6.0/10
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60 user 12 critic

High Road to China (1983)

During WW1, an alcoholic American biplane pilot is hired by the spoiled daughter of an industrialist to find her father who disappeared in Asia.

Director:

Brian G. Hutton

Writers:

Jon Cleary (novel), Sandra Weintraub (screenplay) (as Sandra Weintraub Roland) | 1 more credit »

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From $2.99 on Prime Video

2 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tom Selleck ... Patrick O' Malley
Bess Armstrong ... Eve
Jack Weston ... Struts
Wilford Brimley ... Bradley Tozer
Robert Morley ... Bentik
Brian Blessed ... Suleman Khan
Cassandra Gava ... Alessa
Michael Sheard ... Charlie
Lynda La Plante ... Lina (as Lynda Marchal)
Timothy Carlton ... Officer
Shayur Mehta Shayur Mehta ... Ahmed
Terry Richards ... Ginger
Jeremy Child ... Silversmith
Peter Llewellyn Williams Peter Llewellyn Williams ... Franjten Khan
Dino Shafeek ... Satvinda (as Dino Shaffer)
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Storyline

A biplane pilot is saddled with a spoiled industrialist's daughter on a search for her missing father through Asia that eventually involves them in a struggle against a Chinese warlord. Written by Keith Loh <loh@sfu.ca>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Take the high road to adventure! See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | Yugoslavia | Hong Kong

Language:

English | German

Release Date:

18 March 1983 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Cesta do Cíny See more »

Filming Locations:

England, UK See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$19,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,156,049, 20 March 1983, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$28,400,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$50,000,000, 31 December 1983
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The machine guns on Dorothy and Lillian are Lewis Automatic Machine Rifles, chambered in .303 British caliber. Although the weapon was invented by an American Army captain, it was adopted by almost every other Allied army in WW1 prior to being adopted by the US in 1917. The guns were inexpensive and reliable, explaining why O'Malley could afford a pair. See more »

Goofs

The wreck of first the deHavilland burned and the engine fell from its mounts. Both deHavillands were shown flying in the film and were powered with the V-8 Curtiss OX-5 powerplant. The engine seen in the burned airplane was an inverted inline 6 cylinder, most likely a Liberty 12A six cylinder. See more »

Quotes

Evie: Which one of you boys would like the honour of loaning me an airplane.
RAF Officer: The RAF would be proud to loan Miss Tozer an aircraft.
Evie: [Blows him a kiss] I'll have it back in two weeks!
RAF Officer: Oh wait a minute, I thought you meant just for the night. Sorry.
[Silence]
Evie: Anyone Else?
[Pause]
Evie: No more heroes? So long boys.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Never Tell Me Never (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

Charleston
(uncredited)
Written by Cecil Mack and James P. Johnson
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A Good Old-Fashioned Escape Movie
5 August 2001 | by director1616See all my reviews

The best thing about "High Road to China" is that it does not try to change the world by making a social statement. It does not try to do anything but be an escape for moviegoers. Is it a perfect film? No. But this is one of my favorite films because it does just that - it allows me to escape. This much under-appreciated movie tells an excellent story: a rich brat living in the Roaring 20's hires a flying ace to find her father in a remote part of China. From a cinemagraphic point-of-view, it is a very good-looking film. Bess Armstrong never looked better on screen. And although her character of Eve Tozer is not always believable, I liked her as the rich brat who thinks everything has its price. I was never a Tom Selleck fan, but as Patrick O'Malley, he makes the perfect flying daredevil - a hard drinker who has trouble showing that he has a heart. The late Jack Weston, who was one of the better character actors of our modern times, is perfectly cast as the sidekick mechanic Struts. And the late Robert Morley provides good comic relief in the midst of being the heavy.

The movie simply looks good with its gorgeous locations and colors. The flying sequences - especially the dogfight between O'Malley and the German ace (complete with references to the famous Red Baron) is first-rate, and the battle scenes are shot very well. The pace of the film is not always even, but one sequence after another has our protagonists in some dire predicament. And it is fun watching them try and get out of each one. It should have done better at the box office, for the film is still a favorite of cable movie channels and people who discover it on video for the first time. I would recommend this film to anyone, because it is simply a little gem and a wonderful film for movie buffs who wish to escape.


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