"The Long Exile" is a short story by Leo Tolstoy. It was published in 2008 as part of the collection of short stories in the book The Long Exile, and Other Short Stories. Comparatively, The Shawshank Redemption is a 1994 movie adaptation of a novella, by Stephen King, titled Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption.
I feel it would be counterproductive to simply provide you with a thesis statement. However, I can provide you with similarities and contrasts to help you grasp a good pathway to such a statement.
Both stories involve the lengthy incarceration of a wrongly accused innocent man. Does that injustice, or the subsequent imprisonment, prevent either from trying to live a meaningful life?
Both men come face-to-face with the reality of the circumstances that truly occurred and led to their being found guilty and sentenced to a life of incarceration. Does the truth set them free?
One prisoner uses the information that clears him to try and obtain legal freedom. However, in the end, he dies anyway. By contrast, the other is denied the ability to use the discovery of the truth to free himself. Instead, he becomes a true criminal to find the ability to be free.
Are circumstances always as they seem? Is truth always the pathway to justice? Can we escape destiny? Does it limit a person's abilities to positively influence others when we restrict their ability to interact with people?