TV Review - Eating Out: Drama Camp

Aaron Milo (left) & Chris Salvatore
in "Eating Out: Drama Camp"
Eating Out: Drama Camp is the fourth in the series of gay films that started in 2004. The series follows a group of young Angelenos who pretend to be something they're not, typically the opposite of their sexual orientation. They do this in order to get close to someone to whom they're attracted. Drama Camp is different in that the person pretending is not trying to get close but rather keep the object of his affection away.

Young, white, gay couple, Casey and Zack apply to a drama camp. In the previous film, neither demonstrated any interest in acting or stage work, but, they put together a short film that's directed by their heterosexual friend, an African-American named Jason who is also applying to drama camp.

On the drive up to the camp, Jason introduces Casey and Zack to Benji who we don't really know that much more about besides the fact that he and Jason have probably known each other for a while. Benji brings along his transsexual friend, Lily, a Latina who was born a boy but is becoming a woman. A group of other random people jump aboard the van that's taking them all up to the camp.

When the campers do get to the secluded area in the woods, they meet Richard Dickey who runs the camp with a bitter, sexually-frustrated iron fist along with his Pollyanna-like servant, Penny. The movie proceeds like it's going to be a gayer version of Wet Hot American Summer.

What made the previous two movies in this series laugh out loud funny was the presence of Rebekah Kochan who played Tiffani, a sassy, sexy, blonde bombshell who considered herself a gay man in a woman's body. She stole every scene she was in and her every line was always hilarious. She gets only one scene in this movie, which by far is the funniest and makes the rest of the movie dull by comparison.

There are a few snappy, pop culture references like one about Rick Santorum, but, all in all, this movie works more as a drama than a comedy. Daniel Skelton who plays Casey and Chris Salvatore who plays Zack do a better job of handling the dramatic stuff. Both are willing to go the distance and do the silly things that these movies demand, but I connected with them more when they were in their serious scenes.

For example, Casey and Zack realize that they've fallen out of love with each other and that they should break up. Zack, in fact, develops feelings for Benji. When Skelton and Salvatore were doing the simple, mature, yet serious scenes that conveyed this, I appreciated them. The problem is that director Q. Allan Brocka juggles too much. In the first Eating Out, Brocka only focused on the romantic fate of one couple. Here, he essentially has three couples and there's really not enough material given to balance them all.

Benji who takes his shirt off proving that he's physically attractive is really given nothing else to help us understand why Zack would fall in love with him. In the previous film, all this stuff about Zack is established like his interest in Italy and graphic design, but what is Benji into? Besides being good-looking, Benji and a few of the other characters aren't given anything to grasp.

For gay fans, that's perhaps not a problem. For gay fans, all that's required is for young, good-looking, white guys to take their shirts off and make out with each other. There certainly is no shortage of guys doing that in this movie. Some even drop their pants and do full frontal nudity. As such, this movie can only rise to the level of idiotic sex romp.

The movie tosses out great ideas like whether or not an openly gay actor can play straight or who would be more believable in a female role, a transsexual or an actual woman. Sadly, this movie never truly explores those great ideas.

Instead we explore the six-pack abs of Aaron Milo who plays Benji. Instead we explore the pecs of Ronnie Kroell, a male model and Playgirl cover, who plays Beau. Instead, we explore the penis size of Steven Daigle, the former Big Brother contestant-turned-porn star, who plays Conor, or at least those who get the unrated and unedited DVD explored this as well as anyone who saw the Philadelphia Qfest premiere.

Three Stars out of Five.
Rated TV-MA for language and sexuality.
Originally Aired on LOGO-TV on July 24.
Available on
Running Time: 1 hr. and 30 mins.


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