Flapping fans may have been replaced by battery-operated spritzing whirrers, computers are missed as much as mommies, and attention deficit meds are as common as hot dogs and Jell-O, but the yearly school-break tradition of kids attending woodsy retreats continues.
Bradley Beesley and Sarah Price's soft, brisk and generally surface-deep documentary "Summercamp!" chases one group of Illinois-area children for three weeks at Wisconsin's Swift Nature Camp, where the hard work of keeping energetic kids busy, happy and focused -- one counselor brags that ADD "goes away" there -- is clearly a 24-hour-a-day gig. There's the sense, however, that the filmmakers have their own concentration problem, because too often we're whisked away from spending quality time with the film's pint-size subjects.
But brief bits of real charm, personality and camp-life detail squeeze through, suggesting why some thrive in an oasis of animal worship, outdoor revelry and zero-to-hero popularity that forgives a nerdy rep back home .
Then there's 13-year-old Cameron, a beefy, homesick outcast who is stuck between alienating peers on one side and disciplining counselors on the other.