Wednesday, January 02, 2008

The Green Mile


Sometimes you watch a film and you just have to tell someone about it. You want to share your discovery with them so that they can experience what you have experienced, see what you have seen and perhaps take something from it like you have.

I watched 'The Green Mile' on New Years Eve. It is something I have been meaning to get around to doing for some time and a whole evening, a comfy sofa and bottle of wine seemed a great time to break the seal on the plastic wrapping covering the DVD I had purchased some time before. I must admit that I had put off watching it, a film about inmates on death row seemed quite depressing, however, this film did not leave me feeling depressed. Don't get me wrong. I was not skipping around the house full of joy either but rather it left me with that dual feeling of happiness and sadness and a sense of wonder which is rare to experience outside childhood.

It is rare for a film to make me cry, and even rarer for the same film to manage it twice. It's not that I'm hard hearted, I just don't connect with the over sentimental greetings card type schmaltz you get in some films. This film however was truly touching and endearing. It took me on a roller coaster of emotion. It was thought provoking. It slowly draws you in and captivates you and horrifies you and once it is finished you are sorry it has had to end and somehow three hours of your life has passed.

It is set in a prison in America during the depression and features the lives (and deaths) of the inmates there and the guards. The story unfolds through the memories of one of the guards which centres on a particular inmate who has been convicted for killing two little girls. It soon transpires though that there is more to this inmate than we first perceive and soon strange things happen on the Green Mile, which is the strip of lime linoleum that the prisoners must walk to the chair.

The film is directed by Frank Darabont who also directed 'The Shawshank Redemption' (another favourite of mine) and he once again does a superb job of directing this story. The film allows us to explore mortality, question morality and allows us to draw our own conclusions about the human condition. The characters are sometimes likeable, sometimes, despised and sometimes a bit of both and bought to life through marvellous acting. The script, cinematography and the score were all wonderful. There is very little I would change about this film, (such as where the film ends) but in the end these things are personal. This film is a great film. If this all seems too good to be true then watch it for yourself if you haven't already. I defy anyone not to be moved even if it doesn't make your top ten all time favourites. It has made my list though.

16 comments:

R. Sherman said...

I remember reading the novel in serial form and enjoyed it. I think the movie version is very close to the novel and certainly worth a viewing. The subtext about "setting things 'a-right'" gives one pause.

Cheers.

craziequeen said...

ooh, one of my favourite movies of all time......

The book is fantastic, a merged series of novellas in truth, and the film accurately captures the feeling of the book.

One even felt sympathy and pity for the obnoxious Delacroix (stunningly played by the late and much lamented Michael Jeter).

Wow - thinking about this has brought back little flash images from the film to mind...I will have to go and watch it again!

cq

Maria said...

I loved the film and my definition of a good movie is how long the feelings from it linger on. The Green Mile was on my mind for quite awhile.

Now from other comments here, I think I will have to find the book and read it.

I cam by your blog via Kenju

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

Oh I am so glad you wrote about this film, dear B-K...It is a film I Love, Too! Beautiful renfered, in every way....like a Great Great Painting--It is a work of "art", isn't it? I really must rent it and watch it again....It used to be on my Movie Channels qyute a bit some years ago...But it hasn't been on for a long time.
Dear Dear Michael Jeter...The Most Incredibly TAKENTED Michael Jeter...(He was my neighbor, living at the top of my street, until his untimely death....)
And I admire Frank Darabount Soooo very very much....A good friend is now a Full Producer with his company--She was an Associate, I believe, on this film...Anna Garduno....I have never met him, but many people I know have and everyone admires HIS talent tremendously....I too LOVED The Shawshank Redemption...I love the time he takes to develop the projects he is committed to and is in love with...! A TRUE Filmaker!

kenju said...

I have avoided this one because I heard there was a lot of violence in it. Maybe I'll seek this one out too, since if everyone else loved it - I probably will too.

(Maria, thanks for coming by to see Bobkat!)

Melody said...

I love this movie. Did you ever get the series of books? I remember buying them and I remember crying too!! Have you ever seen the movie 'Of Mice and Men', another novel turned into a movie staring Gary Sinese? If not, try and get your hands on a copy...

Mar said...

I haven't seen this movie, Bobkat...I watched "Love actually" (again) on German TV just two days ago, I love this one and it always makes me cry (broken hearts do, happy hearts do too. Yes, I cry easily and sometimes it feels so good...)
Happy New Year!!!!

Shephard said...

May have to check this one out. I haven't seen it! :) Thanks for the recommendation.

You asked about the photo.. it's from The Pasadena Rose Parade... 80 million blossoms on 40 floats! :) Do they show it in the UK?
I just posted the first batch of photos from it.

~S

Sarch said...

I haven't had any desire to watch this film (although I do like Tom Hanks in most things). However your review has me rethinking my stance BK.

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

Dear B-K...I stumbled on a WONDERFUL clip on YouTube of Michael Jeter's speech when he won a Tony...It was so dear and inspiring, too....There are two versions of it---ONE is much better than the other...If you get a chance you might want to take a peek....Just put in Michael Jeter, I think...OR, Muchael Jeter at The Tony Awards....! Such a sweet dear man.

Nikki-ann said...

Oh yes, The Green Mile is a great film. It's been a while since I last watched it.

Ramona said...

Stephen King is one of my favourite authors, and I'd really recommend reading the novel. He has such a creative, zany,imagination. I too, loved the movie and will keep it in mind for a re-watch. Plus, Tom Hanks is my moview-star boyfriend ;)

David said...

the audio book is excellent too

Anna said...

Great movie! :)

Ps said...

Oh yes--this movie is one of Satish's and my all time favourites.Both of us have watched it and LOVED it.'Shawshank redemption' is again another favourite of mine.I didnt know that it was the same Director.

Book and Hook said...

I loved watching that movie, and rewatch it every few months. It made me cry and about every other time I watch it, it makes me cry again. So much emotion in that movie.