Sunday, June 22, 2008

We're going to Camp Rock!

Someday, decades down the road, when the Jonas Brothers are looking back on what I'm sure will be an illustrious career, I don't think "Camp Rock" will be a decision they'll remember as one of their shining moments. I'm just going out on a limb here.

The Disney Channel movie, the latest beneficiary of the relentless promotion machine making kids feel like they've already seen the entire film weeks before it airs, debuted Friday night, and even my 9-year-old daughter couldn't muster up a glowing recommendation -- "It was OK" was about the best she could do. My 6-year-old son, meanwhile, declared it "the baddest movie ever." And this is coming from someone who sat through "The Barney Movie." (I don't think he remembers it, but I know it's seared into my brain.)

But to me (and I'll admit to watching only bits and pieces of the movie -- for adults, watching one of these Disney productions is sort of like staring directly into the sun), the surprising thing about "Camp Rock" wasn't the shamelessly derivative story, the tuneless musical numbers or the fact that the Jonas Brothers can't, you know, act, since all of that was pretty much a given.

No, what surprised me was when the camp director comes out and, lo and behold, it's Julie Brown of MTV's early '90s video satire show "Just Say Julie"! I suppose she needs to pay the bills, what with "Just Say Julie" having been off the air since 1992, but still, it's disappointing, particularly since she also has a writing credit on "Camp Rock." Can this be the same Julie Brown who came up with this piece of satirical brilliance?

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