30 Shawshank Redemption Quotes Which Are Filled With Inspiring Life Lessons

Life is but a hope.

Nashrah Ansari

Dec 29, 2020|7 min read


The Shawshank Redemption is a period prison drama with an old-fashioned theatrical that centres on maintaining Hope and faith in adversity, starring Tim Robbins as Andy Dufresne, wrongfully convicted of killing his wife, her lover and serving two life sentences. 

The highlight of The Shawshank Redemption is, without a doubt, Morgan Freeman's portrayal as fellow lifer Red Redding, faultlessly narrating the movie filled with deep and vital connotations about Hope throughout the film. 

The Shawshank Redemption is a movie that discloses the harsh reality of prison life. It illustrates the evolution of emotions and the human experience in prison cells, where one can quickly lose Hope. However, we foresee a great friendship and a strong bond between Andy and Red depicting the message that Hope can heal. 

It managed to take up 142 minutes of screen time for a story that is 110 pages in writing. The fluidity of the story is tremendous, and it's worth watching for two hours and some.

The Shawshank redemption quotes have not only passed but broke the test of time. It inspires Hope to survive many good things: knowledge, art, justice, and that walls cannot confine you and do not define you.

1) 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?

Andy was very dispassionate and tight-lipped. This line explains how he got to Shawshank in the first place for a crime he didn't commit. At his trial, the jury loses at his aloofness, and Red quotes the following.

2) 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 that they're gone. I guess I just miss my friend. 

It is impossible to make the Shawshank redemption quotes listicle without this quote. This quote is one of the most heartbreaking yet poignant lines in the film, which illustrates that we can let someone go, but there's still the sense of sadness knowing that they are gone. 

3) 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. 

4)  That's the beauty of music. They can't get that from you.

After completing his days in solidarity for playing the opera for the entire prison, Andy quotes the following to his friend Red. Here, music is the expression of Hope through the medium of sound.

5) Hope is a dangerous thing. Hope can drive a man insane.

No list of quotes from The Shawshank Redemption would be complete without this masterpiece.

6) Fear can hold you, prisoner. Hope can set you free.

Despite the slim chances, Andy doesn't let the pessimism get him down and invests in his dreams of getting out of the Shawshank and making his way to Pacific.

7) All men die. Not every man truly lives. 

8) Prison life consists of routine, and then more routine.

This Shawshank Redemption quote outlines the importance of routine. Yes, routine itself can imprison you by its very nature, but consistent and repeated valuable actions are necessary. Here, it suggests the monotony of routine.

9) I don't have to listen to rumours about a man when I can judge him for myself.

Ignorance is judging someone from the rumours that you hear; rumours are often half-truths. The message is clear that never judge someone by the opinion of another.

10) Salvation lies within.

It would help if you did not let yourself be the victim of the situation. You have to begin to bridge the gap between where you are and where you want to be.

11) Every man's got a breaking point.

Despite the injustices Andy has encountered in Shawshank and gone through solitary confinement at the warden's hands, Andy maintains the 'hope' that he'll survive his misery and ultimately win his freedom.  

12) They Send You Here For Life, And That's Exactly What They Take.

This Shawshank redemption quote sums up that whether a person is guilty or innocent if a person spends enough time in prison, they lose their identity, and by then, even release from prison leaves nothing but the broken shell of a man.

13) A whole life blown away in the blink of an eye. Nothing left but all the time in the world to think about it.

14) The World Went And Got Itself In A Big Damn Hurry.

The most significant thing that we commonly take for granted is TIME. Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.

15) Geology is the study of pressure and time. That's all it takes. Pressure and time.

This line is my top pick of all the Shawshank Redemption quotes. Here Red is talking about Andy's interest in stone carving and how making them involves geological changes: a combination of pressure and time. I suppose we can achieve success in anything we do by applying persistent effort over time.

16) Prison is no fairy-tale world.

Red states knowingly that Andy must fend off fellow inmates who physically want to cause him harm and to adapt to the vindictive warden of Shawshank prison. 

17) That's where I want to live the rest of my life. A warm place with no memory.

Andy says this to Red about an island in the Pacific Ocean. This line implies a particular dream of his own, a fresh and warm start for his life after getting out of prison one day.  

18) In prison, a Man Will Do Almost Anything to Keep His Mind Occupied.

Replacing the word 'prison' with 'lockdown' will make this Shawshank redemption quote relevant in today's global environment.  

19) Bad Luck, I Guess. It Floats Around.

20) He always fought, that's what I remember. He fought because he knew if he didn't fight, it would make it that much easier not to fight the next time.

These lines tell us about Andy's fighting spirit and teach us to fight for the right thing, even if odds seem to be against us.

21) If you've come this far, maybe you're willing to come a little further.

This quote encourages Red to continue a path that Andy had guided him to take. He needs to continue a little further to live a better life. 

22) There's Not A Day Goes By I Don't Feel Regret.

In his third time going for parole, Red delivers an honest answer about how his regret is more about how his life has passed by, and all he is looking for now is not rehabilitation but redemption.

23) I Tell You Those Voices Soared Higher And Farther Than Anybody In A Gray Place Dares To Dream.

This Shawshank redemption quotes how the prisoner felt a moment of blissful freedom.

24) Same ol' shit, different day.

Oh shit, here we go again.  

25) The Funny Thing Is, On The Outside I Was An Honest Man.

Prison does that to a person. Anyone who goes in guilty or innocent will learn how to be a criminal by the time they are out. 

26) I'm Telling You, These Walls Are Funny. First, you hate 'em, and then you get used to 'em. After long enough, you get, so you depend on 'em. That's institutionalized.

Red contemplates what it means to be institutionalized, that one becomes so accustomed to a prison environment that people fear true freedom and find a measure of comfort in the prison's lack of freedom.

27) Andy Dufresne - who crawled through a river of shit and came out clean on the other side.

28) Remember Red, hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.

The movie's central message is the power of Hope- there is light at the end of the tunnel despite all of that darkness.

29) 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.

The last lines of The Shawshank Redemption might be the most beautiful in the entire film. The quote delivers a cathartic moment of happiness, peace, and eventually, redemption.

30) Get Busy Living, Or Get Busy Dying.

This Shawshank redemption quote might be the one line that anyone, even people who haven't watched the film, has picked up. The proper way is to live, not to exist. It would be best if you never waste your time; instead, use it.

The Shawshank Redemption is a story of friendship, hope, and struggle against the corrupt prison, filled with the identically dressed prisoners, breathing a stale air of endurance is haunting and inspiring. Although the movie is slow at the box office, it is generally considered one of the best American films of all-time. It's a story about finding hope in the least hopeful places and never giving up on life when it seems brutal and unreasonable. The Shawshank redemption quotes offer inspiring life lessons to be learned to feel a sense of salvation and abundant hope for life.

The ending wraps the story up in a meaningful and memorable way, with winds of freedom rising across the ocean. This masterpiece results from the perfect direction, acting, screenplay, Stephen King's writing.  Great movies keep on living with us, and so do the inspiring lessons we learn from their embrace. 

The Shawshank redemption shows us the significant task of life to develop and maintain a positive mindset to manage any circumstances, adversity, or disappointment in our lives and to have hope even in the most exceedingly awful of times. Never lose trust in hope. As Peter Jackson once said, Pain is temporary, film is forever!

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Nashrah Ansari

I am passionate about writing and love reading poems and novels. Apart from that, I also love getting lost in fictional worlds, for a while since I don't have to deal with my dilemmas. I firmly believe that every upcoming writer should be allowed to represent themselves. I’m so thankful to feedin... read more



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