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Little Tenderfoot (07/17/2007)

released: Jul 17, 2007

description: The counsel of village elders peers into an infant's crib, discussing the best way to handle the white child prophesied to end their tribe. The argument is made to abandon the child in the woods, the majority of the elders agree that they must follow the guidelines of the prophecy and raise the child as their own. However, as the elders leave to discuss trickle down economics in their own smoking tent, two shadowy figures sneak in and steal the child away, ultimately throwing the defenseless baby into the river.

A bear (who sadly recently lost her own cub) sees all this happen and swims through the river to the child, pulling him just as he was about to go over the treacherous falls. The bear takes the baby back to her own cave and raises him as her own. Sixteen years pass, and the boy sets out to explore the rest of the world.

In a nearby town, the Mayor and Prospector Dundee Jones plot the takeover of the American Indian village. They feel fairly confident that there is gold there, and intend to take all of it for themselves. The two men see no one who will stand in the way of their plan, despite the protests of the Mayor's daughter, Clementine. The Mayor attempts to appease Clementine with a bauble, and she marches out of the house only to see a boy in bearskin pants approaching two children. The boy takes an immediate liking to Clementine and she spends the day teaching him about the world outside a bear's cave. As the day draws to an end, he finally introduces himself as Tenderfoot. She takes him home, where her father allows him to sleep on the porch with the dog, Curly Joe.

Meanwhile, Prospector Jones and his band of no-good men plan their attack on the American Indian village. He tells them they will ride at sunset the next day, and despite his instructions to not drink and get a good night's sleep, the men set off to cause trouble.

The next morning, Tenderfoot leaves the Mayor's house and walks home to the bear cave. He stops as he realizes the mouth of the cave is littered with beer bottles. He enters and finds his bear mother's body riddled with bullets and the names of Prospector Jones' men carved into it. Her head has been mounted on the wall. Tenderfoot buries his adoptive mother and heads back to the town, hell bent on revenge.

At the Mayor's house, he and Prospector Jones finalize their plans as Clementine bursts in again and begs them not to attack the village. When asked for motivation, Prospector Jones discloses that he is simply a bad, selfish person. To support his point, he shares that his men killed a bear for no good reason last night which Tenderfoot, standing right outside the door, overhears. He barges into the room and demands justice. However, a gun is immediately pulled on him. A standoff commences, and finally, the fired bullet grazes the side of Tenderfoot's head. He falls, and Prospector Jones escapes and heads to the American Indian village. The Mayor holds Tenderfoot at gunpoint.

Prospector Jones and his men ride to the village and immediately set to destroying everything they can. The counsel of elders remain oblivious, discussing the Asian market in their smoking tent. Simultaneously, Tenderfoot overpowers the Mayor, apologizes, and then rushes to the village. He easily takes out Prospector Jones's men and attempts to exact his revenge, but the Prospector's neck is amazingly sturdy. The two struggle, seemingly at an impasse, until out of nowhere, a bauble strikes Prospector Jones in the head. He falls, and Tenderfoot takes this opportunity to finish the job. Tenderfoot thanks Clementine for her help and the two of them head back home.

The counsel of elders then emerges from their tent, shocked at the destruction. They see and immediately recognize the white child of the prophecy from sixteen years earlier. The elders call to Tenderfoot and explain that his place is with them. Tenderfoot and Clementine happily begin a new life together in the rebuilt village.

cast & crew:

Directed by . . . Jason Chin
 
Bear Mother . . . Jorin Garguilo
Bill . . . Sean Kelley
Bones . . . Amy Verdon
Carl . . . Amy Verdon
Clementine . . . Mel Evans
Curly Joe . . . Kristen Studard
Evil Joe . . . Michael Johnson
Friendly Child #1 . . . Amy Verdon
Friendly Child #2 . . . Colleen Breen
Mayor Leroy . . . Michael Johnson
Prospector Dundee Jones . . . Sean Kelley
Shadowy Figure #1 . . . Colleen Breen
Shadowy Figure #2 . . . Michael Johnson
Tenderfoot . . . Bob Ladewig
Tex . . . Colleen Breen
Tex II . . . Kristen Studard
Village Elder #1 . . . Colleen Breen
Village Elder #2 . . . Mel Evans
Village Elder #3 . . . Michael Johnson

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