CHANNEL 4 4SEVEN E4 MORE4 FILM4 4MUSIC 4oD

Viewing your Watchlist and recommended content requires Javascript

  • 18
  • Crime, Drama
  • 1999
  • 189 mins

The Green Mile

The Green Mile

Synopsis

Tom Hanks stars in this second prison drama adapted from a story by Stephen King and directed by Frank Darabont.

About

Tom Hanks stars in this second prison drama adapted from a story by Stephen King and directed by Frank Darabont. Into a depression-era penitentiary comes a prisoner accused of killing two children, yet apparently capable of performing miracles

Five years after The Shawshank Redemption director Darabont again hooked up with writer Stephen King for another quasi-religious fable, once more set in a prison. Though lacking the 1994 film's depth, The Green Mile is a grand, sprawling, soap opera of a film that contains moments of high emotional intensity - and a great deal of woolly padding.

In 1935 Paul Edgecombe (Hanks) is an officer at Cold Mountain Penitentiary. Into his care comes convicted child-killer John Coffey (Duncan). A great hulking bear of a man, Coffey exhibits a sort of childlike innocence and seems capable of healing the sick. "He just fell out of the sky," says his lawyer, and though it takes three hours for the plot to work itself out, Coffey's initials provide a clue to the story's inspiration.

Though the film drifts off down some long blind alleys, when Darabont exercises discipline the result is highly effective. The relationship between Edgecombe and Coffey is tenderly painted and the depiction of the green mile itself - the eerily tinted corridor that leads to the electric chair - is very creepy. Coffey himself is something of an empty vessel, but the final scene, built around a clip of Fred Astaire singing "Heaven... I'm in Heaven," is very well worth the wait.

Cast & Connections

  • Actor: James Cromwell, Sam Rockwell, Bonnie Hunt, Tom Hanks, Barry Pepper, Harry Dean Stanton, Graham Greene, David Morse, Michael Jeter, Michael Clarke Duncan
  • Director: Frank Darabont
  • Screen Writer: Frank Darabont
  • Writer (Book): Stephen King
  • Producer: Frank Darabont, David Valdes
  • Photographer: David Tattersall
  • Composer: Thomas Newman

In a nutshell

Though the film is way too long, there's a great deal of value here thanks to the imaginative stylings of Darabont and a story with plenty of emotional impact.

Latest from Film4...

  • Film4 Johnny English Reborn

    Johnny English Reborn

    Rowan Atkinson returns as the inept secret agent, this time taking on international assassins

  • Film4 Maps To The Stars

    Maps To The Stars

    Julianne Moore, John Cusack and Mia Wasikowska star in David Cronenberg's Hollywood caricature.

  • Channel 4 Blog

    Joe Cunningham's 11 recommendations for LFF 14

    Unfortunately I haven¿t been jet setting around the world this year to the various exciting international film festivals, but that¿s what makes the London Film Festival¿s compilation approach to progr

  • Channel 4 Blog

    Michael Leader's 11 recommendations for LFF 2014

    One of the best things about the London Film Festival¿s smorgasbord approach to programming is that, amongst the world premieres and gala screenings, there¿s an eclectic collection of exciting films o

Register with Film4.com

Personalise your Film4 experience

  • Set film reminders
  • Build your watchlist
  • Get film suggestions

or Register

Share