Every summer, the Christian teens of Roman White’s hokey musical “A Week Away,” streamed on Netflix, visit Camp Aweegaway for posh flirting, Amy Grant ballads and the Warrior Games, a multi-day Olympics of tug-of-war, dodge ball and Hula-hooping, crowned by a talent show. But this year the high jinks are disturbed by an orphan named Will (Kevin Quinn) – a cuddly car thief with a criminal addiction to hair gel – who seeks redemption in the chaste embrace of the camp owner’s daughter, Avery (Bailee Madison). While his crush and his geeky bunkmate (an adorable Jahbril Cook) work to save the hip underdog’s soul, Will helps them defeat reigning Warrior Games winner Sean (Iain Tucker), who is mainly because of that Seems to be a villain The script is desperate for a touch of conflict. (Sean’s other passions are tapping and saving the narwhals.)
This is a film that is as neat, transparent, and kid-friendly as a square made of jello salad, and so squishy that it doesn’t deal with its religious themes, but instead puts them in song lyrics where it can float the narrative like grapes. Previous generations of Camp Flick fans may be surprised to see swimming scenes – historically an excuse for close-ups of bikinis and abs – here dressed modestly in wet unisex T-shirts and shorts. Only when “A Week Away” makes fun of its own innocence will it be made to laugh. The camp owner, played by comedian David Koechner, oversees the war games and appears as Lt. Col. Kilgore of Apocalypse Now in costume to advise paintball fighters to watch their six. The youth leader Kristin (Sherri Shepherd) panics. “Not your 666!” she howls. “I don’t even know what ‘Apocalypse Now’ is.”
A week away
Not rated. Running time: 1 hour 34 minutes. Watch on Netflix.