Did the kids who just won Tony Awards for Billy Elliott on Broadway ever have to endure this kind of criticism from a director? "Stop, stop, stop! It's 'toward.' Who is singing 'towards'? ... If you put an 's' on it, it makes it cheap, it makes it sound like you're from Long Island. Nothing against Long Islands ..." Thus begins Stagedoor, a documentary about a summer camp with superstar alumni such as Robert Downey, Jr., Natalie Portman, Mandy Moore, Bryce Howard, Zach Braff, Amy Ryan, Jon Cryer, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Felicity Huffman, and director Shawn Levy. Our friends at SnagFilms have made the film available for free online viewing.
"What will life be like when theater geeks and show-tune queens rule the world?," asked Jorge Morales in his review at The Village Voice. "Documentarian Alexandra Shiva's cameras miss the moment some of the alpha divas cross the line, but the overwrought counselors make it sound like a showbiz Lord of the Flies." Ed Gonzalez of Slant notes that Stagedoor Manor was "the inspiration for former student and teacher Todd Graff's Camp, a film which never arrived at the truth of what this performing arts camp means for the Future Gay Men, Fag Hags, Three Straight Boys, and Broadway Stars of Tomorrow who go there every summer." The doc "remains goodhearted and agreeable throughout -- low on pathos and surprisingly critical of the drama-queen roles students and counselors adopt throughout their three weeks" at the camp.
After the jump, we've embedded the film for your viewing convenience. More information is available at SnagFilms.