When it comes to Stephen King adaptations, Netflix has done right by fans of the beloved author. Not only has the streaming service produced three of them as exclusives in the last five years – Mike Flanagan's Gerald's Game, Zak Hilditch's 1922, and Vincenzo Natali's In The Tall Grass – but they are also the streaming home of a number of classics. Today, that special section of their library has grown in significant ways, as two of the all time best King movies are now available to watch with a subscription and just a few clicks: Frank Darabont's The Shawshank Redemption and The Green Mile.
With the start of March 2022, Netflix has added a number of new titles to their streaming catalogue – with other titles including Steven Soderbergh's Contagion, Wes Craven's A Nightmare on Elm Street, and Boots Riley's Sorry To Bother You, but Stephen King fans have arguably more to celebrate than anything. The double feature of period prison movies provide movie-lovers with more than five hours of extremely emotional entertainment that showcase the spectacular power of King's storytelling.
Neither The Shawshank Redemption nor The Green Mile are movies that are considered prototypical stories from Stephen King, who has been directly (if not a little unfairly) linked to the horror genre since the start of his career, and the author has a story that he loves to tell about an encounter he had with a woman in a Florida grocery store. However, the Frank Darabont films are both spectacular representations of King's impressive range as a writer, and what's amazing about the two features is that they are emotionally devastating in two completely different ways.
Originally released in 1994, The Shawshank Redemption is a testament to the power of the human spirit and about the remarkable capacity of hope to make all things possible. In contrast, The Green Mile is an epic about the horrible and cruel nature that exists in humanity, and our instinct to crush and destroy beauty that we can't understand.
They are both spectacular cinematic pieces of art, featuring remarkable ensemble casts, and phenomenal cinematography from Roger Deakins and David Tattersall, respectively.
If you don't already have set weekend plans and it's been a minute since you've seen either movie, this Netflix addition may be a sign that you need to keep your Saturday night open for movie magic. And when you're done, if you're still looking for more, you can always dive into the other excellent Stephen King movies on the streaming service, including the exclusives mentioned earlier, John Carpenter's Christine (opens in new tab), Rob Reiner's Stand By Me (opens in new tab), and Mary Lambert's Pet Sematary (opens in new tab).
Once you're done with all that, check our my weekly Adapting Stephen King column to learn about the full history of adaptations, and our Upcoming Stephen King Movies and TV guide for a full rundown of all of the projects that are presently in the works.
NJ native who calls LA home; lives in a Dreamatorium. A decade-plus CinemaBlend veteran; endlessly enthusiastic about the career he’s dreamt of since seventh grade.
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