The Stephen King movie adaptation for his book “the green mile” was based on a true story. An African-American boy at the age of 14, called George Stinney was convicted in an unfair trial in 1944, for murdering two girls Betty June Binnicker, age 11, and Mary Emma Thames, age 7 in South Carolina. He was executed by the electric chair. He is the youngest ever to be executed by the electric chair. Later in 2004, after re-examining the case and having a judicial review, his conviction overturned, seventy years later, when the judge concluded that his trial was unfair.
The Green Mile is an American fantasy crime drama, written and directed by Frank Darabont. Grossing $286 million globally and earning four Oscar nominations for the 72nd academy awards. It stars Tom hanks as a death row officer with Michael Clarke, David Morse, and Bonnie Hunt in supporting roles. it is arguably the best Stephen King movie adaptation. It explores various themes that we deal with in the world such as tropes, intent, and lore.
The movie is 3 hours long, taking place in the U.S prison during the Great Depression. Flashbacks play an important role throughout the movie. The first scene shows us Paul Edgecomb (Tom Hanks) walking in the green mile, a pathway from the execution to the cellular. We see John Coffey (Michael Clarke Duncan), one of the convicts, condemned for killing two sisters cruelly. John’s physical skills made me think that he sure is capable of killing anyone with a snap of a finger; but later throughout the movie, we see that he embodies kindness itself. He is scared of sleeping in dark places, cries in his sleep, and has a simple mind. Which made the viewer and Paul doubt and ask: “is john actually guilty of killing the two innocent girls?”
Paul, troubled by the darkness of his job, is not the person you would expect to handle such part of prison due to his kindness. We have another abhorrent employee – and I’m putting that nicely- Percy Wetmore, who only got the job due to familial relationships. He is just there to make chaos and treat prisoners in the least humane way possible. Even when Paul tries to keep him back, it doesn’t change my urge to punch him in the face.
I really sympathized with one specific prisoner -Eduard Delacroix- Del for short, that Percy kept treating badly. Del adopted a pet mouse, named Mr. jingles, and that is the only thing that kept him happy. Percy stomped on the mouse killing it. But later Coffey saved him. Del only wanted his mouse safe. During his execution, Percy deliberately left a dry sponge on del’s head so he can have a slow, torturous and painful death.
I did mention that this is a paranormal story, but I did not quite elaborate or mention a spirit even. Coffey can sense the pain of others, even in subtle ways, such as holding their hand. Paul suffered from the “worst urinary infection”. Coffey sees Paul suffering from it until he grabs a hold of Paul and somehow, takes the infection into his body and then dispels it for good. Using Coffey’s words here, “I just took it back is all”. Also, there are other things Coffey did but I would rather not spoil.
The theme of good versus evil, the quarreling between them is portrayed throughout the movie. In a paranormal story, we see how humanity is explored on a profound level. A look of poignant at the unfair judgment of black lives and on the other side, privilege being taken by a white employee. The idea of the movie is portrayed ever so smoothly. It has a lot to say and it did not disappoint. It is worth the investment of time. It focuses on the relationship between the guard and the prisoner and battling racism in such an era. It shows where humanity is going at a time of wrongness in time. Backed up by extraordinary acting, all actors were 100% killing it. Tom killed it. Michael Clark Duncan killed it. Even the actor who played Percy killed it. Take my word for it, this movie is a “you should not miss”.