Gay Essential Films To Watch, Camp

Camp tells the story of the experiences of several teenagers at Camp Ovation, a summer theatre camp. The teenagers, all from different backgrounds, feel at their most comfortable while performing.

As the youngsters board the bus for camp, their different issues become apparent: Ellen Lucas (Joanna Chilcoat) who is shy and self-conscious, Fritzi Wagner (Anna Kendrick), the nerdy one who has feelings for Jill, Jill Simmons (Alana Allen), who is a bit of a diva , Jenna Malloran (Tiffany Taylor) who has had her jaw wired shut to help her lose weight, Michael Flores (Robin de Jesus), a gay teenager who has been beaten by his classmates for attending his prom in drag and Vlad Baumann (Daniel Letterle), a newcomer.

Camp Ovation puts on a new play or musical every fortnight. Vlad and Ellen bond after rehearsal and start a relationship. This is abruptly halted when Ellen finds Vlad making out with Dee (Sasha Allen), who previously slept with Michael and the three fall out.

The camp’s guest counselor, composer Bert Hanley (Don Dixon) is a grumpy alcoholic who is particularly irritated by Vlad until he has a change of heart following a performance of one of his unreleased songs.

The night of the benefit concert arrives and after many tense situations it is a hit and Vlad, Michael, and Ellen make up.

Camp

Critics

“At the film’s uplifting conclusion, when a stilled voice finally makes itself heard, you can unmistakably feel your heart lift, as if it had grown tiny wings. Camp reminds you that once you believed it would always soar, just like that.”
   Connie Ogle, Miami Herald

“A hilarious, rousing musical comedy set at a summer camp where nobody plays sports and everybody worships Stephen Sondheim.”
   David Ansen, Newsweek

Camp may not be great cinema, but it’s passionate and original enough to be special.”
   Kelly Borgeson, Premiere

Did You Know?

Camp is based on Graff’s own experiences at a similar camp called Stagedoor Manor where many scenes of the movie were filmed and where Graff was a young Robert Downey Junior’s camp counselor. The widest release of the film was in the UK, where it was shown in 116 cinemas and ran for 12 weeks. Review our Gay Themed Films Here

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Alexander Ryll
Launched in June 2014, Gay Essential is the world’s largest gay themed film blog promoting new and rare features. I am helped by some amazing writers and we also cover film festivals in the UK and USA. We are 100% independent, without advertising or funding by film distributors. Help to keep Gay Essential independent by purchasing our merchandise GET (Gay Essential Tees)
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