Can you imagine a priest taking a group of altar boys to see the movie “Deliverance?”
According to Tim Robbins, when he was an altar boy in New York City, at the age of ten or eleven, a priest at his church took him and some other altar boys into Times Square to see the R-rated film which contained a brutal homosexual rape scene.
Appearing on ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live Wednesday, Robbins was discussing his religious upbringing.
“Were you friendly with the priests at the church?” Kimmel asked with laughter from the crowd.
After the laughter died down, Robbins said, “There was one priest in particular, took the altar boys on a field trip to Times Square. We went to see a movie. It was 'Deliverance.'"
This elicited laughter and even some applause from the studio audience.
“You did not,” said a laughing Kimmel. “How old were you?”
“I was around ten or eleven,” Robbins answered as Kimmel again laughed.
“All I could think of after the movie was he must have thought ‘Deliverance’ meant religion or something,” Robbins continued. “Either that or he’s one of those, you know, those guys you hear about.”
“But there’s a shotgun on the movie poster of ‘Deliverance,’” protested Kimmel.
“Yeah, squeal like a pig,” replied Robbins. “It was a little scary. In retrospect, at the time it was a little weird.”
“He didn't mention anything about it at the end?” Kimmel asked. “Like ‘Don't tell your parents we went to see this particular movie?’”
“No, he didn’t say that,” Robbins answered.
“What was his name, do you remember?” asked Kimmel
“Father Dinter,” Robbins answered. “If you’re out there, what the hell were you thinking?”
Now for the record, Robbins was raised a Catholic and did grow up in New York City.
However, he was born October 16, 1958. “Deliverance” hit theaters on July 30, 1972, which means that he would have been thirteen or fourteen.
With that hole in the story exposed, one has to wonder if this happened at all given first the absurdity of a priest bringing a group of altar boys to see an R-rated film, but also that a Google search identified nothing on this suggesting that this is the first time Robbins mentioned this in public.
Given all the interviews this Academy Award-winning actor and outspoken activist has given over the years, is it possible that he's just never told this story before?
Or was Robbins just taking a shot at the Catholic church like so many in Hollywood do on a regular basis?