Year:  2022

Director:  Leonardo and Demian Fuica

Release:  August 16, 2022

Running time: 115 minutes

Worth: $12.00
FilmInk rates movies out of $20 — the score indicates the amount we believe a ticket to the movie to be worth

Leo Zola, Caitlin Cameron, Hannah Forest Briand, Alex Gravenstein

... would be a leaner beast if it took a less protracted route down a well-beaten path.

Given the impact that it’s had on the world as a whole, it comes as next to no surprise that filmmakers have turned to the global pandemic as a source of inspiration; whether by innovatively working in line with lockdown guidelines during production or using the pandemic to explore larger themes. The horror genre is no exception, with the likes of Dashcam, Songbird and Host mining Covid for scares. Next up to the plate is Camping Trip, the English language debut of directors Demian and Leonardo Fuica.

Set in America during the summer of 2020, the film sees Enzo (Leonardo again, credited as Leo Zola) and Polly (Caitlin Cameron) packing up for a weekend away in the woods with Ace (Alex Gravenstein) and Coco (Hannah Forest Briand). Leonardo – who also wrote the film – feels comfortable to give us extended time with the quartet to discuss the impact the pandemic has had on them. One of them announces how much they’re looking forward to hugging the others – it genuinely resonates as a reminder of the distance we kept from our loved ones.

Not long after setting up camp, however, things begin to take a dark turn. Namely, a body, a bag of money and what appears to be an experimental vaccine for Covid. Unbeknownst to the group, while they try and work out what their next step should be, they are stalked by two violent men who want their money back.

If all of that sounds somewhat familiar, you’ve seen Danny Boyle’s Shallow Grave with which Camping Trip shares some DNA.

Despite the potential dangers of not reporting their findings, our happy campers become laser-focused on figuring out what to do with the cash. One even suggests selling the vaccine to the highest bidder.

The Brothers Fuica go to great lengths to show how close the group are – and they get real close at one point – so their descent into money fever comes a little bit out of left field.

There’s the feeling that seeds could have been planted earlier in the narrative to justify the eventual bloodshed. Clocking in at nearly two hours, Camping Trip certainly has the room to do so.

In fact, if it isn’t already obvious, Camping Trip’s biggest issue is its pacing. The film’s leisurely saunter to get to where it – and the audience – wants it to go, is commendable in terms of character building. The cinematography at times is stunning, however – and it might be the bloodlust talking – Camping Trip would be a leaner beast if it took a less protracted route down a well-beaten path.


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