March 25, 2002

Starring Ned “Weeeea Weeeea” Beatty!

Sorry, that’s a habit I picked up from my college film professor – I am unable to refer to Ned Beatty in any other way – he’s not Lex Luthor’s sidekick and although I liked him in Ed and His Dead Mother, Ned will always make me think of hillbilly buttsex.

Ah, the subject of hillbilly buttsex…although popularized by Quentin Tarantino in Pulp Fiction, its true roots are in the Georgia back-country, hiding among the gorges and riverbanks, not in an L.A. Pawnshop. I have to wonder though, was that a banjo I saw hanging on Zed and Maynard’s wall?

You sure got a purty mouth, boy....

Because of this film, the sound of banjos has become synonomous with hillbillies, moonshine and anal violation. I once dated a guy in High School that played Dueling Banjos on the stereo as we were driving to the movies – to see Amos and Andy, no less. Even though I had not seen Deliverance at that point in my life, I knew enough to not have a second date.

Hillbillies and banjo music have been enjoying a rennaisance these days, mostly due to the success of O Brother, Where Art Thou? Hillbilly buttsex, however, is not.

I never noticed until last night, how similar Deliverance is to another of Boorman’s films – The Emerald Forest. Of course, the natives of The Emerald Forest aren’t so inclined towards buttsex, but the Markham’s struggle against the river and the natives echoed that of the men of Deliverance. The theme of Industrial Destruction also ran heavily through both films, though the messages were very different – the destruction of the native people of the rainforest was depicted as tragic, while the destruction of the Hillbilliies’ natural habitat was seen as a godsend…I could go on for hours about these two films, side by side, but I won’t…although it makes me wonder if there were some similar elements that I missed in Excalibur…

As a side note, Russ hates this movie – he flat out refused to watch it again last night. Not that I mind – I should have been more concerned about the ex-boyfriend who did like the movie…enough to pick it for our film series, anyway.

This is the first film that I have been able to review that was a part of the doomed No Elvis Film Series. It was a small little venture ran mainly by myself, my ex and Professor Sean. As you can see from the flyer above, it was about as serious as a barrel of syphilitic monkeys – and just as fun! I hope to be able to review more of our picks, mostly so I can have an excuse to show off our wacky publicity posters.


Year – 1972
Rating – R
Runtime – 109 minutes
Genre – Thriller, Book Adaptation
Director(s) – John Boorman
Writer(s) – James Dickey
Actor(s) – Burt Reynolds, Ned Beatty, Jon Voight
BOB Rating – Three BOBs
Favorite Quote – "Sometimes you have to lose yourself 'fore you can find anything." - Lewis (Burt Reynolds)