In Rachel Grady and Heidi Ewing’s 2006 American documentary Jesus Camp, the film makers chronicle a charismatic Christian summer camp. The Charismatic Christian movement is itself another offshoot of Protestantism and a uniquely modern American form of Christianity. Namely, the rituals of the canonical Christian Churches, such as the Orthodox and the Catholic, are rejected, following Protestantism, and a more modern form of Christianity is preached, consistent with the modern world, such as scenes in the film where Christian rock is emphasized.
At the same time, the film describes the movement as wanting to return the United States to Jesus Christ, such that, in a certain sense, the camp itself is against the modern world. Namely, these Christians claim to embody conservative values, although from a religious perspective, their form of worship is entirely modern, deviating from the rituals of the canonical Church in ways that in a sense make the camp entirely palatable with modern American culture.
The filmmakers, however, take a very U.S. centered approach to their film making. They attempt to portray the camp as in tension with the modern world, for example, opposing phenomenon such as homosexuality and stressing so-called “family values.” But this is itself a uniquely American take on Christianity, one where elements of popular culture are fused to the Christian belief. Essentially, the film can be understood as a false dichotomy of conservatism in the form of the camp and modern America on the other, since such a type of camp with its particular forms of worship are only possible in a modern, fragmented religious society such as the United States.
Namely, if one visits other religious groups with ancient traditions, such as the Christian Orthodox Church, then one would not even recognize those who participate in the Jesus Camp in the film as Christian. Namely, whereas the film makers show a valuable belief contrast from the perspective of the “conservative” Jesus Camp and the more modern American society, in a sense the film is too biased in Protestantism and American culture and fails to see other religious and even Christian viewpoints, according to which “Jesus Camp” and the morals they wish to oppose are two sides of the same cultural coin.