Reviews of Recent Independent, Foreign, & Documentary Films in Theaters and DVD/Home Video
Directed by: Todd Graff.
Produced by: Katie Roumel, Christine Vachon & Pamela Koffler.
Written by: Graff.
Director of Photography: Kip Bogdahn.
Edited by: Myron Kerstein.
Music by: Stephen Trask.
Released by: IFC.
Country of Origin: USA. 114 min. Rated: PG-13.
With: Daniel Letterle, Joanna Chilcoat, Robin De Jesus, Anna Kendrick & Stephen Sondheim.
DVD Special Features: “The Making of Camp” featurette. Deleted and extended scenes. Live cast performance. Trailer.
At Camp Ovation, a training ground for aspiring actors, composer Stephen
is god (on the bus ride up, campers fervently sing not “Red Rover,” but
“Losing My Mind”). Typical of teenager comedies, there are the standard
stereotypes: the blond bitch Brittany, her psychotic sycophant Fritzi
the charming “Honest to God straight boy” Vlad (Letterle), every gay boy’s
Ellen (Chilcoat), along with the gay cross-dressing Latino Michael (De
Jesus). During the course of the summer, friendships and romance revolve around the handsome Vlad. One doesn’t have
to be a theater queen to appreciate Camp’s humor, but it wouldn’t hurt.
Anyone would get
the joke of teenage girl belting the middle-age anthem “The Ladies Who
Lunch” or a white girl
with a huge bouffant wig singing “And I’m Telling you I Ain’t Going.”
easily identify with the torture endured by campers (or “you middle class
piece of shit” as the pretentious director calls them) acting in an
Even though many scenes and musical numbers go on too long, dragging the
is eminently likable, especially with Kendrick’s hilarious and out-there
is the savvy afterschool special that should have been made. Curiously,
arrogantly makes assumptions about wallflower Ellen, the film assumes that
rightly the center of attention. But with this fine cast, many in their
feature film debut, he has
competition. Kent Turner
DVD Extras: The deleted scenes, which are definitely worth checking out, include a full tap dance number
starring the young boy, Petie, and his tap teacher. These three minutes steal the spotlight among
the extras. The featurette focuses mainly on the musical aspect of the film and the audition tapes.
While there is some character analysis, director Todd Graff talks mainly of the cast’s musical
talent. The live cast performance, a showcase for the ensemble, seems somewhat dull
after the film’s flashy numbers. Lisette Johnson