Andy Dufresne Quotes in The Shawshank Redemption (1994)


Andy Dufresne Quotes:

  • Andy Dufresne: [in letter to Red] Remember Red, hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.

  • Andy Dufresne: [to Red] I guess it comes down a simple choice: Get busy living, or get busy dying.

  • Andy Dufresne: [referring to Andy using an alias to launder money for the warden] If they ever try to trace any of those accounts, they're gonna end up chasing a figment of my imagination.

    Red: Well, I'll be damned. Did I say you were good? Shit, you're a Rembrandt!

    Andy Dufresne: Yeah. The funny thing is - on the outside, I was an honest man, straight as an arrow. I had to come to prison to be a crook.

  • Andy Dufresne: What about you? What are you in here for?

    Red: Murder, same as you.

    Andy Dufresne: Innocent?

    Red: [shakes his head] Only guilty man in Shawshank.

  • Heywood: The Count of Monte Crisco...

    Floyd: That's "Cristo" you dumb shit.

    Heywood: Alexandree Dumb-ass. Dumb-ass.

    Andy Dufresne: Dumb-ass? "Dumas". You know what it's about? You'll like it, it's about a prison break.

    Red: We oughta file that under "Educational" too, oughten we?

  • Andy Dufresne: That's the beauty of music. They can't get that from you... Haven't you ever felt that way about music?

    Red: I played a mean harmonica as a younger man. Lost interest in it though. Didn't make much sense in here.

    Andy Dufresne: Here's where it makes the most sense. You need it so you don't forget.

    Red: Forget?

    Andy Dufresne: Forget that... there are places in this world that aren't made out of stone. That there's something inside... that they can't get to, that they can't touch. That's yours.

    Red: What're you talking about?

    Andy Dufresne: Hope.

  • Andy Dufresne: She was beautiful. God I loved her. I just didn't know how to show it, that's all. I killed her, Red. I didn't pull the trigger, but I drove her away. And that's why she died, because of me.

  • Andy Dufresne: Red. If you ever get out of here, do me a favor.

    Red: Sure, Andy. Anything.

    Andy Dufresne: There's a big hayfield up near Buxton. You know where Buxton is?

    Red: Well, there's... there's a lot of hayfields up there.

    Andy Dufresne: One in particular. It's got a long rock wall with a big oak tree at the north end. It's like something out of a Robert Frost poem. It's where I asked my wife to marry me. We went there for a picnic and made love under that oak and I asked and she said yes. Promise me, Red. If you ever get out... find that spot. At the base of that wall, you'll find a rock that has no earthly business in a Maine hayfield. Piece of black, volcanic glass. There's something buried under it I want you to have.

    Red: What, Andy? What's buried under there?

    Andy Dufresne: [turns to walk away] You'll have to pry it up... to see.

  • Andy Dufresne: [in a letter to Red] Dear Red. If you're reading this, you've gotten out. And if you've come this far, maybe you're willing to come a little further. You remember the name of the town, don't you?

    Red: Zihuatanejo.

    Andy Dufresne: I could use a good man to help me get my project on wheels. I'll keep an eye out for you and the chessboard ready. Remember, Red, hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies. I will be hoping that this letter finds you, and finds you well. Your friend. Andy.

  • Andy Dufresne: You know what the Mexicans say about the Pacific?

    Red: No.

    Andy Dufresne: They say it has no memory. That's where I want to live the rest of my life. A warm place with no memory.

  • Boggs: Now, I'm gonna open my fly and you're gonna swallow what I give ya to swallow. And after you swallow mine you're gonna swallow Rooster's cause ya done broke his nose and I think he oughta have something to show for it.

    Andy Dufresne: Anything you put in my mouth you're gonna lose.

    Boggs: Naw, you don't understand. You do that and I'll put all eight inches of steel in your ear.

    Andy Dufresne: All right. But you should know that sudden serious brain injury causes the victim to bite down hard. In fact, I hear the bite reflex is so strong they have to pry the victims jaws open with a crowbar.

    Boggs: Where do you get this shit?

    Andy Dufresne: I read it. You know how to read, you ignorant fuck?

  • District Attorney: And that also is very convenient, isn't it, Mr. Dufresne?

    Andy Dufresne: Since I am innocent of this crime, sir, I find it decidedly inconvenient that the gun was never found.

  • Andy Dufresne: I have no enemies here.

    Red: Yeah? Wait a while. Word gets around. The Sisters have taken quite a likin' to you. Especially Boggs.

    Andy Dufresne: I don't suppose it would help if I told them that I'm not homosexual.

    Red: Neither are they. You have to be human first. They don't qualify.

  • Andy Dufresne: Bad luck, I guess. It floats around. It's got to land on somebody. It was my turn, that's all. I was in the path of the tornado. I just didn't expect the storm would last as long as it has.

  • Warden Samuel Norton: [after Andy tells him Tommy could prove Andy's innocence] I have to say that's the most amazing story I've ever heard. What amazes me most is that you were taken in by it.

    Andy Dufresne: [Confused by his response] Sir?

    Warden Samuel Norton: Well, it's obvious this fellow Williams is impressed with you. He hears your tale of woe and quite naturally, wants to cheer you up. He's young, not terribly bright. It's not surprising he wouldn't know what a state he put you in.

    Andy Dufresne: Sir, he's telling the truth.

    Warden Samuel Norton: Well, let's say for the moment this Blatch does exist. You think he'd just fall to his knees and cry "Yes, I did it, I confess! Oh, and by the way, add a life term to my sentence."

    Andy Dufresne: You know that wouldn't matter. With Tommy's testimony I can get a new trial.

    Warden Samuel Norton: That's assuming Blatch is still there. Chances are excellent he'd be released by now.

    Andy Dufresne: Well they'd have his last known address, names of relatives. It's a chance, isn't there?

    Warden Samuel Norton: [Shakes his head]

    Andy Dufresne: How can you be so obtuse?

    Warden Samuel Norton: What? What did you call me?

    Andy Dufresne: Obtuse. Is it deliberate?

    Warden Samuel Norton: Son, you're forgetting yourself.

    Andy Dufresne: The country club will have his old time cards. Records, W-2s with his name on them.

    Warden Samuel Norton: If you wanna indulge in this fantasy, that's your business. Don't make it mine. This meeting is over.

    Andy Dufresne: Sir, if I ever get out, I'd never mention what happens here. I'd be just as indictable as you for laundering that money.

    Warden Samuel Norton: [slams his fists on the table] Don't you ever mention money to me again, you sorry son of a bitch. Not in this office, not anywhere.

  • Captain Hadley: Dufresne!

    [to Dekins]

    Captain Hadley: That's him. That's the one.

    Guard Dekins: I'm Dekins. I was thinking about setting up some kind of trust fund for my kids' educations.

    Andy Dufresne: Oh, I see. Well, why don't we have a seat and talk it over. Brooks, do you have a piece of paper and a pencil? Thanks. So, Mr. Dekins...

    Brooks: [at lunchtime to the other prisoners] And then Andy says, "Mr. Dekins, do you want your sons to go to Harvard... or Yale?"

    Floyd: He didn't say that!

    Brooks: God is my witness! Dekins just looked at him a second and then he laughed himself silly and afterwards he actually shook Andy's hand.

    Heywood: My ass.

    Brooks: Shook his hand! I near soiled myself, I mean all Andy needed was a suit and a tie and a little jiggly hula gal on his desk and he woulda been *Mister* Dufresne, if you please.

    Red: Making a few friends, huh Andy?

    Andy Dufresne: I wouldn't say friends. I'm a convicted murderer who provides sound financial planning - it's a wonderful pet to have.

  • [after Tommy told the story of how he got arrested]

    Andy Dufresne: Maybe it's time for you to switch careers.

    Tommy Williams: Huh?

    Andy Dufresne: What I mean is, you don't seem to be a very good thief, maybe you should try something else.

    Tommy Williams: Yeah, well, what the hell do you know about it Capone? What are you in for?

    Andy Dufresne: Me? My lawyer fucked me. Everybody's innocent in here. Didn't you know that?

  • [Warden Norton finds the Bible in his safe after Andy escapes and finds the message Andy left for him]

    Andy Dufresne: Dear Warden, You were right. Salvation lay within.

    [Norton flips through a couple of pages to find the outline of the rock hammer that was hidden in the Book of Exodus within the Bible, and then drops it on the floor in shock]

  • [Warden Norton visits Andy in solitary]

    Warden Samuel Norton: I'm sure by now you've heard. Terrible thing. Man that young, less than a year to go, trying to escape... Broke Captain Hadley's heart to shoot him, truly it did. We just have to put it behind us... move on.

    Andy Dufresne: I'm done. Everything stops. Get someone else to run your scams.

    Warden Samuel Norton: [icy] Nothing stops. Nothing... or you will do the hardest time there is. No more protection from the guards. I'll pull you out of that one-bunk Hilton and cast you down with the Sodomites. You'll think you've been fucked by a train! And the library? Gone... sealed off, brick-by-brick. We'll have us a little book barbecue in the yard. They'll see the flames for miles. We'll dance around it like wild Injuns! You understand me? Catching my drift?... Or am I being obtuse?


    Warden Samuel Norton: [to Hadley] Give him another month to think about it.

  • Red: Ever bother you?

    Andy Dufresne: I don't run the scams Red, I just process the profits. Fine line, maybe, but I also built that library and used it to help a dozen guys get their high school diploma. Why do you think the warden lets me do all that?

    Red: To keep you happy and doing the laundry. Money instead of sheets.

  • Tommy Williams: I don't read so good.

    Andy Dufresne: Well.


    Andy Dufresne: You don't read so *well*. Uh, we'll get to that.

  • [Andy has asked Red to procure Rita Hayworth]

    Andy Dufresne: Can you get her?

    Red: Take a few weeks.

    Andy Dufresne: Weeks?

    Red: Well yeah, Andy. I don't have her stuffed down the front of my pants right now, I'm sorry to say, but I'll get her. Relax!

  • Andy Dufresne: I understand you're a man who knows how to get things.

    Red: I'm known to locate certain things from time to time.

  • [Andy after Warden Norton refuses to appeal his case]

    Andy Dufresne: It's my life. Don't you understand? IT'S MY LIFE!

  • Heywood: [Andy has returned after solitary for the record playing stunt] Couldn't play somethin' good, huh? Hank Williams?

    Andy Dufresne: [smiling] They broke the door down before I could take requests.

  • [after Brooks held a knife to Heywood's throat]

    Andy Dufresne: I just don't understand what happened in there.

    Heywood: Old man's crazy as a rat in a tin shithouse, is what.

    Red: Oh Heywood, that's enough out of you!

    Ernie: I heard he had you shittin' in your pants!

    Heywood: Fuck you!

    Red: Would you knock it off? Brooks ain't no bug. He's just... just institutionalized.

    Heywood: Institutionalized, my ass.

    Red: The man's been in here fifty years, Heywood. Fifty years! This is all he knows. In here, he's an important man. He's an educated man. Outside, he's nothin'! Just a used up con with arthritis in both hands.

  • Red: [narrating] The following April Andy did tax returns for half the guards at Shawshank. Year after that he did them all including the warden's. Year after that they rescheduled the start of the intra-mural season to coincide with tax season. The guards on the opposing teams all remembered to bring their W2s.

    Andy Dufresne: So Moresby prison issued you your gun, but you actually had to pay for it.

    Moresby Batter: Damn right. The holster too.

    Andy Dufresne: You see, that's tax deductible, you can write that off.

  • Andy Dufresne: [referring to the state government denying his repeated requests to provide funding to build a library] They can't ignore me forever.

    Warden Samuel Norton: Sure can. But you write your letters if it makes you happy, I'll even mail them for, how's thay?

  • [Playing checkers]

    Red: King me.

    Andy Dufresne: Chess. Now there's a game of kings.

    Red: What?

    Andy Dufresne: Civilized. Strategic...

    Red: ...and a total fuckin' mystery. I hate it.

  • Andy Dufresne: I want to know how the score comes out.

    Tommy Williams: I'll show you how the score comes out

    [crumbles test paper]

    Tommy Williams: . TWO POINTS! THERE'S YOUR GODDAMN SCORE! Cats crawling on trees, five times five is twenty-five.


    Tommy Williams: FUCK THIS PLACE! FUCK IT!

    [Smacks book off the library table, and stormed out]

  • Andy Dufresne: Thirty years. Jesus, when you say it like that...

    Red: ...You wonder where it went.

  • Andy Dufresne: [referring to Fat Ass] What was his name?

    Heywood: What did you say?

    Andy Dufresne: I was just wondering if anybody knew his name.

    Heywood: Fuck do you care, new fish? Doesn't fuckin' matter what his name was. He's dead.

  • Andy Dufresne: Not me. I didn't shoot my wife, and I didn't shoot her lover. Whatever mistakes I made, I've paid for them and then some. That hotel, that boat... I don't think that's too much to ask.

    Red: You shouldn't be doing this to yourself. This is just shitty pipe dreams. Mexico is way down there and you're in here... and that's the way it is

  • Andy Dufresne: I wonder if you might get me a rock hammer

    Red: What is it? And why?

    Andy Dufresne: A rock hammer is about six or seven inches long looks like a miniature Pickaxe

    Red: Pickaxe?

    Andy Dufresne: For rocks.

    Red: For rocks?

    Andy Dufresne: I'm from a rock hound at least I was in my old life I'd like to be again on a limited basis

    Red: Or maybe you'd like to sink your into somebody's skull

    Andy Dufresne: No I have no enemies here

    Red: No? Wait a while word gets around full queers take by force that's all they want or understand if I were you I'd grow eyes in the back of my head

    Andy Dufresne: Thanks for the advice

    Red: That's free, you understand my concern?

    Andy Dufresne: If there's any trouble I won't use the rock hammer

    Red: I guess you'd want to escape? Tunnel under the wall

    [Andy starts laughing]

    Red: did I miss something? What's so funny?

    Andy Dufresne: You'll understand when you see the rock hammer

    Red: What's an item like this usually go for?

    Andy Dufresne: Seven dollars in any rock and gem shop

    Red: My normal marker is twenty percent but this is a specialty item risk goes up price goes up let's make it an even ten bucks

    Andy Dufresne: Ten it is

    Red: Waste of money if you ask me

    Andy Dufresne: Why's that?

    Red: Folks around this joint love surprise inspections if they find you're going to lose it, if they do catch you with it you don't know me, you mention my name we never do business again not for a shoe lace or a stick of gum you got that?

    Andy Dufresne: I understand thank you Mr.?

    Red: "Red", my name's Red

  • Andy Dufresne: ...or come to think of it, I suppose I could set it up for you. That would save you some money. I'll write down the forms you need, you can pick them up, and I'll prepare them for your signature... nearly free of charge... I'd only ask three beers apiece for my co-workers, if that seems fair. I think a man working outdoors feels more like a man if he can have a bottle of suds. That's only my opinion.

  • Warden Samuel Norton: [Referring to the Bible] Pleased to see you reading this, any favorite passages?

    Andy Dufresne: "Watch ye therefore: for ye know not when the master of the house cometh."

    Warden Samuel Norton: Mark 13:35, I've always liked that one, but I prefer "I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life."

    Andy Dufresne: John 8:12

  • Andy Dufresne: Mr. Hadley, do you trust your wife?

    Captain Hadley: Oh that's funny. You're gonna look funnier sucking my dick with no teeth.

    Andy Dufresne: What I mean is, do you think she'd go behind your back and try to hamstring you?

    Captain Hadley: That's it. Step aside Mert, this fucker's having himself an accident.

    [grabs Dufresne and pushes him near the edge of the roof]

    Heywood: He's gonna push him off the roof!

    Andy Dufresne: Because if you do trust her, there's no reason you can't keep that $35,000!

    Captain Hadley: What did you say?

    Andy Dufresne: $35,000.

    Captain Hadley: $35,000?

    Andy Dufresne: All of it.

    Captain Hadley: All of it?

    Andy Dufresne: Every penny.

    Captain Hadley: You better start making sense.

    Andy Dufresne: If you want to keep all of that money, give it to your wife. The IRS allows a one-time-only gift to your spouse for up to $60,000.

    Captain Hadley: Bullshit! Tax free?

    Andy Dufresne: Tax free. IRS can't touch one cent.

    Captain Hadley: You're that smart banker who killed his wife, aren't you? Why should I believe a smart banker like you? So I can end up in here with you?

    Andy Dufresne: It's perfectly legal, go ask the IRS, they'll say the same thing. I actually feel stupid telling you this, I'm sure you would've investigated the matter yourself.

    Captain Hadley: Yeah, fucking A'! I don't need a smart wife-killing banker to tell me where the bear shit in the buckwheat!

    Andy Dufresne: Of course not. But you do need someone to set up the tax-free gift for you, and that'll cost you. A lawyer for example.

    Captain Hadley: Bunch of ball-washing bastards!

    Andy Dufresne: Right. I suppose I could set it up for you. That would save you some money. If you get the forms I'll prepare them for you, nearly free of charge. I'd only ask three beers apiece for each of my co-workers.

    Guard Mert: Ha! "Co-workers", get him that's rich ain't it?

    Andy Dufresne: I think a man working outdoors feels more like a man if he can have a bottle of suds. That's only my opinion, sir.

    Captain Hadley: [looks over at the rest of Andy's co-workers] What are you Jimmies staring at? Back to work!

  • [first lines]

    District Attorney: Mr. Dufresne, describe the confrontation you had with your wife the night that she was murdered.

    Andy Dufresne: It was very bitter. She said she was glad I knew, that she hated all the sneaking around. And she said that she wanted a divorce in Reno.

  • Andy Dufresne: [to Red] I understand you're a man who knows how to get things.

  • Warden Samuel Norton: Do you enjoy working in the laundry?

    Andy Dufresne: No sir, not especially.

  • Andy Dufresne: [repeated line to the warden while being dragged away by prison guards, referring to the warden denying his freedom, intentionally doubting his innocence, therefore preventing him from being released] It's my life.

  • Andy Dufresne: [repeated lines to each other] I understand you're a man who knows how to get things.

    Red: [repeated lines to each other] I'm known to locate certain things from time to time.

Browse more character quotes from The Shawshank Redemption (1994)