7.7/10
84,357
367 user 129 critic

Deliverance (1972)

Intent on seeing the Cahulawassee River before it's turned into one huge lake, outdoor fanatic Lewis Medlock takes his friends on a river-rafting trip they'll never forget into the dangerous American back-country.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (novel)
Reviews
Popularity
1,296 ( 439)

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 2 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Ed
...
...
...
Ed Ramey ...
...
Seamon Glass ...
Randall Deal ...
...
...
Lewis Crone ...
First Deputy
Ken Keener ...
Second Deputy
Johnny Popwell ...
Ambulance Driver
John Fowler ...
Kathy Rickman ...
Nurse
Edit

Storyline

The Cahulawassee River valley in Northern Georgia is one of the last natural pristine areas of the state, which will soon change with the imminent building of a dam on the river, which in turn will flood much of the surrounding land. As such, four Atlanta city slickers - alpha male Lewis Medlock, generally even-keeled Ed Gentry, slightly condescending Bobby Trippe, and wide-eyed Drew Ballinger - decide to take a multi-day canoe trip on the river, with only Lewis and Ed having experience in outdoor life. They know going in that the area is ethno-culturally homogeneous and isolated, but don't understand the full extent of such until they arrive and see what they believe is the result of generations of inbreeding. Their relatively peaceful trip takes a turn for the worse when half way through they encounter a couple of hillbilly moonshiners. That encounter not only makes the four battle their way out of the valley intact and alive, but threatens the relationships of the four as they do ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Four men ride a wild river. A weekend turns into a nightmare. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 September 1972 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Beim Sterben ist jeder der Erste  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$46,122,355, 31 December 1972
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

According to director John Boorman, the gas station attendant's jig during "Dueling Banjos" was unscripted and spontaneous. See more »

Goofs

The police cars have amber emergency rotating lights on the roof. They should be blue (popular in southern states) or red. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Lewis: You w- you wanna... you wanna talk about the vanishing wilderness?
Bobby: Lewis, listen - what are you so anxious about this?
Lewis: Because they're buildin' a dam across the Cahulawassee River; they're gonna flood a whole valley, Bobby, that's why. Dammit, they're drownin' a river; they're drownin' a river, man.
See more »

Crazy Credits

In the opening credits there is an obvious typo. About the main song first is written: "'Duelling Banjos' Arranged and played by Eric Weissberg with Steve Mandel". Right after that follows "The song 'Dueling Banjos' is an arrangement of the song 'Feudin' Banjos', copyright owner - Combine Music Corp." See more »

Connections

Referenced in Invicta (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

Moonshiner
Bob Dylan
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A true classic
2 October 2000 | by See all my reviews

This is without a doubt one of the best movies I have ever seen; a chilling account of a doomed canoe trip that will haunt your memory for years to come. It is disheartening to read the number of negative reviews for this excellent film, which I can only attribute to the one-dimensional nature of today's uber-blockbusters. It seems that the finer subtleties of good filmmaking present in Deliverance are lost on today's generation of moviegoers whose cinematic palates have been cloyed with multi-million-dollar special effects, unimaginative dialogue, mindless violence and saccharine plots. Every aspect of this movie has been wonderfully choreographed and combine to create a film that goes well beyond mere entertainment, simultaneously shocking and challenging the audience.

Everything that occurs in this movie serves a poignant purpose; the creators focus on quality rather than quantity. The plot, which seems simple enough, gradually takes on an eerily disturbing nature. The dialogue is sparse, but screenwriters and director use it as a strength, allowing events and cinematography to speak volumes about the characters. The violence, though disturbing, also acts as an integral piece of the film. The scenery is spectacular and Deliverance makes some of the best use of foreshadowing and silence I've ever seen in a movie.

Few movies leave such an impression on the viewer. To this day, I can't hear "Dueling Banjos"--or just about any banjo music for that matter--without thinking of this movie. Nor can I help but feel this movie doomed Ned Beatty's acting career (after seeing this film, every time you see Ned Beatty in any other role, you can't help but remember the infamous riverbank scene). Even people who have never seen the movie know the ghastly meaning of the words "squeal like a pig".

It is truly worth taking the time to see this film. It is an excellent treatise of the human reaction when challenged with fear, danger and adventure.


186 of 228 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?
Review this title | See all 367 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page