Marvel's Black Widow just dropped on Blu-ray, so it's little surprise that the first movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe in two years is topping the Blu-ray charts. People who still want to be sure they own a copy of their favorite films need to keep that collection intact. Widow dethroned the number one movie from the previous week, Zack Snyder's Justice League, though that film is still holding steady at number two, showing just how big the Snyder Cut fandom really is. But there is one surprise on the current charts, which shows that another film still has a pretty impressive fanbase, even more than 25 years later, The Shawshank Redemption.
According to NPD (via MediaPlayNews), the number five movie for Blu-ray sales this past week was 1994's The Shawshank Redemption. Every other movie in the top 20 had either been in the list the week before, or was a brand new release, but Shawshank jumped from nowhere into the number five spot. This wasn't entirely out of nowhere. The Shawshank Redemption got a brand new, bright and shiny 4K edition that came out this week, but it shows just how many people love The Shawshank Redemption that so many snapped it up.
98% of Shawshank's sales came from the new edition, so whether people ordered it online or it became an impulse buy at a store when they saw it, once people were aware the new disc was out there, they grabbed it. At the same time, a few people apparently picked up other editions, and 2% may actually be a lot of people.
It's perhaps fitting that The Shawshank Redemption still does well when it comes to home entertainment sales. While the movie was a critical darling and an Oscar nominee upon release, it was a box office failure. However, millions found the movie on home video and cable television. It's since become one of the most popular movies ever among movie fans. It currently sits at the top of IMDb's Top 250 Most Popular movies list, a place it has held more or less continuously for two decades.
But that's also why seeing The Shawshank Redemption back on the sales charts is maybe a little surprising. At this point, you'd think that everybody who wanted to own a copy of Shawshank probably has it. And even if you own a nice new 4K TV, is it really worth upgrading if you already own the movie on Blu-ray? Maybe this is a bunch of people who only had it on DVD finally making the jump to HD. Or maybe the fans are so serious about the movie that they feel a need to own it in its best possible quality, even if the movie isn't necessarily the type that "needs" 4K resolution to be appreciated.
Whether in 4K or not, The Shawshank Redemption is a truly great movie, perhaps the greatest movie adaptation of a Stephen King story, even if it is not the sort of work he is best known for. And with so many people bringing the movie home, it will have the opportunity to be discovered by new generations, and likely continue to be popular for decades to come.
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