When DELIVERANCE appeared in theaters at the end of July in 1972, the buzz around it was most certainly contagious. Two years prior, the book that the film had been based on had been a best seller. Not much later, the source material itself would be considered one of the greatest novels of the 20th century. But the movie, itself, became something of note. It too would land up on awards lists.
Ed (Jon Voight) is convinced by his friend Lewis (Burt Reynolds) to help set up a canoe trip down the Cahulawassee River. To fill up the trip, Ed recruits his other friends Bobby (Ned Beatty) and Drew (Ronny Cox) to come along. With the Cahulawassee River valley soon to be flooded by the construction of a dam, this will be their last opportunity. Unfortunately while stopping on the river’s edge for lunch, a horrible circumstance transpires, changing all their lives forever.
Today DELIVERANCE is considered one of the greatest films of all time. John Boorman, though not necessarily prolific, showed why he was one of the era’s best directors. James Dickey, the author of the novel, wrote the adaptation of the film himself. Leading the cast, Jon Voight was only three years removed from his Oscar performance in MIDNIGHT COWBOY. DELIVERANCE also stars Burt Reynolds. Dark Discussions gives tribute to him and his recent passing.