in about 100 words or less
US 109m, Colour
Director: John Boorman; Cast: Jon Voight, Burt Reynolds, Ronny Cox, Ned Beatty, James Dickey
Deliverance is a powerful and graphic drama based upon the 1970 James Dickey novel of the same name. In addition to its stereotyped depiction of the inbred, genetically deformed and dentally challenged banjo-playing “hillfolk” of the southern United States, the film is a horrifying whitewater adventure filled with personal tragedy and mental anguish for four “city boys” who attempt to canoe down the Cahulawassee River before it is destroyed by flooding. In addition to setting man against nature and man against man, the film also provides a message warning against the threat of development and ensuing environmental degradation. Finally, as psychological a drama, the characters greatest challenge is also the most potent element of the story, which is the emotional aftermath of their harrowing ordeal (Klaus Ming November 2011).