Amy Grimehouse has moved location and seems to have found a more than suitable home in The Book Club, Shoreditch. Emanating the quirky vibe that this night personifies, The Book Club added to the atmosphere making it difficult to imagine it being located anywhere else.

Hosted by the wonderfully ebullient and fabulous entertainer, Julie Holestar, the night had all the elements of a sleepover in a mate’s house; chocolate cake, teenage movies, truth-or-dare-esqe revelations and dress-up!

…the screen blared out demands…via the medium of a classic drive-in countdown clock.

For the opening night in this sparkling new location Amy Grimehouse transported us back to 1995 with Todd Solondz’s cult classic Welcome to the Dollhouse. Upon arrival the spectators were handed out (delicious) chocolate cake while being treated to the sounds of some suitably cheesy 80s pop as we waited for the lights to go down. Just to get us in the mood (and into our seats) the screen blared out demands to go to the concession stand via the medium of a classic drive-in countdown clock.

The film itself fuelled the feeling of being transported back in time; following the life and times of the thoroughly geeky and unattractive Dawn Wiener (Heather Matarazzo). Welcome to the Dollhouse encapsulates every unhappy teenager’s worst nightmare but somehow manages to put a comic spin on it all. The situations are familiar, the characters are familiar and the reactions are familiar; we’ve all been there. But thankfully we’ve all grown up and can now look back and laugh at the small-minded bullies that used to make our lives hell.

Queue angst, anger and a surprising amount of bodily fluids followed by tears of laughter…

After the screening (and also during a slight technical mishap) Amy Grimehouse was able to break down the fourth wall and continue the fun through a free “group therapy” session. When the lights came back up (and everybody had been plied with enough alcohol) it was time to share some stories from our childhood. What better way to do this than to take excerpts from that very important, very private diary that every 13 year old once kept and read them to a room full of strangers. Queue angst, anger and a surprising amount of bodily fluids followed by tears of laughter – you have got to love the cringe fest.

Amy Grimehouse looks like it has found its home…

The film is not the most important aspect of this night by a long shot. It is all about the fun-filled shared experience. Every member of the audience seems to have seen Welcome to the Dollhouse innumerable times before but they want go out to dress-up, regress slightly and divulge their deepest, darkest secrets to a room full of strangers in a fun and (more importantly) friendly location. It is a cringingly hilarious night out!

Guaranteed to create a loyal community of patrons; Amy Grimehouse looks like it has found its home and will return to The Book Club on 14 July with a screening of some of the best Golden Girls episodes followed by Bingo and dancing. Tickets are available in advance for £5 or on the door for £10. For ticket information visit; I Hope to see you there!


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