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I never went to camp as a kid, but I still have an affection for a lot of these "summer camp movies" of the late 70's/early 80's. This one, however, is pretty worthless. It's not funny like "Meatballs". It's not politically incorrect like "Little Darlings". It's not nudity and sex-saturated like "Summer Camp" and "The First Turn-On". And unlike "Friday the 13th", "The Burning", and "Sleepaway Camp", it doesn't even have Jason or somebody like that around to kill off these unfunny and irritating characters and put them out of my misery. The only innovative aspect to it is that it's supposedly set at a Jewish summer camp (even though half the cast is obviously not Jewish).
The director Joseph Ruben generally had an impressive exploitation career aside from this, directing everything from "The Pom-Pom Girls" to "The Stepfather", and he later found some mainstream success in the 1990's. This is probably his worst movie though (OK, "Sleeping with the Enemy" might have been worse, but THAT had Julia Roberts in it). As for the cast, this does include early career missteps by such notables by Dennis Quaid, Roseanne Arquette, and Fran Drescher (although the latter's entire career was pretty much a misstep). Quaid, like all the male characters here, is flat-out annoying as a military-obsessed weirdo. Roseanne Arquette is very cute and adorable in her first role, but she has virtually screen time. Drescher meanwhile, while she has never been unattractive and is not nearly as annoying here as she would become some years later, plays the camp nympho who "does" everybody (including a rabbi!) without actually ever taking off her clothes. I would have vastly preferred this role had gone to some anonymous bimbo who was willing to disrobe. And speaking of bimbos, Debi frickin' Richter is also in the cast. She was "Miss California 1975" and had one of the best bodies around back then (see her in the movie "Hot Moves"), but you get to see exactly none of it here.
I almost never COMPLETELY pan movies because I almost never watch movies in the first place if I have any inkling that they're going to COMPLETELY suck. I was fooled by this one though. Don't make the same mistake. See any of the movies I mentioned above (well, except maybe "Sleeping with the Enemy") instead.
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