As a kid, Grease was undoubtedly my favourite movie. I knew all the songs and all the dialogue inside-out, I loved the 1950s glamour and the dancing, but most of all I loved the drive-in. Row upon row of convertibles in front of a huge screen created (in my eyes) the potential for the most romantic setting imaginable – cuddled up watching a movie under the stars.
Now, thanks to Damian Barr, the retro American-style Drive-in is being revived 2010-style… and it’s coming to London. The ultra-trendy Old Truman Brewery on Brick Lane, to be precise.
The man who brought us Silent Cinema, the Shoreditch House Literary Salon and Reader in Residence now, in partnership with Volvo, brings us the Starlite Urban Drive-In: “We all grew up with the drive-in dream,” says Damian. “But it never happened in Britain because we don’t have the space, the weather, or that car culture. I wanted to update the idea and make it work for an urban, eco-conscious audience and this seemed the perfect way to do it.”
For just £25 per person, you get to kick back in a shiny new Volvo convertible, order cocktails and popcorn from roller-skating waitresses and enjoy fabulous retro canapes. There’ll be no “sshh-ing” of the crowds either, as you’ll be enjoying the film through your car’s stereo, adding that extra level of intimacy to the viewing experience – which is what Silent Cinema was all about.
On Friday night (2nd July) there’s the chance to go all girly over Patrick Swayze with a screening of Dirty Dancing, then on Saturday (3rd) you’ll be transported back to the 50s for real with the ultimate drive-in movie, Grease. Although advance tickets for both nights are sold out, there’ll be more released on the day – so make sure you join the Facebook Group and keep an eye on the website for more details.
Keep an eye on Alice Writes for my review of the VIP screening on July 1st…