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Movie Review

Last Chance Detectives • Case 1: Mystery Lights of Navajo Mesa

Reviewed by: Dale and Karen Mason
STAFF WRITERS

Excellent!
Moviemaking Quality:

Primary Audience:
Ages 8-13
Genre:
Drama
Length:
46 min.

The Arizona desert sets a unique backdrop for this slightly scary mystery/adventure. From their “clubhouse” inside an old B-17 bomber that stands next to a roadside diner, the Last Chance Detectives (LCD) are four young teens who strive to solve their town’s small mysteries. However, their desire to get an important, hard-to-solve case leads them headlong into the middle of the biggest crime that the town’s sheriff has ever investigated.

Priceless Aztec artifacts have been stolen from the town library, and mysterious voices are heard on the B-17’s recently repaired radio. When the kids ride their all-terrain cycles into the desert to check things out, mysterious night time lights (designed to make viewers suspect UFO's) add a twist to the investigation. The thieves turn out to be smugglers, well hidden in an abandoned mine shaft, and the “UFO” is a supersecret, superquiet FBI helicopter.

The message of this film is: don’t hold onto grudges because you can’t let your feelings guide you. Rather, the Bible should be your guide. (In this case, Ephesians 4:32 is taken to heart by Mike, the leader of the LCD, after he has been wronged by his best friend.) Includes appearances by several Hollywood actors. Very good, but too intense for pre-K through 6-year-olds.

Year of Release—1994