This is a documentary response to Darwin’s expeditions to the Galapagos islands in order to set the record straight on evolution. Their purpose is clearly stated in the beginning of the film, “To test Darwin’s ideas in the light of good science and eternal truth.” The Mysterious Islands has great cinematography as they take you through various species on the islands (turtles, sharks, cormorants, and lizards) to illustrate unique designs and alternate explanations of how they have adapted to their environment. Darwin’s take is presented and evolutionary models explored. The creationist take is also presented as the superior view.
It does get fuzzy when you start talking about where “genetic potential” came from. Obviously as a Christian I agree with the film that God put it there. The difficulty is that this documentary has a hard time living up to its purpose of actually testing Darwin’s theories in light of good science and eternal truth. Can you test whether or not God put “genetic potential” in an animal? Not really. In the end science won’t be able to answer these questions. Faith will have to come into play. This movie does have some good information in it and has some beautiful footage of the Galapagos along with great history and even good science. But the proving is the part that proves impossible in the end.
Last, there is some really good information in the second half of the DVD that I would say is the strength of their presentation. They try to debunk the assumption that geologic formations always form as the same rate because that assumes that no outside events or catastrophic activities would have any impact on the development of things like sediment. That means the standard methods are not always accurate. They don’t get into much hard science with this and leave it at “the assumptions are wrong” without really getting into why the assumptions are wrong. So the principles presented are interesting but the support is lacking.
They also give some arguments you may have heard before about astronomy, the size of the sun and the age of the universe. The premise is, the world cannot be as old as evolutionists require because the size of the sun would not allow it. I think that is a very strong point to make. However, if they are going to be fair, they are assuming the same standardized rates of decay that they debunked in the previous points when geologists use them to point to an old earth. So to be fair it is also possible that the sun doesn’t burn as uniformly as we observe today and to assume it has a constant rate of decay would be to make the same mistake as the evolutionists make about the age of sediments layers, that they are formed over set periods of time based on how long each layer would take to form.
Overall, I think this is a good DVD. They present good information. The cinematography is outstanding and the documentary is engaging. If you want an engaging introduction to this topic for a Bible class this video would be a good place to start.