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Initial post: May 4, 2007 7:56:58 AM PDT
learjetpilot says:
WHO ever gave premission in writing for this piece of junk to be done????

Posted on Oct 6, 2009 5:31:23 AM PDT
M. Braun says:
First I want to say that I am a HUGE John Denver fan. But I have read the reviews and I am shocked to see all of the negative reviews on this movie. Many of these people don't want to see the bad things that happened in John's life, but you have to remember....life is not full of roses.

I read John's book and I was dissapointed to hear that he was a drug addict and an alcoholic....but it happened! His life was not perfect, deal with it.

I did like the movie, it was a story that was shown by the eyes of Annie and his friend Hal. All of these critics on this site did not KNOW John personally and just don't want to remember him as human with flaws like everyone else.

Posted on Oct 6, 2009 5:33:26 AM PDT
M. Braun says:
First I want to say that I am a HUGE John Denver fan. But I have read the reviews and I am shocked to see all of the negative reviews on this movie. Many of these people don't want to see the bad things that happened in John's life, but you have to remember....life is not full of roses.

I read John's book and I was dissapointed to hear that he was a drug addict and an alcoholic....but it happened! His life was not perfect, deal with it.

I did like the movie, it was a story that was shown by the eyes of Annie and his friend Hal. All of these critics on this site did not KNOW John personally and just don't want to remember him as human with flaws like everyone else.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 6, 2009 1:31:28 PM PDT
M. Strube says:
Michael,
A depiction of John's drinking, cheating and occasional drug use is not what people are objecting to. John Denver described all those things in his autobiography "Take Me Home" and are no secret. Those of us who have taken time to really study him and his life know that the depiction of his character in this movie is largely inaccurate. I've read his autobiography, seen scores of interviews, TV shows, movies, home movies, concerts and environmental symposiums. I can assure you that John Denver was NOT a weak, insecure, wimpy little man as depicted in this movie. He was ambitious, hugely talented, self assured, generally kind and gracious, but if you were dishonest with him, he was a force to be reckoned with. Not to mention attractive! "Kona" said it perfectly. Lowe looks exactly like Dana Carvey in "Wayne's World"!
John Denver was enormously complex but didn't always successfully balance his career with his private life. The resulting chaos sometimes wreaked havoc with his family and colleagues. Should this be in the movie? Of course. He was human with human frailties, like us all. The beautiful music and appreciation of nature will be his enduring legacy. Let's not tarnish his memory with weak, inaccurate depictions of his character. See for yourself. Check out Youtube for interviews of the real John Denver. I'd recommend starting with interviews by Oprah.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 7, 2009 5:52:38 AM PDT
M. Braun says:
I guess you would know more about his personal life than his wife and one of his best friends...

I have seen his interviews, and I have read his book....the movie is pretty accurate and I Lowe is a dead ringer for the young John Denver.
OJ Simpson had some good interviews, does that make his character good?

The fact that Denver was addicted to alcohol, drugs, love and fame proves that he had a weak character....he was strong in things that he could try to control like the wildlife and environment, but when it came to people...he had problems. He is human, and that movie shows his human side....it is too bad that you are too star struck to realize that.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 7, 2009 4:12:15 PM PDT
M. Strube says:
Michael,
I used the wrong word. I didn't mean "character" in the context of "content of his character". I should have used "mannerisms". Sorry for the poor choice of words. I don't object at all to the depiction of John Denver's problems and frailties. That does belong in any accurate story of his life. The main flaw in my opinion (and I believe this is the main objection of the other negative reviews) was Lowe's acting and lack of physical similarity to Denver. Lowe looked nothing like young JD, even with a wig and glasses. While I never cared for the long hair, granny glasses look, JD had a strong chin and jaw line, a wide smile and high cheek bones. Lowe has not one of those features.
In a biopic film, the `flavor' of the main subject is important. If they can't match the appearance better, they should at least try to get the mannerisms down. They did neither. Lowe's mannerisms were pathetic. JD was not stammering wimp. It ruined the film for me because I couldn't buy into Lowe as JD.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 8, 2009 5:24:15 AM PDT
M. Braun says:
Wow, talk about nit picking.....I guess nobody would be a better then if John played his own role.....Chad Lowe did a very good job and even though the wig was not perfect, Chad looked very much like the young JD....as much as he could. It was a made for tv movie, probably with a not so big budget....they probably couldn't get any huge actors to play the role (though I couldn't think of anyone who could pull off a look alike that you want).

How did you get that he was a stammering wimp from that film? I got that he was a man that was torn by his love for his music and his love for his wife Annie....and he struggled to realize that he couldn't keep both. Pretty much like his real life problems. But I guess not all of us can see the deeper meaning of the film.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 8, 2009 12:37:14 PM PDT
M. Strube says:
I'm not nitpicking. Even today, JD has an unfair reputation for being "uncool", a reputation that did not help his career and this movie exaggerates and perpetuates that image. Early in his career, JD told his audiences funny stories of his school days when he was a shy boy who had a hard time getting a date. He adopted a self deprecating underdog image for entertainment purposes. He later dropped that image but most people don't remember that.
Denver explains in his book that his stage persona was an invention and nothing like his real personality. He described himself as ambitious and extremely serious, probably too serious, but Lowe used the underdog image of Denver's early stage persona in the offstage scenes and exaggerated it with stammering and whining. We can see in interviews that JD was intelligent, eloquent, thoughtful and attractive; traits that were ignored and even contradicted in this movie. It would have been more interesting to the audience to learn that Denver was very different from the stage persona that they remember. Lowe's characterization didn't even come close to the real man.
In addition, there is no hint of the immense scope of Denver's worldwide fame or his achievements for the environment. The movie chooses to focus on only one facet of his life. That would have been fine if the lead character had been interesting, like the real man was. As it was, the movie was a huge disappointment because it could have been so much better. Is it too much to ask for a movie about John Denver that shows some of the charm and achievements that captured the hearts of millions, even while it shows some of his faults? This movie failed in this completely.

Posted on Oct 8, 2009 5:32:19 PM PDT
M. Braun says:
Now I am thinking that you didn't see the movie....most of what you are complaining about not being in the movie is in the movie. I think that you are thinking about Oh-God.....

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 8, 2009 6:21:41 PM PDT
M. Strube says:
I have the movie on DVD. I've watched it twice in my life. Once, years before I read JDs book or watched many hours of JD's TV shows, interviews, etc. I confess that the first time I thought it was ok because I didn't know better. I watched it again after reading his book and watching many hours of interviews, shows ect... The second time, I found it to be extremely inaccurate. What did I miss? As painful as it may be, I'm be willing to watch it again, sigh.... to see what I missed. Let me know and I'll give it another chance. I'll be happy to let you know if I change my mind.

Before I do, please let me know if you are related or are in business with anyone attached to this movie. If you are a friend of Chad Lowe, I'm out of here!

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 9, 2009 5:55:46 AM PDT
M. Braun says:
LOL! I am not related to Lowe or the movie.

I have been a huge fan of JD since I was a kid and my dad used to play his songs on the record player. It was a very sad day almost exactly 12 years ago (3 more days), when his plane plunged into the ocean off the coast of California. The world had lost one of the greatest humanitarians and wildlife enthusiast I have ever seen. I read his book and was saddened by his struggles in life and his experiments with drugs and cheating on his wife were all dissapointing, but his efforts to keep going and making music from the heart and saving the wildlife overshadows his downfalls.

We know that the movie had been helped by Annie and one of John's best friends, so there has to be truth in there, weather you know it or not. I do not recall any whining in the movie, I saw someone struggling to keep his work and his love together.

Posted on Oct 9, 2009 5:30:51 PM PDT
M. Strube says:
I've always loved JDs music too, but it wasn't until a few years ago that I read his book and discovered the wealth of videos of his shows, interviews etc that are available. The more I learned about him, the more I appreciated the meaning of his music and the complexities of his personality. He was so much more interesting than they showed in this movie.

The story in the movie is definitely skewed in Annie's favor. She is portrayed as a stunning woman, smarter than her dorky, thoughtless, train wreck of a husband. I saw the real Denvers interviewed on Donahue. You could see which Denver really had pizzazz. In JDs book, Annie didn't help the situation. She refused to come on the road with him and when he came home he felt like a stranger in his own home. Really - what did she expect would happen?

Oct 12 is nearly here. Next year, I'm planning to go to Aspen for John Denver week. I couldn't make it this year. You ought to come if you've never gone. You get to meet many of John's friends. His mother, Erma and brother Ron come each year.

Posted on Oct 10, 2009 5:50:26 PM PDT
M. Strube says:
As promised, I watched the movie again. Can't say I enjoyed it. The DVD cover says "He soared Higher than the Rockies". So corny! Then, strangely, the movie spends most of the time showing what a personal train wreck he was. They did show JD touring Europe and Africa and mentioned the Soviet Union and China trips although they got the timing of some of those trips wrong.
Not as much whining as I remembered. Just minor things like "All I want is someone to believe in me" and complaining about Dad not telling him he was proud of him.
But they do seem intent of portraying him as very insecure. In one scene, they showed his hands trembling violently before going on stage. All performers get nervous, but that was over the top. He wrote in his book that he lived to perform and felt very comfortable on stage. He wasn't that insecure, if at all, so why did they portray him that way?
Case in point - excessive stammering: These are actual lines from the movie, verbatim. Not only is the stammering uncharacteristic, but the lines are just awful and depict him as a fool.
Auditioning for Mitchell Trio: "Oh a, a. I'm sorry about that.. that part Mr. Okun, I was I was a little bit flat there. I guess I'm just not used to singing in a.. in a studio."
2nd conversation with Annie: " Hi, Hi, I'm, I'm, I'm John Denver. We, uh, we had a talk, well.. after that concert a few months back."

Annie: "A talk?"
John: "Well yes. You said Hi back. That's kind of like a talk right? I uh got your address from one of the guys at the uh at the frat house."
Note: He didn't drive 100 miles to ask her out. He called first. He wasn't that desperate. Why do they insist on making him such an insecure, weak character? The stammering and "uhs" go on and on!! For the first half of the movie, Lowe doesn't get through a single sentence without stammering, like he's mentally retarded.
Chainsaw episode. John is drinking and sad about his father's death. Annie kindly said "I know how you are feeling" and John goes nuts with the chainsaw. Not true! The chainsaw episode was completely inaccurate and the scene is white washed on both parts. The scene makes her look like she was just being kind and he went berserk. Not the way it happened! The real incident was premeditated, more violent and he was not sorry except that he scared her. At issue was a long list of hurts but the flashpoint was the trees that she had cut down. He never intended to scare her, just leave a message: You don't mess with John Denver's trees.
The song he wrote for Annie at that time of their marriage "Seasons of the Heart" was not a peace offering. "I can't believe my heart when it implies that you're not there. Love is the reason that I came here and love is the reason I must go" was his way of saying "I'm out of here"! The scene makes John look like a pathetic loser.
They rearranged the timeline of his life whenever it was convenient. They showed him singing "This Old Guitar" before he ever met Annie so the lines "The Old Guitar brought me my lovely lady" make no sense. Also he was dropped by RCA, 1986, four years after divorce his from Annie. His career was still going strong when his marriage to Annie failed.
John did not write "Love Again" for Cassandra. That was released in Nov. 1984 John didn't meet Cassandra until 1986. It was written for a friend who was getting married.
These are just some of the reasons that so many of his fans hate this movie.
The images of John in his LongEZ are heart rending. That part they got right.
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Participants:  3
Total posts:  13
Initial post:  May 4, 2007
Latest post:  Oct 10, 2009

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