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Higher Ground

4.6 out of 5 stars 53 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Set against the awesome backdrop of the Alaskan wilderness, a disillusioned FBI agent decides to retire and join his buddy running an air frieght business. When his friend is murdered and unjustly branded a bootlegger, the former agent sets out to clear his friend's name.

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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

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: John Denver, Paul Batten, Gary Chalk, Garry Davey, John Rhys-Davies
  • Directors: Robert Day
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Dubbed, Full Screen, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: French, English
  • Dubbed: French
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
  • 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: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001KEHAGC
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,960 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
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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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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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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Format: DVD
I got my husband to buy this for me, and I am so glad he did! Although he never shared the enthusiasm that I did as being one of John Denver's fans, he knew that I did. I have always been a HUGE fan of John Denver, and I had never heard of this movie, having lost touch with some of the films he made during a very busy period of my life. When I was looking through items pertaining to JD, I came across this film and my husband ordered it for me. I really enjoyed watching it tonight. I thought he did a great job and was rather convincing in the role. I thought the scenery was beautiful, and how well the script fit him, as he had matured from a mop-topped, granny glasses wearing singer/guitarist (whom I adored, incidentally) to a mature man who, though not a professional actor, did a fantastic job in this movie. I read some of the critics words tonight regarding his performance, and I don't understand how people can be so cruel. Considering some of the trash that has been made for television and film, and considering that John wasn't a trained actor - give the guy a break, why don't you? It is easy to criticize - It takes a deeper spirit to find the beauty in a thing, be it a song, a film, nature, a book, whatever! Suffice it to say, considering the way John left us, it was bittersweet to see him in an airplane for the film, and one can only imagine how he was as a pilot in reality. I noticed in the film that it mentioned that his father (in the film) had flown, and anyone who knows anything about JD, knows that his father was an air force pilot, and John was called an air force brat, and moved around a lot when he was growing up. Considering all that, one can truly appreciate the man he grew up to be and that enormous talent that he had.Read more ›
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I Love this movie one of John Denver's Best Acting Roles, This was supposed to be a pilot for a new TV Show but it did not make the cut very surprisingly because this is a great movie I thought. Other Movies with John Denver to check out are Foxfire, Walking Thunder, and Oh, God!
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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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