6.5/10
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The Other Side of Heaven (2001)

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John Groberg, a farm kid from Idaho Falls, crosses an ocean to become a missionary in the remote and exotic Tongan islands during the 1950s.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... John Groberg
... Jean Sabin
... Feki (as Joseph Folau)
... Kelepi
... Lavania
Alvin Fitisemanu ... Tomasi
... Kuli
... Asi
Apii McKinley ... Noli
Paki Cherrington ... Minister (as Te Paki Cherrington)
Jeremy Birchall ... Edward
Ross Duncan ... John's Father
Maggie Harper ... John's Mother
... Photographer
Brian Richards ... Crowd Member #1
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Storyline

John H. Groberg, a middle class kid from Idaho Falls, crosses the Pacific to become a Mormon missionary in the remote and exotic Tongan island kingdom during the 1950's. He leaves behind a loving family and the true love of his life, Jean. Through letters and musings across the miles, John shares his humbling and sometimes hilarious adventures with "the girl back home", and her letters buoy up his spirits in difficult times. John must struggle to overcome language barriers, physical hardship and deep-rooted suspicion to earn the trust and love of the Tongan people he has come to serve. Throughout his adventure-filled three years on the islands, he discovers friends and wisdom in the most unlikely places. John H. Groberg's Tongan odyssey will change his life forever. Written by Mary Jane Jones

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

idaho | love | missionary | 1950s | mormon | See All (37) »

Taglines:

An ordinary boy and his journey among extraordinary people who would change his life forever. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for thematic elements and brief disturbing images | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

12 April 2002 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Eye of the Storm  »

Filming Locations:

 »

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Box Office

Budget:

$7,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$55,765, 16 December 2001, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$4,720,371

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$4,760,014, 12 March 2003
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| (Dolby 5.1)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Deseret Book, the publisher of the biography on which the movie is based, never previously sold film rights to any of their books. Deseret Book is owned by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and John Groberg was one of the presiding elders of the Church at the time of the sale. There was, therefore, a great concern as to how the Church would be portrayed which had to be satisfied before the rights were sold. The deal was completed, in large measure, because several key members of the production team were active members of the Church. See more »

Goofs

The film starts with a dance at Brigham Young University in 1953. A couple sing the song "Rip it Up". That song was first recorded by Little Richard in 1956. See more »

Quotes

John Groberg: There is a connection between heaven and earth. Finding that connection gives meaning to everything, including death. Losing that connection makes everything lose meaning, including life.
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Connections

Referenced in The Field Is White (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Rip it Up
Written by Robert 'Bumps' Blackwell and John Marascalco
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User Reviews

 
Nice story, limited audience
22 June 2003 | by See all my reviews

I really did enjoy this film, although it is certainly no cinematic masterpiece, however I do think it would be of fairly limited appeal to a non-Mormon audience. It is a fairly slow and simple story, done fairly simplistically, but not without its charms. To really appreciate it I suspect one would need to have some background knowledge of the key elements of the movie. I was certainly surprised to see it as a Disney movie and was mortified to see other posters suggesting that the advertising for the film was less than forthcoming on the true nature of the storyline. For what it is, its very entertaining and uplifting, but I would strongly suspect that this film will not appeal to a wide audience. My Vote 7/10 (although I unashamedly admit my own bias)


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