Mandie and the Secret Tunnel is the first full length movie based on the Mandie book series by Lois Leppard, set around 1900 in North Carolina. After the sudden death of her father, 12-year-old Mandie Shaw (Lexi Johnson) is devastated when her stepmother sends her off to serve a cruel family. Mandie runs away, and with the help of her father's Cherokee best friend, "Uncle Ned" Sweetwater (Craig Reuben), she crosses a dangerous mountain range to reach her deceased Uncle John's mansion. Guided by an intriguing story that her father used to tell her, Mandie and Jason Bond (Dean Jones), her uncle's estate keeper, search for her rich relative's missing will. The search takes on more urgency when people show up falsely claiming to be the rightful heirs to the fortune. This feature is family friendly for ages eight and up, although it does contain stereotypes typical of the time period and some fighting which results in several deaths.