Shawshank Redemption: Andy Dufresne Is Jesus – Theory Explained

Just as Jesus ascends to Heaven in body and spirit, Andy Dufresne is nowhere to be found after his escape. He enjoys the full satisfaction of his freedom with no outstanding business to attend to, and to make an analogy even clearer, he is heading for the paradise land he has desired for most of his life. There, Andy waits for Red to follow his instructions, which function as gospel scriptures, and welcome him, dressed in white and relishing in the near-endless blue of the sea, after Red has endured his own process of redemption.

Analyzing The Shawshank Redemption from this angle offers a whole new interpretation of every little detail. For example, Andy’s exploits attract a group of inmates – his followers – who defend him and continue to spread his message after he does what many considered impossible. The hammer Andy uses to carve the rocks and eventually dig the tunnel to his freedom portrays Andy as a humble but daring carpenter. The Shawshank Redemption has a more tragic take on Judas Iscariot, as instead of a disciple who betrays Jesus for money, the film features Tommy, an inmate who was murdered for agreeing to testify in favor of Andy’s innocence . Tommy’s death sets in motion a chain of events that lead to Andy’s escape and the downfall of the manager. Finally, the film’s most obvious Christian message is evident in what the director says to Andy when he returns his Bible before the great escape: “Salvation is within.”

Undoubtedly, The Shawshank Redemption is a story of hope, perseverance and freedom. The film offers the opportunity to analyze its themes from countless different angles, and all of them put a new spin on Andy Dufresne’s time in Shawshank. With that, the similarity between Andy Dufresne and Jesus Christ certainly cannot be denied.


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Just like Jesus ascends to Heaven in body and spirit, Andy Dufresne is impossible to find after his escape. He enjoys the full satisfaction of his freedom with no pending matters to attend to, and to make it an even clearer analogy, he heads to the paradisiac land he longed for most of his life. There, Andy waits for Red to follow his directions, which work as evangelical scriptures, and welcomes him, dressed in white and relishing in the near-infinite blue of the sea, after Red endures his own process of redemption.
Analyzing The Shawshank Redemption from this angle offers a brand new interpretation of every little detail. For example, Andy’s exploits attract a group of inmates — his disciples —who defend him and continue to spread his message after he did what many considered impossible. The hammer Andy uses to sculpt rocks and eventually carve the tunnel to his freedom paints Andy as a humble but audacious carpenter. The Shawshank Redemption has a more tragic take on Judas Iscariot, as instead of a disciple who betrays Jesus for money, the movie presents Tommy, an inmate who’s murdered for being willing to testify in favor of Andy’s innocence. Tommy’s death puts into motion a chain of events that lead to Andy’s escape and the warden’s downfall. Finally, the most evident Christian message in the movie is patent in what the warden says to Andy when he returns his Bible before the big escape: “Salvation lies within.”
Undoubtedly, The Shawshank Redemption is a story about hope, perseverance, and freedom. The movie offers the possibility to analyze its themes from countless different angles, and all of them give a new spin to Andy Dufresne’s stay at Shawshank. With that, the similarity between Andy Dufresne and Jesus Christ certainly can’t be denied.

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