Deliverance

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Deliverance

Deliverance is a 1970 novel by American author James Dickey that was made by Warner Bros. Studios into a 1972 motion picture drama.

Contents

Motion picture

Widely acclaimed as a landmark film, it is the story of four southern suburbanites on a weekend getaway to canoe down the fictional Cahulawassee River in the remote Georgia wildernesses, hoping to have fun and see the glory of nature before the river valley is flooded over with the upcoming construction of a dam. The trip turns into a terrifying ordeal revealing the primal nature of man, his animal instincts of survival, and even his potential for violence.

Travelling in twos, their canoes are briefly separated and the occupants of one canoe (Bobby and Ed) encounter a pair of gritty mountain men emerging from woods. In what remains one of the most disturbing scenes in film history, at gunpoint one of the canoeists, character Bobby Trippe, is forced to strip naked, his ear twisted to bring him to his knees, and then ordered to "squeal like a pig" before being sodomized while Ed is bound to a tree by his belt tightened around his neck.

The film is also noted for the memorable music scene near the beginning that sets the tone for what lies ahead: a trip into unknown and potentially dangerous territory. In the scene at the rural gas station, character Drew Ballinger plays the instrumental "Dueling Banjos" on his guitar with a retarded mountain boy named Lonny (implied as being an inbred albino in the James Dickey novel), who eventually outplays Drew with his banjo. The song won the 1974 Grammy Award for Best Country Instrumental Performance. One mountain man is killed by Lewis' archery skills, and the four make a run for it downriver, but soon Drew is shot and killed from behind in his canoe by the other mountain man, and then Lewis breaks his femur in the following boat crash in the rocky rapids. For their survival, Ed must climb the cliffs and overcome his very fears in order to dispatch the other mountain man with his bow and arrow. The three leave the river valley forever, lying about their ordeal to police investigators (the sheriff was played by author James Dickey) in order to escape their double murder charge, and vowing to keep their story of death and survival a secret for the rest of their lives.

Deliverance was shot on the Chattooga River, dividing the states of South Carolina and Georgia. In the years following the film's release, more than 30 people have drowned attempting to recreate the canoe trip along the section of the river where the film was shot. The rapids within both book and film become a major symbol and plot device to reflect the natural dangers of the untamed wilderness towards urban outsiders.

In 2001, the book was named as one of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century by the editorial board of the American Modern Library. The film was selected by the New York Times as one of "The Best 1,000 Movies Ever Made."

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"Lonny"

Running time: 109 minutes

Crew

Cast

Award nominations



For the album by the Swedish band Opeth, see Deliverance.

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