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The God-squad answer to Todd Graff’s Camp, this after-church special finds chaste cover girl Hilary Duff playing a red-state songbird who, when her beloved brother dies in a car wreck after a Christian emo show (Jesus evidently wants him for a sunbeam), decides to buck their toothpick-chomping daddy’s rules and sneak off to a summer music program in scary urban L.A. Adorable Britboy Oliver James valiantly competes for second billing with Duff’s camera-hogging silver cross talisman necklace. We’re supposed to be rooting for this left-behind sister in her struggle to hit “Hallelujah Chorus” high notes, but all we can do is marvel at how the mighty—Northern Exposure hottie John Corbett (as a weirdly flirty music teacher) and Risky Business babe Rebecca De Mornay (as Duff’s frisky aunt)—have fallen.

This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on September 28, 2004

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