Vera Farmiga (Down to the Bone, The Departed, Up in the Air) plays Corinne, a young wife and mother whose journey of self-discovery throws a tight-knit community off-kilter. Growing up a teenage misfit in the 1960s, young Corinne (played by Farmiga's sister Taissa) settles down early with her high school sweetheart, local band guitarist Ethan. When the new family is saved from a near-tragedy, Corinne and Ethan discover and incorporate a new sense of spirituality into their lives. However, over the next 20 years, small injustices accumulate and chip away at Corinne's certainty. Higher Ground depicts one woman's transitioning belief system over a lifetime, and how a crisis of faith can come about in the absence of any single crisis at all.
Farmiga's patient filmmaking imbues her epic story with a contemplative introspection, making her directorial debut a personal study on the nature of doubt—whether it's of religion, leadership, or self. Cementing her as a bold new directing talent, Farmiga's adaption of Carolyn S. Briggs' memoir This Dark World is an authentic and resonant rumination on a woman who learns that no matter how many times she loses her footing, she has within herself all that's necessary to get to a higher place.