Deliverance (1972)
Front Cover Actor Back Cover
Ned Beatty Bobby Trippe
Ronny Cox Drew Ballinger
James Dickey Sheriff
Macon McCalman Deputy Queen
Bill McKinney Mountain Man
Ed O'Neill Highway Patrolman (uncredited)
Johnny Popwell Ambulance Driver
Billy Redden Lonny
Burt Reynolds Lewis Medlock
Jon Voight Ed Gentry
Movie Details
Genre Action; Adventure
Director John Boorman
Studio Warner Bros.
Language English
Audience Rating R (Restricted)
Running Time 109 mins
Country USA
Color Color
Plot
Adapted from James Dickey's popular novel, John Boorman's 1972 movie recounts the grueling psychological and physical journey taken by four city slickers down a river in the backwoods of Georgia. At the behest of Iron John-esque Lewis (Burt Reynolds), the less adventuresome Ed (Jon Voight), Bobby (Ned Beatty), and Drew (Ronny Cox) agree to canoe down an uncharted section of the river before a dam project ruins the region. After warnings from the grimy, impoverished locals, and Drew's tuneful yet ominous "Dueling Banjos" encounter with a mute inbred boy, the four men embark on their trip, exulting in the beauty of nature and the initial thrill of the rapids. The next day, however, things begin to take a turn for the worse when Bobby and Ed decide to rest on shore after becoming separated from Lewis and Drew. Two rifle-wielding mountain men (Billy McKinney and Herbert "Cowboy" Coward) emerge from the woods, tying up Ed while one of them rapes Bobby and makes him "squeal like a pig." Lewis and Drew rescue them, but the attack irrevocably changes the tenor of the journey. As the river gets rougher and rougher, the men come to nightmarish grips with what it means to survive outside the safety net of "civilization." Shooting on location on the Chattoga River in Georgia, cinematographer Vilmos Zsigmond captured the appeal and the peril of the river's pristine isolation, enhancing both the adventure's visceral thrills and Dickey's philosophical inquiry into man's true nature. Like such other early '70s Hollywood films as Sam Peckinpah's Straw Dogs (1971), Deliverance ponders violent instincts and definitions of manhood, ideas made all the more pressing by the period's escalating violence and assault on traditional gender roles. Regardless of these headier concerns, the critically praised realism of the action scenes on the river, with the actors performing a lot of the stunts, helped make the film a hit. Deliverance was nominated for three Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director, although Dickey's screenplay of his novel was passed over, as was Reynolds' star-making turn. With its chilling sense of infinite menace, Deliverance spoke to contemporary anxieties over what anyone could do, given the right (or wrong) circumstances. — Lucia Bozzola
Personal Details
Seen It Yes
Index 80
Collection Status In Collection
Links All Movie Guide
Amazon US
DVD Empire
Product Details
Format DVD
Region Region 1
Screen Ratio Standard 1.33:1 Color
Widescreen 1.85:1 Color (Anamorphic)
UPC 085391544524
Chapters 30
Release Date 9/14/2004
Subtitles English; French
Packaging Keep Case
Audio Tracks ENGLISH: Dolby Digital 5.1 [CC]
FRENCH: Dolby Digital Mono
Nr of Disks/Tapes 1
Extra Features
Color Closed-captioned Dolby Widescreen