Camp Nowhere (1994)


The kids romp “Camp Nowhere” is yet another of the many “Home Alone” clones of the nineties that provides us with kids smarter than actual working adults that happen in to a situation both extraordinary and fantastic. What kid wouldn’t want to make their own summer camp and do what they want rather than stick to schedules, structure and physical activities? “Camp Nowhere” works mainly as a film you have to suspend disbelief for, if only because it’s hard to believe any of these adults could be fooled by children. But then in the nineties every kid was at least ten times smarter than any adult, and they knew their way around the world.

“Camp Nowhere” is a pretty fun movie, despite being virtually laugh free. I never quite found the movie laugh out loud comical, but it compensates for that with charismatic characters, and a sense of real fun. What “Blank Check” failed to touch on, “Camp Nowhere” really embraces whole hog. A group of kids are being forced in to separate camps for the summer and aren’t too pleased. Morris (also known as “Mud”) concocts an idea to hire an ex-actor to play the role of four separate counselors for camps he and his friends are being forced to attend.

With the large deposits their parents provide, they agree to buy an abandoned summer camp and spend the entire vacation there with a large group of kids, free to do just about anything they want. And no one really seems to notice at all. True, it’s a small town the camp resides in, but there are really no authorities or curious parties that come around to ponder why a large group of preteens are roaming wild and free without adult supervision. Save for Christopher Lloyd’s character Dennis, who lives in a cabin and begins forming affections for a woman who actually teaches kids.

Most of “Camp Nowhere” revolves around the kids wreaking havoc within the camp, and Mud’s friendship with Dennis. Lloyd really throws himself in to the role, and while he’s never hysterical, he at least seems to aim for admirable slapstick. The car wash scene in particular is a pretty fun bit of physical comedy. “Camp Nowhere,” while soaked in the nineties aesthetic, still really fulfills the concept it aims for. Nostalgia aside, “Camp Nowhere” is a worthy bit of kids film fare that offers entertaining characters, and a pretty unique premise, however far fetched. And what eleven year old boy didn’t want a girlfriend like Trish Prescott? Marnette Patterson’s hotness transcends any decade.