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Five 1970s Thrillers That Still Chill Us Today

Movie critics repeatedly swoon over the 1970s.

It's not for love of disco balls or those tacky wide lapel suits, mind you. The decade let film artists flower, long before terms like "franchise," "reboot" and "reimagining" handcuffed the industry.

Those film critics have a point. And that's particularly true with some of the decade's best thrillers. They were gritty, raw and realistic. The best of the best still stand tall today.

Spring may be here, but during the next rainy day why not revisit these '70s thrillers?

5. "The Taking of Pelham One Two Three"

The 2009 remake starring Denzel Washington and John Travolta did one thing well. It made the 1974 original look even better by comparison.

And why not? Casting a craggy Walter Matthau as your unlikely New York hero is a masterstroke. The tale of thugs who hold a subway train hostage for cash is as riveting now as it was back then. The film's unique Big Apple details enhance an already outstanding yarn.

4. "Deliverance"

Four friends embark on a trip through some rugged American terrain. What they encounter changes them forever. This John Boorman classic served up the iconic "Dueling Banjos" sequence. That's just the appetizer. The thrills build slowly, but soon Jon Voight, Burt Reynolds and co. are running for their lives.

"Deliverance" understands the power of isolation and how to play up the narrative's tricky culture clash. Boorman captures the sights and sounds of the Georgia wilderness, making it another character in the efficiently told film.