Magic Camp


To escape the pressures of growing up, magic-obsessed kids congregate at the one place they can be themselves. They want to prove their worth on the same stage where superstar magicians like Blaine and Copperfield once performed. But to get there, they need to learn more than sleight of hand and tricks of the trade. They have to find the magic inside. Since 1974, up-and-coming illusionists ages 12-20 have spurned tennis and badminton and wended their way to the Hogwartian halls of Bryn Mawr College and the world-famous Magic Camp. This enchanting documentary follows several campers with aspirations to become professional magicians as they unite in this house of hocus-pocus. The kids who are drawn to magic tend to be shy and un-athletic, and working hard at their craft helps them to escape the pressures of adolescence. One camper is trying to control his Tourette’s symptoms; another is an overweight high school dropout who lost his mother at age seven. There’s a Christian magician put off by raucous behavior and a girl hoping to reform the image of women in magic. Dedicated counselors demonstrate tough love while encouraging the campers to be the best they can be. And by the end of the session, presto change-o, the campers uncover something new …and perhaps even magical … about themselves. (Dir. by Judd Ehrlich, 2012, USA, 85 mins., Not Rated/Suitable for all ages, Snag Films) Digital