What is it about Western PA that leads to so many Bigfoot movies being shot here? This is at least the second in as many years, but A Wish for Giants is unlike any cryptozoological movie you've ever seen.
9-year old Roxie goes from a normal life to dealing with an inoperable brain tumor. While she still has time, her family connects her to the Wish Kingdom Foundation, whose job is to try and get kids' minds off their plight by granting a wish. Roxie doesn't just have any wish. She wants to meet Bigfoot.
Sophie (Naysa Altmeyer, the best part of this film) is the grad student who becomes obsessed with making that wish come true. Nobody understands her, including her boyfriend. Making things tougher for her is Derrick, a senator's son who just wants to screw everything up for her. Beyond having some incredibly interesting chest hair, he's also evil just for the sake of being evil, messing up the wish every step of the way. I wish his motivations were explaining a little better. Is he negging Sophie because he thinks she'll sleep with him? It certainly seems that way at one point. And at others, we're sympathetic to him because of how his father treats him. We're so close to a real motivation for him and it's just a little off.
The real story? The roads that Sophie must travel to try and find a real Bigfoot. She's a true believer and perhaps that why Derrick dislikes her so much. His idea is to just put a Russian wrestler in a costume. That wouldn't be good enough for Sophie or, more importantly, Roxie.
There are some bad line readings here and there. And some of the pathos feel piled on at some points. But to be honest, this is a pretty interesting idea for both a book and film. If it's a little earnest, well, not every film has to packed with subtext and gore. Add in that it was shot for around $25,000 and it's actually astounding that the film looks as good as it does.
There are also some deep cut Bigfoot facts in this film. You won't hear this much Sasquatch info in your traditional Hollywood fare.