By Barbara Shulgasser-Parker,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Teens compete in engaging dance movie; some profanity.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Be loyal to your crew. When you work at something you love, it seems a little less like work. People make mistakes, but they can get back on track. If someone threatens you, walk away from violence.
Positive Role Models
Hunter learns to work with a group. He tends to act selfishly but comes to see that life is better when he isn’t. At first Hunter is condescending and dismissive of the conscientious dancers he meets. Lance is a bully. Jeb demonstrates how to be a great, supportive friend.
Violence & Scariness
Lance shoves Hunter in a demonstration of bullying and schoolyard supremacy.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Hunter dances with his shirt off. The dancers wear midriff-baring outfits. A boy and girl kiss briefly. After Lance mocks Jeb, calling him a "special-needs kid," Jeb shoots back that Lance’s mother took care of his "special needs" last night.
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"Hell," "bitch," "a--hole," "s--t." The middle-finger gesture.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Underage drinking at the beginning of the story gets Hunter into trouble, and he's assigned to do community service. He apologizes and doesn’t do it again.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that YouTube Red production Dance Camp is the Pitch Perfect of dance, with teens competing in their summer dance camp's coveted dance championship. In this production, the kids choreograph and rehearse, demonstrating teamwork, focus, and dedication. Romance brews, but only brief, clothed kissing is seen. There's some brief innuendo. The kids say "hell," "s--t," "a--hole," and "bitch," and we see the middle-finger gesture. One character is a bully. Underage drinking gets the hero in trouble at first, but he seems to reform himself.
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What's the Story?
DANCE CAMP begins as Hunter (Nadji Jeter) and his underage friends throw a party where alcohol is served. A judge sentences him to community service -- work of his dance teacher mother's choosing. She sends him to work at a friend's summer dance camp where Hunter's self-suppressed talent as a dancer is unleashed. He joins a team in the annual dance competition and makes it to the finals, learning loyalty, dedication, and focus in the process. He even finds a little romance.
Is It Any Good?
Terrific performances and a solid comic script make a largely formulaic scenario fun to watch. Nadji Jeter, a talented dancer, is charismatic and self-possessed as the streetwise kid stuck in the woods at summer camp. Philip Labes is a standout, bringing a sweetness and precise comic timing to his portrayal of Hunter's sidekick, Jeb. Teens will enjoy the gentle romance and the impressive dance scenes, and parents will appreciate the positive messages about working hard to achieve a goal.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about dance movies. Why are they so popular? Which one is your favorite, and why?
What do you think "don't judge a book by its cover" means? Why do you think it's important to give people a chance?
This movie is a YouTube Red production. Why do you think YouTube is producing its own movies? What are the benefits of doing so?
- On DVD or streaming: February 10, 2016
- Cast: Nadji Jeter, Meg D'Angelis, Philip Labes, Jake Paul
- Director: Bert and Bertie
- Inclusion Information: Black actors
- Studios: YouTubeRed, 20th Century Fox
- Genre: Comedy
- Run time: 83 minutes
- MPAA rating: PG-13
- MPAA explanation: language, some suggestive references, and brief teen partying
- Last updated: April 8, 2023
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