Today’s Prayer Focus

Last Chance Detectives: Case 2: Legend of the Desert Bigfoot

Reviewed by: Cheryl Sneeringer

Moral Rating: Excellent!
Moviemaking Quality:
Primary Audience: Ages 8-13
Genre: Mystery/Drama
Length: 53 min.
Year of Release: 1995
USA Release:
Featuring Ryan Calhoun, Davin Carey, Crystle Lightning, David Netter, James Callahan
Director Robert Vernon
Distributor Tyndale House Video

Annoyed by his dog’s incessant barking, a grizzled old rancher walks out of his ranch house into the desert night, and is attacked by a terrifying creature. When he claims to have encountered the legendary Bigfoot monster, the townspeople scoff in disbelief. He is, after all, notorious for drinking too much. But later, when young Mike Fowler and his grandfather drive their tow truck into the desert to rescue a stranded motorist, they find evidence of something strange—the metal doors on a U-Haul truck have been ripped apart as if by huge claws, a barbed-wire fence has been pulled apart, and a swatch of coarse dark hair looks like it came from a very unusual creature.

When a group of campers also report sighting Bigfoot, Mike and his three teen-aged friends (who call themselves the Last Chance Detectives) decide to investigate. Along the way they encounter danger, deception, and treachery.

Focus on the Family films has done an outstanding job here; this film is excellent in every way. It is fast-paced, suspenseful, and action-packed. The plot is intelligent; the photography is excellent; the acting is first-rate, and dialog is crisp and believable. This is as good an adventure film as any I’ve seen in theaters. It may be a little too scary for very young children, but it will be a real treat to kids eight and up, and it will absolutely hold the interest of Mom and Dad, too.

The film is more than just a good yarn; it presents an important moral principle. Early on, the teenagers are faced with an ethical dilemma. They find a dog that has been neglected by his owner, and in order to save the dog, they take him from his owner. Was it the right thing to do? Was it stealing? Do the ends justify the means? The situation they encounter is very realistic, because often good kids will do foolish (and wrong) things in order to accomplish what they believe is a good result. The film teaches that we are responsible to do what is right, and to leave the results to God. What else could they have done?

There is a good moral lesson taught in this film, but it’s not delivered in a preachy way. “Legend of Desert Big Foot” is an excellent springboard for discussion of what it means to trust God and do what is right (Prov. 3:5-6; Psalm 37:3).

I highly recommend this movie. It is suspenseful, entertaining, thought-provoking, and it honors God. What a delight!

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