Just before the release of High School Musical 3: Senior Year, I found out that another Disney Channel Original Movie was shown: Camp Rock. As I wasn’t able to watch it on the Disney Channel, I rented the video just as soon as it was out. It stars Demi Lovato as Mitchie and Kevin Jonas as Shane.
Camp Rock has the same conflict as that in the first High School Musical: being yourself; only, for both movies, the premise is presented differently. In HSM, Troy and Gabriella were forced by their peers to conceal their true selves, while in Camp Rock, Mitchie lacked the confidence to be proud and reveal her true self. I guess Disney will never stop campaigning for being “true to your heart.”
Reportedly, Camp Rock has had the second highest rating for a Disney Channel Original Movie, just next after High School Musical 2. I believe movie musical fans wanted something different at last (plus the fact that one of the most famous present-day boy bands, The Jonas Brothers, would be presenting their acting skills in the movie). But personally, I found the movie convoluted with some dead-end/irrelevant scenes. Take for example the scene where Tess finds out that “the girl with the song” Shane was looking for was Mitchie and Tess intended to use Mitchie’s song in the Camp Rock Final Night. Guess what? Tess didn’t even sing the song! And that was what I was expecting! But anyway, the end turned out for the best. Maybe there just wasn’t enough time for more conflict resolution.
Conflicts. There were way too many in the television movie. Mitchie had a low self-esteem. She had problems getting into Camp Rock. She had trouble trying to be accepted by people she wanted to be with. She was accused of being a liar and a thief. She almost wasn’t able to perform on Final Night. *sigh* There were just too much!
Another thing, I found Demi Lovato’s performance of This Is Me overrated. Sorry, but she made it look like it was a hard metal rock song (with all the head-banging!) And speaking of singing with a mic, the actors weren’t convincing enough–it was fairly obvious that they were lip singing.
With the negative impression that Camp Rock left on me, I found the songs engaging. Its nature as a movie musical wasn’t exactly what I expected (with just one dance number and all) but it still fared well and I hope the sequel would be better.