To redeem is to set yourself free; free from the shackles of eternal guilt and the lingering memories of unspeakable sins committed in the past. Themes of guilt, salvation and redemption have been extensively used in cinema to tell stories that are profoundly human. Redemption is essential to character development in that it provides a great amount of depth and complexity to the characters and in the process humanizing them which evokes a sense of empathy in the viewers. Actors are often pushed beyond their abilities here in roles that demand immense psychological and emotional preparations.
While there are films that focus on redemption as their central themes, there have been numerous occasions in cinema where a brief moment or act of redemption could do wonders with the film’s underlying meanings and character development. This article takes a look at both of those kinds of films where redemption of the characters have been portrayed effectively. Also note that the numbers do not reflect any sort of rankings for the films. With everything said now, let’s move on to the list of top movies about redemption. You can watch several of these best redemption movies on Netflix, Hulu or Amazon Prime.
10. Pulp Fiction (1994)
None of Quentin Tarantino‘s films have been as thematically deep as ‘Pulp Fiction’. A film that created ripples in the American indie scene back in the 90s, ‘Pulp Fiction’ depicts the stories of two mob hitmen, a boxer, a gangster’s wife and a pair of diner bandits whose lives get intersected in the strangest possible ways that explore tales of violence, masculinity, loyalty and redemption. The film’s most powerful act of redemption comes in the form of Jules Winfield’s character. Tarantino uses his character to convey the essence of the central themes of violence and redemption running in the film.
‘Pulp Fiction’ features one of the most memorable acts of redemption in cinema in the famous diner scene in the climax where Jules overpowers Ringo who attempts to rob the restaurant with his girlfriend. After explaining him about the miraculous escape he made earlier that morning that very nearly killed him, Jules recites verses from the Bible only this time making the slightest effort to interpret what was being said through those lines all the time when he used them to commit heinous acts of violence and murders, making his act of redemption powerful beyond words.
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