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Happy Campers (2001)

R | | Comedy | 21 January 2001 (USA)
When a summer camp director gets injured, the diverse group of college freshmen counselors take charge and spice up the everyday routine of the camp.


Daniel Waters


Daniel Waters

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1 nomination. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Brad Renfro ... Wichita
Dominique Swain ... Wendy
Keram Malicki-Sánchez ... Jasper
Emily Bergl ... Talia
Jordan Bridges ... Adam
Jaime King ... Pixel (as James King)
Justin Long ... Donald
Peter Stormare ... Oberon
Graham Frye Graham Frye ... Charlie The Cook
Ryan Adams Ryan Adams ... Bad Boy Billy
Ashley Banks Ashley Banks ... Nasty Natalie
Monica Hewes ... Millie (as Monica Bugajski)
Trevor Christensen Trevor Christensen ... Wichitaesque Wes
Elizabeth Dray Elizabeth Dray ... Hayley
Xavier Hernandez Xavier Hernandez ... Upper Income Lawrence


When a summer camp director gets injured, the diverse group of college freshmen counselors take charge and spice up the everyday routine of the camp.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The excitement is In-tents!



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for nonstop crude sexual content involving minors, and for language and drug use | See all certifications »






Release Date:

21 January 2001 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

40 kafta meronyhta See more »

Filming Locations:

North Carolina, USA See more »


Box Office


$15,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

DiNovi Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Pivotal scenes that take place in the woods are tinted blue, same as the woods scenes in Heathers (1988). In one scene Wichita says, "If you ever find yourself turning into one of those, eat some Drano." In Heathers (1988), Heather Chandler died from drinking Drano. See more »


At the end of the movie when Wendy misses the bus, it switches to the inside of the other bus and in the top left corner when they show Witchita on the bus, you can see Wendy standing at the back of the bus before she gets on at it all. See more »


Jasper: You see, love conquers all and Wichita didn't want to be conquered.
See more »


References The Breakfast Club (1985) See more »


Softer Side
Written and Performed by Kathleen York (as Bird York)
See more »

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User Reviews

Hilarious movie with lots of heart.
19 August 2007 | by PoisonKeybladeSee all my reviews

Okay, for starters, Happy Campers completely blew me away. I was expecting an American-Pie-esquire teen sex romp, but what I got what a hysterically funny mature comedy with extremely colorful characters. It is by far the best teen comedy film I've ever seen, and it goes much deeper than most teen films dare. It is not afraid to be in-your-face with the humor, and the storyline is very realistic.

At Camp Bleeding Dove, many new counselors must unite after a mishap leaves the camp director unstable. They set out to diversify the camp, and change things up, and along the way they discover themselves.

The dialogue is just great, and it truly captures teen spirit and the way that teenagers talk. All of the camp counselors have their own unique personalities, and mesh so well together. Everyone has weaknesses, and the love story is incredibly true to real life. The counselors struggle with both relationships, finding themselves, and caring for the campers, a responsibility that some of them are unable to handle.

All of the great aspects of this movie come together so perfectly. The well-written script is brought to life by a lot of the most underrated actors of all time, which in turn are directed by a sensational director who gives the movie a great look and feel. Brad Renfro plays Wichita, the brooding camp counselor that everyone idolizes and looks up to. Renfro has always been extremely talented in my book, especially after his astounding performance in Bully. He is just as great here, bringing a great sensibility and look to Wichita that must have been completely absent on paper. Dominique Swain, the side character in most movies like Alpha Dog and Face/Off, takes center stage as one of the main characters, Wendy. She couldn't have been more perfectly cast. She turns Wendy into a loopy, insanely energized woman, and it works so well, especially in contrast to Renfro's Wichita. Keram Malicki-Sanchez, who has a history of small stand-out roles in Johnn Q, Cherry Falls, and the TV show Buffy the Vampire Slayer, plays Jasper, the homosexual camp counselor that all the girls at camp are completely goo-goo over. It is great seeing him on center stage in a central role, and he is definitely perfect for the role. Emily Bergl, the seriously underrated actress from The Rage: Carrie 2, the TV miniseries Taken, and the 2005 film The Hard Easy, plays the strange and quirky Talia. Bergl is spectacular, and the role gives her a wide range of acting to do, all of which she is perfect at. There wasn't a single instance where her role of Talia was not believable. Jaime King, from such films as Sin City, The Tripper, and Cheaper By the Dozen 2, plays the sexual maniac Pixel. Her role is so goofy and ridiculous (in a good way) that it had to have been hard to mess it up. She was mostly great, but was definitely not the best of the cast. Justin Long, yet another underrated actor from films like Dodgeball, Jeepers Creepers, and Accepted, plays the nerdy Donald with such sincerity. Every role I've ever seen the guy play has been fantastic, and his role as the nerdy and inexperienced Donald is no exception. It is quite awesome to see his evolution in the movie thanks to the absolutely sensational script. Jordan Bridges, yet another underrated actor who appeared in Mona Lisa Smile, the TV show Charmed, and some other projects, plays Arnold, the aggressive sexaholic. As much as this movie sounds like it's filled with stereotypes, the actors and the scripts break away from them completely, and most often do the opposite of what you would normally be expecting. Bridges is no different, as his role as Arnold is very realistic and hilarious. His character is so much more than it first appears. The only person in the cast that I absolutely hated (and will most likely always hate) was Peter Stormare, who plays Oberon. He does get the job done, but I absolutely cannot stand him. Something about his voice just grates on my nerves and I don't feel that he has any real acting talent to speak of.

Another thing I liked about the movie was the narrating by all of the characters. For a second you think it's going to be a Justin Long comedy film, but then each of the actors take turns narrating, and in the end almost everyone had the same amount of screen time. There wasn't one character I wholly disliked and couldn't stand. They were all so different and unique that I liked each one of them for different reasons. The movie also had a great deal of heart, and it has a very subtle message, not the in-your-face crappy Hollywood movie messages.

The cast is so perfect and the script is so good that Happy Campers easily emerges as one of my favorite films of all time. It was laugh-out-loud hilarious in several parts, and I completely loved it. Not sure why this film doesn't have a bigger fan base, but I thought it was absolutely amazing. It was definitely a great comedy.

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