A Very English Film Night at the Sanctum Soho

I never used to consider myself to be very English. Yes, I’m only half, and I’ve spent most of my life living in New York and elsewhere, but recently it’s begun to creep up on me how English I really am.

Like the weekend before last, when I was in my friend’s box at Ascot, I had a very English rude and sweary outburst when I lost a tenner on a horse (which might be about as English as you can get). Or the fact that I now use the word tosser other than to describe someone who might be dressing my salad.

The venue tonight for #ETfilmnight !

A photo posted by Erin Longhurst (@erinniimi) on

Sanctum Soho CinemaSo I was in excellent company a couple of weeks ago when I invited along to a thoroughly English reception, followed by a typically British film at the Sanctum Hotel Soho’s Cinema room by the lovely people at Englishtown.

Sanctum Soho CinemaEnglishtown is part of Education First, and is an online learning course for people who want to learn English.

Sanctum Soho CinemaThey brought together a group of London-based bloggers, who were mostly ex-pats or culturally confused third culture kids like me! It was really nice to meet others who had adopted London as their home – it’s always nice to be around people who are just as enthusiastic and love living in London as much as you do, and not getting asked the question I always get asked at blogger events – but why did you leave New York?

19616351213_b567aa4f19_bI got chatting away to Lili, Erica, Jasmin and Sara (who blogs over at Hello the Mushroom, who took the photo above!) while sampling the very British canapes like coronation chicken, bangers and mash, and fish and chips – with a special gluten free one for me!

Sanctum Soho CinemaThe cocktails were very English too – gin and elderflower, pimms and diamond dubonnet (gin, dubonnet, cider and orange bitters) – all dangerously delicious (and hangover inducing, no doubt).

Sanctum Soho CinemaThe cinema room at the Sanctum is amazing – it feels really intimate, with really comfy leather mermaid chairs. After the reception all the anglophiles snuggled down to a British comedy (Austin Powers, of course) with our goody bags of gin, after eights and, of course, popcorn! It’s been ages since I’ve seen the film, and a lot of the jokes that went over my head at 12 (like the militant wing of the Salvation Army – hilarious!) made it such a great night.

Thank you so much to Englishtown and Talented Talkers for having me – it was such a great night!

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Weird Science | Rooftop Film Club, Shoreditch

As part of my birthday present Mr. A took us out east to Shoreditch. Our relationship is built on the most solid of foundations – a mutual love for cheesy and ridiculous ’80s films, so an outdoor screening of John Hughes’ Weird Science seemed particularly apt!

Rooftop film club, ShoreditchQueen of Hoxton, Shoreditch Rooftop film club, ShoreditchRooftop film club, Shoreditch

The last time I went to an outdoor cinema in the UK was a few years ago when I went to see Ghostbusters at Spinningfields. It had chucked it down then, but that was Manchester – surely London in July would be a better bet? While I had dressed up and looked fairly glamorous (in an attempt not to look too scruffy next to the fashion forward yet casual Shoreditch crowd) the elements were against us, so for most of the evening I ended up looking like this:

Rooftop film club, Shoreditch

Although initially freezing, there was something oddly satisfying about watching a film wrapped up in a blanket under a poncho – it reminded me of going camping. The venue offers barbecue before the film screens, so we had a burger each with some rather healthy looking and lovely sides, which tasted very nice until it all got a bit wet. The rooftop of the Queen of Hoxton was decked out in cheery summery festival vibe and it was all rather sweet.

Rooftop film club, ShoreditchRooftop film club, Shoreditch Rooftop film club, ShoreditchRooftop film club, ShoreditchRooftop film club, Shoreditch Rooftop film club, Shoreditch

We were given headsets and sat in our deckchairs, and settled in. Despite not usually feeling the cold, I doubled up on blankets as I was incredibly chilly, so if you do go I suggest wrapping up warm!

Rooftop film club, ShoreditchRooftop film club, Shoreditch

The film was mad, and really enjoyable – even if slightly non PC by current standards – a very young Robert Downey Junior has a little role in it, too!

Although we had a lovely evening, I guess I’m not sure if we have the right climate for outdoor cinema. In the Mediterranean perhaps, but the past two experiences prove to me how ambitious of an endeavor it is. But who knows – it could be third time lucky!

Rooftop film club, Shoreditch