
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. Still, the place
you live in is that much more drab and empty that they're gone. I guess
I just miss my friend.
Boyd Redding, your files say you've served 40 years of a life sentence.
Do you feel you've been rehabilitated?
Rehabilitated? Well, now let me see. You know, I don't have any idea
what that means.
it means that you're ready to rejoin society...
what you think it means, sonny. To me it's just a made up
word. A politician's word, so young fellas like yourself can wear a
suit and a tie, and have a job. What do you really want to know? Am I
sorry for what I did?
not a day goes by I don't feel regret. Not because I'm in here, or
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 and 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. Rehabilitated? It's just a bullshit word. So
you go on and stamp your form, sonny, and stop wasting my time. Because
to tell you the truth, I don't give a shit.
years I been asking permission to piss. I can't squeeze a drop without
is a harsh truth to face. No way I'm gonna make it on the outside. All
I do anymore is think of ways to break my parole. Terrible thing, to
live in fear. Brooks Hatlen knew it. Knew it all too well. 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.
Red, hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing
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. 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.
to top of page
Total Quotes: 61