Reading Log Essay

Submitted By hodsonj
Words: 985
Pages: 4

Reading Log
The film “
The Shawshank Redemption
” directed by Frank Darabont is an allegory which illustrated to me the importance of integrity through the life of Andy Dufresne. The importance of an individual’s integrity was very important in the film as it was contrasted throughout by
Darabont. This enabled me to see that those who have integrity, as well as hope, loyalty and perseverance can get through even the most horrible circumstances, whereas those who do not will eventually reach the demise or fate they deserve. Darabont uses the plot and especially the reactions and final outcomes of the main characters to show the effect of integrity. At the beginning of the film, Andy Dufresne is wrongfully convicted of killing his wife and her lover, and is sentenced to a double life term at the
Shawshank State Penitentiary. His initial reaction to this injustice surprised me and made me see the true integrity of Andy. Society would expect Andy DuFresne to challenge the decision in a fit of rage and condemnation, but instead all a mid shot captures is a shocked look followed by a look of acceptance on his face.These actions made me understand that even though I may disagree with a decision, even one as large as this, if I maintain my integrity and the hope that justice will be served, good things will come my way eventually. Although the majority of the film illustrated the importance of maintaining one’s integrity,
Andy’s adherence to his integrity also gave him the inner strength to remain hopeful, loyal and to be able to persevere despite the horrible circumstances. His unwavering perseverance is demonstrated when he continually sends weekly letters for six years to get more books for the prison library. He also negotiates with Hadley to get cold beers for his fellow cons when they are tarring a roof and persists to get opera music played through the entire prison. The effect of these demonstrations showed me that the concept of steadfast integrity spreads further than honesty and a respect for moral principles. I could see that such was the integrity of
Andy, he attempted to pass on his unwavering hope, loyalty and perseverance to his fellow prisoners. He did this so the prisoners with little to live for including Ellis Boyd “Red” Redding could build a sense of hope on which they could build the motivation to live, and so Andy could build on his own hope. When I think about this in the real world, I wonder why people like Andy Dufresne are not more prevalent in the world we live in today. Darabont the director has influenced me to encourage the concept of integrity. Those who have superior moral principles and honesty should teach it to others, so that these people can gain integrity and the teachers can build on their own.

Darabont does however demonstrate an injustice of superior integrity throughout the film. This was shown to me through the contrast between Andy Dufresne and the prison warden
Samuel Norton. Andy who has far superior integrity as described before is sent to Shawshank despite being innocent of the crimes he is found guilty of. This act of injustice is contrasted to when the evil warden in an act which lacked any integrity, commits suicide later, when the police approach his office to arrest him. This angered me because despite a life of corruption, dishonesty and a lack of moral and ethical principles, by killing himself he got the cheap way out and avoided his deserved punishment. Andy did not even question his unfair conviction, showing his integrity, but was handed a double life sentence at Shawshank, and 19 years of hell under the supervision of the warden. To many, these two outcomes for each character