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Camping Sauvage


Pierre-Louis Cinq Mars (Guy A. Lepage) is a snobbish broker who reports a hit and run to the police, unaware that the culprit is the vicious leader of a biker gang. Forced to leave his yuppie life to go into the Witness Protection Program, Cinq-Mars ends up hiding in a kitschy camping community managed by the equally kitschy Jackie Pigeon (Sylvie Moreau).

Lepage can be hilarious, but he’s not much of an actor. Why make him the straight man? The large supporting cast of campers and bikers get to be sillier, but they’re stuck with a witless screenplay that can’t do better than mocking people’s physical disabilities, speech impediment and bad grammar.

The movie was helmed by Lepage and Sylvain Roy, both first-time directors. They’re like kids in a toy store, aimlessly playing with everything and multiplying unnecessary visual tricks. Their only inspired decision was to hire Ramasutra to do the score. His fusion of funk, electronica and Spaghetti Western music is livelier than anything on screen.

In the past few weeks, Lepage has said over and over again that his big screen debut is not a “film” but “une vue”, a movie. In other words, something light, unpretentious, fun. Lepage says that such a movie can’t be criticized because it’s just harmless entertainment. Sorry, Guy, but I beg to differ. “Camping Sauvage” might not be pretentious, it might only aspire to be entertaining, but it doesn’t even succeed at that. It’s easily as misguided as the much maligned “Les Dangereux”.