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Higher Ground (1988)

John Denver , Paul Batten , Robert Day  |  PG |  DVD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)

List Price: $14.99
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Product Details

  • Actors: John Denver, Paul Batten, Gary Chalk, Garry Davey, John Rhys-Davies
  • Directors: Robert Day
  • Format: Color, Dubbed, Full Screen, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, French
  • Dubbed: French
  • Region: Region 1 encoding (US and Canada only)
    PLEASE NOTE:
    Some Region 1 DVDs may contain Regional Coding Enhancement (RCE). Some, but not all, of our international customers have had problems playing these enhanced discs on what are called "region-free" DVD players. For more information on RCE, click .
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: January 27, 2009
  • Run Time: 96 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001KEHAGC
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #106,183 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

Singer-songwriter John Denver sought to reboot his career and carve out a new role for himself as an action hero with Higher Ground. This TV movie, clearly intended as a pilot for a possible series, stars Denver as former FBI agent Jim Clayton, who goes to Alaska when the incompetence of his superiors at the bureau becomes unbearable. In the vast wilderness, he teams up with an old friend named Rick, who has an air freight business. But Rick soon turns up dead and it's up to Jim to clear his friend's name of bootlegging charges and bring peace to Rick's wife and son. Along the way, of course, there's an occasion for Denver to pull out his guitar and exercise his soaring tenor. The plot and overall quality is standard television fare of the 1980s: The bad guys are obviously bad, a young boy needs to regain his faith in humanity, and solving the case doesn't involve detective work so much as looking earnest and getting into awkwardly choreographed fist fights. Still, Denver's sincere and likable personality comes through and fans will enjoy his performance. Also starring John Rhys-Davies (Raiders of the Lost Ark, the Lord of the Rings trilogy) and Richard Masur (Risky Business). --Bret Fetzer

Product Description

John Denver stars in this dramatic thriller set against the awesome backdrop of the Alaskan wilderness. A disillusioned FBI agent decides to retire and join his buddy running an air freight business. When his friend is murdered and unjustly branded a bootlegger, the former agent sets out to clear his friend's name.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars John Denver Gets Tough in Alaska December 27, 2008
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I'm happy that another one of John Denver's TV movies is being released officially rather than a backroom under the counter thing. He made some genuine films and this is another one that will thrill the JD enthusiast.

Set in LA and Alaska, John takes on the bootleggers of Alaska after becoming frustrated with corporate FBI procedures. He turns gritty and still keeps that John Denver appeal that we all grew up with. While this movie was released 20 years ago on CBS, it withstands those two decades as genuine entertainment. He only sings one song but it is part of the movie's plot and not a solo cutaway.

Get it while you can, it probably will be a limited release and end up on ebay at some point.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A "must-have" for John Denver fans February 5, 2009
Format:DVD
I eagerly awaited delivery of this newly released DVD. It arrived in yesterday's mail and I watched it last night. I was truly surprised with John's performance. Admittedly, he was not a great actor, but a substantially good one. Of his films that I've seen, this was his best. The casting is superb; the acting well directed with fine performances all around. The scenery is magnificent and John sings and plays. A perfect evening of entertainment.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars John Denver Fans Will Love This One August 5, 2009
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I bought this dvd partly because i'm a big John Denver fan & partly because the reviews of it here on Amazon were overwhelmingly good. I unfortunately missed it back in 1988 when it was on tv but I am really glad I took a chance & bought it cuz it's one of Denver's best movies. It's also a real treat to see him playing a former FBI agent in the wilds of Alaska who while investigating the murder of his best friend & partner, gets to fly around in cool seaplanes as part of the shipping business that he's working in. His investigation rubs a few locals & the sherriff (John Rys-Davies) the wrong way at first but they quickly start to see that his character is smart, tenacious & not someone to be taken lightly. Along with the good story there is teriffic scenery & a good cast as well. You even get to see John sing & play guitar during a party scene. The highlight of this film isn't the music, story or gorgeous scenery though. It's actually getting to see John do the thing he loved to do the most when he wasn't entertaining all us lucky fans, and that was flying airplanes. Obviously there is a bittersweet quality to this but it's still great to see John having a great time & know all the while, that at the very least, he died doing the thing he most loves to do.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars JOHN DENVER February 26, 2009
Format:DVD
This little telefilm is a must have for John Denver fans. If, for no other reason, it is one of the few films he ever did. Otherwise, there is not much about it that is worth anything. The story isn't bad. The scenic shots of Alaska are stunning. It is a big budget production with a fairly solid cast. The direction is weak and unimaginative and the writing appalling. The entire film makes you wince given the words that these actors have to struggle with. However, for JD fans, it's a chance to spend some time with him. The character he plays is really John Denver as an FBI agent. "Oh God" gave us JD when he was much younger. This film gives you a more mature JD. Aside from "Oh God", "Foxfire" with Jessica Tandy is a much better film with John. The, as yet to be released in DVD telefilm "The Christmas Gift" is also a better choice to see JD. He's a pretty natural actor and, in "The Christmas Gift", he sings a lovely verse from one of his more contemporary songs, "Love Again" - an added bonus.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars John Denver is fantastic in a serious role October 14, 2009
Format:DVD
This is a a great treat for anyone and a must see for fans of John Denver. He's looking great, showing off his excellent acting abilities against the backdrop of beautiful Alaska and is shown doing what he loved almost better than anything; flying. It is exciting to see him in fight scenes, a sharp contrast to his gentle nature and beautiful songs. Even peace loving people sometimes have to stand up for what is right.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Higher Ground w/ John Denver June 10, 2009
Format:DVD
It was a very interesting movie it had a lot of beautiful scenes of Alaska and a great plot.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great addition to John Denver collections. March 28, 2009
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I really enjoyed this movie and can recommend it for anyone whether they are a John Denver fan or not. The acting was great and the scenery even better.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Too real at times January 31, 2013
Format:DVD
I was once in a fundamentalist congregation, but happily not as stringent as this one. Certain scenes did serve as flashbacks for me, however. I am ordering this today after having seen some of it on TV last night. Ironically, I am experiencing a similar angst while now in a "mainstream" denomination. Some of the challenges of Corrine reminded me of the introspection currently going on within me. In my case, rather than suppression of intellect, there is a suppression of those who are not seminarians or ministers - though the same Holy Spirit resides in each of us with the same potential for guidance. I strongly related to Corrine's attempts to "share" and being stifled by leaders. In mainstream I find inconsistencies between The Word of God and Man's Traditions, with the latter seeming to outweigh the former. (Sigh.) One good thing about fundamentalism is the fervent study of God's Word. In mainstream, there seems to be more attention to programs, plans, tradition, egos, everything but the prevailing Word. (Alas.) I'm getting the film because I'd like to see it all the way through and study her findings and interactions a little closer. Maybe some of my questions will answered.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it
Being a John Denver fan and I am happy to get anything I can about him, I miss his music
Published 2 days ago by Linda
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as I remembered...
DVD arrived in excellent condition as advertised. Packaging was a
simple thin bubble wrap envelope but DVD was unharmed. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Donald White
5.0 out of 5 stars John Denver is great in this movie
I bought this for a gift. The person I bought it for has all JD's music and dvd's. He is easy to listen to and makes sense with his lyrics.
Published 5 months ago by CARRIE
5.0 out of 5 stars GOOD ARMCHAIR TRAVEL
Anything that takes me somewhere else (Alaska) and teaches me about it, I'm in. Denver's a little slow and stiff, but his essential goodness comes through.
Published 6 months ago by Michael Stein
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome flying footage
Beautiful scenery and flying scenes. Anyone who is a fan of John Denver will like this movie. Just wish he had made more movies in the far north.
Published 8 months ago by John R Harman Jr
5.0 out of 5 stars john denvers biggest fan!
I hav all the movies or music of john denver.But he is really GREAT! I like it because He does not sing a song after every scene!
Published 9 months ago by John Eldridge
5.0 out of 5 stars A must have for John Denver collectors
John Denver made this pilot for a television series relatively late in his career, and it is fun to see him in an entirely different role, hunting down the bad guys and singing. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Zbodhimama
5.0 out of 5 stars GREAT MOVIE
I like the movie a lot and it is one I havn't seen before, I know of the song a Higher Ground, but didn't know it was a movie.
Published 12 months ago by DONALD ROBERT CHAMBERLAIN
5.0 out of 5 stars Subtle and underappreciated
First time director, terrific effort.
No looking down, just looking at a subject thoroughly.
Vera Farmiga Is outstanding and real.
Published 12 months ago by My stuff
5.0 out of 5 stars My rating of HIgher Ground
I bought the DVD because John Denver was in it and I was a fan of his - still am, even though he is dead - the movie was good and it held my interest. Read more
Published 15 months ago by Deborah J. Martzall
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