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Netflix original faith-based film features reimagined CCM classics

NASHVILLE (BP) – Netflix’s new faith-based original film “A Week Away,” provides Christian audiences with a fun family-friendly musical featuring reimagined ‘90s contemporary Christian classics as well as several original songs.

Debuting on Netflix March 26, A Week Away follows orphaned teenager Will (Kevin Quinn) as he attends a Christian summer camp in order to avoid going to juvenile detention after getting in trouble one too many times.

During the week away at camp Will discovers romance with the camp director’s daughter Avery (Bailee Madison) and the truth of the Gospel message, with a few family-appropriate musical numbers mixed in along the way. The cast also includes Jahbril Cook, Sherri Shepherd (“30 Rock”) and David Koechner (“The Office,” “Anchorman” series).

The movie is considered to be the first of its kind as a contemporary Christian musical and is Netflix’s first entry into the faith-based film genre. It is rated PG and contains no major sexual content, language or violence.

Kids will be entertained by the catchy songs and accompanying dances, but adults will be entrenched in the ‘80s and ‘90s nostalgia.

The soundtrack features the film’s cast singing and dancing to ‘90s contemporary Christian hits from artists such as Michael W. Smith (“Place in This World”), Amy Grant (“Baby, Baby”), Steven Curtis Chapman (“The Great Adventure”), Rich Mullins (“Awesome God”) and Audio Adrenaline (“Big House”).

The film even features humorous cameos from Grant and Chapman.

Grant said in a press release the songs used in the movie felt like they were written exactly for the movie’s story and called the experience of having her song reimagined “incredible.”

“I was one of those kids that went to church camp for one week every summer from middle school through my high school years,” Grant said. “What a thrill it was for me to hear my song ‘Baby, Baby’ reinvented for a camp setting and feel like it fit the story of the film so perfectly. They knocked it out of the park!”

The movie strongly resembles a Christian version of Disney musical projects such as “High School Musical” and “Camp Rock.” In fact, the film’s executive music producer Adam Watts has a production credit on Disney’s “High School Musical 3” and is a three-time Dove Award winner. Watts wrote four original songs on the movie’s soundtrack, according to thechristianbeat.org.

Director Roman White, quoted in the same report, spoke highly of Watts’ original songs.

“We knew that these musical moments had to compete with some of the biggest songs in Christian music history, and I believe the audience will love them just as much!” White said. “I was blown away by Adam and what he brought to the table is simply magical. He was able to not only reinvent some untouchable songs but I also think create new timeless hits that fit perfectly into the film.”

The movie offers other non-musical forms of nostalgia including ‘80s pop culture references like the movie “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” (one character even wears a “Save Ferris” shirt), and anyone who attended Christian summer camp within the past 10-15 years will feel an additional wave of nostalgia.

Beyond dance numbers and faith-based themes, the making of the movie produced life transformation for some of the movie’s cast.

Lead actor Kevin Quinn, in an interview with christianheadlines.com, said filming the movie helped him genuinely “rediscover,” his own personal faith.

“I was going through a bit of an existential crisis, which sounds crazy, but I think my faith was shaken,” Quinn said. “A Week Away really brought back some of the things that were important in my life and made me realize just how important faith was in my life. So A Week Away not only was a catalyst for Will, it was a catalyst for me as Kevin Quinn, to be reintroduced to my faith.”

A Week Away is streaming now on Netflix. The soundtrack is available now on music streaming platforms, and physical copies will be available starting April 23.