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3.8 out of 5 stars 145 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

An extremely talented young cast shines in this "energetic musical romp" (Los Angeles Times)about a drama camp where the outcasts of today hone their skills to become the stars of tomorrow. Packed with romance, laughs and "genuine showstopping musical numbers" (The Washington Post), Camp is a "Blast of exuberant fun" (Rolling Stone)! Every summer, talented kids with big voices and even bigger dreams flock to Camp Ovation. But this year, a sexy new guy, Vlad (DanielLetterle), is not only stealing the show he's stealing the heart of every girl he encounters. And as the biggest day of camp approaches, the young performers must overcome backstabbing, unrequited love and Vlad's unpredictable libido to pull off the greatest show of their careers!


Charming and frequently hilarious, IFC Films' Camp is like Fame for the musical-theater set. It's set at Camp Ovation, a summer retreat for budding actors and singers who chant Stephen Sondheim's "Losing My Mind" on their bus rather than "99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall." Into this environment comes a--gasp!--straight male, Vlad (Daniel Letterle), who turns upside down the lives of wallflower Ellen (Joanna Chilcoat), cross-dressing Michael (Robin DeJesus), and instructor Bert Hanley (Don Dixon), a frustrated one-hit-wonder composer. Camp was written and directed by Todd Graff, himself a Broadway veteran, based on his experiences at New York's musical camp Stagedoor Manor (which was attended by Natalie Portman and Robert Downey Jr., among others). The characters are a bit thin and the plot somewhat predictable, but the musical numbers are a lot of fun--older tunes are mixed with originals by Stephen Trask (Hedwig and the Angry Inch), Michael Gore (Fame), and Lynn Ahrens (Ragtime, Seussical the Musical)--and fans of musicals will love the many inside jokes, especially those relating to Sondheim. --David Horiuchi

Special Features

  • Deleted and extended scenes
  • "The Making of Camp" featurette
  • Live cast performance

Product Details

  • Actors: Don Dixon, Daniel Letterle, Joanna Chilcoat, Robin de Jesus, Steven Cutts
  • Directors: Todd Graff
  • Writers: Todd Graff
  • Producers: Allen Bain, Brad Simpson, Caroline Kaplan, Christine Vachon, Dan Levine
  • Format: AC-3, Anamorphic, Color, Dolby, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    Parents Strongly Cautioned
  • Studio: MGM (Video & DVD)
  • DVD Release Date: February 24, 2004
  • Run Time: 114 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (145 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000VV4MW
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #81,959 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Camp" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By James Hiller VINE VOICE on February 26, 2004
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I'm starting to believe that movies are made on a single scene that reaches into you and grabs you. If you find that scene, then the entire movie works for you. Such is true about the wonderfully charming movie, "Camp".
The scene for this movie is early on, in the school bus that's transporting the various drama wannabees to Camp Ovation for the summer. The kdis are singing a dramatic, compelling showstopper song as we pan down the center aisle of the bus. The camera stops on a young blond boy singing his heart out, sitting next to a man, who turns to the boy and says, "Bud Miller: Sports Counselor". The boy looks at the man incredulously and says, "We have a SPORTS COUNSELOR?".
Thus, this movie is made. Camp is a deliriously delightful romp with a bunch of multi-talents kids all spending their summer learning about the craft of acting, and the craft of life. Expected to perform a new show every two weeks, with a benefit at the end of the season seems ludicrous, but the kids pull it off, with great success.
This film has many hearts to it, mainly in the characters of Ellen, Vlad, and Michael. As they interact with each other, each character avoids the strereotypical traps many teenager films fall into, and lets these characters live and breathe. There's not a candy coated kids in this film, and thanks to an excellent script, and equally excellent acting from the kids, it all becomes believable.
The music is an intergral part to this movie, and somehow both propels the plot and supports it. I bought the CD the day after seeing the movie, and it still hasn't left my small collection of CDs I carry with me.
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It's movies like �Camp� that remind me what I love most about movies. It doesn�t preach an agenda and doesn�t make me feel like a fool for feeling sentimental. It has a little bit of cynicism but a lot of great music. There are no drugs, no guns, no car chases and no fake breasts. What �Camp� does, and does very well, is tell a story. Simply and completely. �Camp� took me into a world I was both familiar and stranger to, and made me feel better for taking the journey. While there will be little chance the film will find the same kind of mainstream hit �Chicago� or �Moulin Rouge� became, �Camp� should become a favorite with discerning movie musical fans and help re-usher in this dormant too long genre.
While summer camp often means nature trips, cookouts and wacky hijinks to most young people, Camp Ovation in upstate New York caters to those who are more artistically inclined. Over the two months campers attend, they will put on a new show every other week, be it drama, musical or something more avant-garde, going through the process of auditioning, creating their own sets and costumes, rehearsing and presenting a new show for an audience, then beginning anew the next day. Many of the kids at Camp Ovation are outsiders within their own worlds. Ellen (Joanna Chilcoat) is reduced to begging her older brother in order to have a date to her junior prom, while Michael (Robin DeJesus) gets beaten up at his prom for daring to arrive in drag. Fritzi (Anna Kendrick) is so starved for any attention, she spends her entire year waiting for camp so she can be the �assistant� to Ovation�s number one drama diva, Jill (Alana Allen). Our first clue things will be different this summer arrives in the form of Vlad (Daniel Letterle).
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Format: DVD
I don't think Camp was half as bad as other reviewers have made it out to be. The cast is made of aspiring actors playing aspiring actors.....what could be more appropriate? Granted their acting skills aren't polished. But they are portraying actors in musical theater.....their voices are what matters. And I have to say everyone in the film had fantastic singing voices. I am glad Camp wasn't cast with young pop stars turned actors (Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake, the Olsen Twins, Bow Wow). This cast, imperfections and all, was truer to the form.
Even if you don't appreciate musical theater, the theme of kids growing up and trying to find their place in the world is a key part of this movie.
What I appreciate most about Camp is how it portrays teens as having aspirations and goals in life. It's not one of those teen-exploitation films where teenagers are portrayed as being pot smoking, sex-obsessed, and souless (i.e. American Pie). We need more films that challenge teens, without being ridiculousely wholesome. Camp has achieved that.
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Format: DVD
I rented this movie for my 17 year old who is planning a career in theatre. She is going to Stage Door Manor this summer. After viewing the movie...Boy, am I glad I chose to send her to the best camp in the USA! Some of her teenage theatre friends have seen it and loved it. They saw themselves in the characters. The movie is a reality check on the talent out there and what one faces going into this field. As a former choir/theatre student, I found "Camp" a delightful walk back to my own teen years and the ups and downs of growing up dreaming of Broadway. I loved the music. My daughter's choir teacher heard the musical numbers and was impressed with both the talent and scores. Basically, the film is for theatre students, and those adults with a passion for theatre. If you want to identify with kids whose first love is theatre and the ups and downs of being a theatre geek...This movie is for you. The film gives a glimpse into the lives of real teenagers with identity issues whose every breath is theatre. If you can't deal with gay issues, don't rent it.
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