Sometimes you have to lose yourself before you can find anything.

A review by Mike Shea   Movie Rating: ( * * * * · )    DVD Rating: ( * * * * · )

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For a long time I was outside the fun when it came to Deliverance. While all my friends danced and poked with "Man, with pants like that you could have been an extra in Deliverance!" and "How good are you at playing the banjo?" and finally the most common "Der-ner-ner ner ner ner ner ner ner" (think of the beginning of dueling banjo's) I could only sit and frown. I wasn't part of the inside cool croud. I had once rented the VHS version of this commonly known film but an onslaught of Hollywood greats like "Twister" and "Under Siege 2 Dark Territory" kept me from watching it. My friends moved on but my coworkers now started throwing out lines to each other like it was a secret code. Now with a remastered DVD I finally am part of the club. I too can smirk and wince at "You have a real pretty mouth" and the immortal "Squeel like a pig!". Sure it was an endurance match to do so, but I can now crack the code of those around me. Deliverance for those of you like me, outside the know, is a movie of four city boys who get involved in a world far outside of their surroundings while trying to escape from the sterile society around them. No, this isn't some Billy Crystal/Jack Palance cow rustling movie (although I find the thought of Palance telling Crystal how pretty his mouth is quite invitingly disturbing) it is really a movie of the survival of humans who have forgotten what it is to survive. Jon Voight far outdoes his performance in Anaconda (another river movie) and Burt Reynolds proves he should have been Robin Hood instead of that hack, Costner. The plot begins to fall apart a bit when the four prove beyond a doubt that they don't have one Night Court episode's worth of legal experience and decide to do about the dumbest thing they can. After that we are treated to some of the worlds greatest injuries (possibly the next new show on Fox which ironically is tailored to all Deliverance-like folk) including a nasty compound fracture and one crazy dislocated arm. Eventually our friends find a peace at the end of the river...OR IS IT!!?? The DVD is a great remaster with a strange 2.35 to 1 16x9 enhanced picture that has a small side cropped off on the right and a newly mastered Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack that sounds pretty good for the most part but you can tell where the old sound ends and the newly remastered track starts. The disc includes a couple of making of featurettes and a trailer but no directors commentary. Overall this movie did for canoeing what Blair Witch did for camping. I don't want to do it either.