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Drinking at the Movies
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Drinking at the Movies

3.89  ·  Rating details ·  3,906 ratings  ·  349 reviews
In her first full-length graphic memoir, Julia Wertz (creator of the cult-hit comic The Fart Party) documents the year she left San Francisco for the unfamiliar streets of New York. Don’t worry—this isn’t the typical redemptive coming-of-age tale of a young woman and her glorious triumph over tragedy or any such nonsense. It’s simply a hilarious—occasionally poignant—book ...more
Paperback, 192 pages
Published August 31st 2010 by Three Rivers Press
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Average rating 3.89  · 
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 ·  3,906 ratings  ·  349 reviews

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Julie Ehlers
Oct 23, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
After I read Julia Wertz's Tenements, Towers & Trash last year, I decided I wanted to reread her 2010 memoir-in-comics, Drinking at the Movies, which I'd first read in 2011. I'm on a staycation right now and yesterday I seemed to be coming down with a cold that was messing with my concentration skills (false alarm? I feel fine today), so I decided a reread of a graphic novel was about what I could handle. The first time around I was lukewarm about this book, awarding it three stars and a vag ...more
Jan Philipzig
Drinking at the Movies is far from flawless. Like a collection of newspaper strips that weren't meant to be read back-to-back, it often lacks narrative flow, becomes repetitive in places; its social critique is a bit on the shallow, unsurprising side; its protagonist, Wertz' unflattering alter ego, is kind of a slob; oh, and the artwork looks rather amateurish, almost like the rushed and careless scribblings of a child: elbows are difficult to draw, so all characters simply get gumby arms instea ...more
Jan 02, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: graphic-novels
I've been reading lots of superhero stuff lately, so this graphic novel was a nice, refreshing change of pace. Very indie style story about a girl in her twenties moving from SF to NYC. I haven't read Fart Party, her other work, but I really enjoyed the perspective, even though I wanted to throttle her at times for being so self-destructive. It definitely has that hipster "I'm messed up, watch me be unrepentantly messed up" vibe to it, but I enjoyed it and the simple but frequently LOL drawing s ...more
Jan 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was basically everything I wanted in a graphic memoir about moving to New York City: nice, clean drawings, small and funny anecdotes about adjusting to the city with just enough meaning and nostalgia at the end to make me feel hopeful, but not enough to make this too heartfelt and cheesy.

This was mostly just funny stories about the shitty things that happened to Julia in the first year that she lived in NYC. And when I say funny, I mean I actually laughed out loud. This is a graphic memoir
Peter Derk
Jul 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: petestopof2015
Really super good.

This year I've made it a point to look out for comics that are good alternatives to canon titles and that have good female characters. This one hits both.

This book is a really great alternative to some of those titles like Persepolis or Blankets in that it's good comics, a simple story, and it's all told very well. There are genuine laughs, and there's a true style to both the writing and the art.

Okay, it doesn't seem like it's telling an important story. It's not one of those
Sep 25, 2010 rated it really liked it
Julia Wertz is that little voice in your head cracking wise during situations that are absurd or even borderline tragic. Where plenty of (boring) people have learned to silence it, or at least self-edit, Wertz spits out these bits of irreverent nuggets:

"My life is the abortion Juno should have had," the be-T'shirted and bobbed 20-something tells her friend in her graphic memoir "Drinking at the Movies."

The quip comes in a vignette called "Today Everything is Shit" and by "shit" she means a jackh
Jan 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, memoir
I got this book today at B&N. I just kind of grabbed it b/c it looked cute and I love graphic novels by oddball chicks, like Diary of a Teenage Girl and stuff like that. I guess I had the force with me b/c this book turned out to be the greatest thing. I stayed up all night reading it and now I feel gross but I'm not even regretting it. Jenny, you are going to love this. I love how the people have gumby arms with no elbows. And YAY! I own it and don't have to give it back to anyone!!!

Okay, a few
7/31/15: look forward to rereading this new updated edition (just got review copies of the fall 2015 line-up from Koyama Press). I like the look-feel of this one so much more, which just goes to show you how much better comics presses generally are with the production of graphic novels - so much more loving care goes into them.

12/05/15: Yeah, this still holds up well. The book is Wertz's funny-rueful account of her stumbling her way into a new life in New York City as a twentysomething in the l
Sian Lile-Pastore
Mar 28, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another book read with a cold.... This time also drinking a beer and half watching Autumn in New York.
I liked this a lot - only criticism was it felt a bit episodic, so hard to get totally into it. But it was sweet, funny, a little dark, and I liked it, love these graphic memoirs.
Sep 15, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I appropriated this book from my fiancé during a brief vacation just to have something to read. I do enjoy New York stories, a lot, infinitely more than I do the actual city, but probably wouldn’t read this normally on my own accord. Nevertheless, it proved to be plenty entertaining. Lovingly prefaced by Janeane Garofalo in an actual written form, because as it turns out she doesn’t actually type or email, the sort of oddball thing that somehow isn’t all that surprising, and with loads of praise ...more
Sarah Beaudoin
Jan 16, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: comics
Drinking at the Movies seems straightforward on the surface. Wertz (a cartoonist known for her comic Fart Party) writes and draws an account of her first year in New York City. It is a memoir of a 20-something striking out on her own in the model of countless prior stories. In reality though, Wertz creates a memoir that is both funny and painful and provides an entertaining look at what life is when you are a young, underemployed (and frequently unemployed) and unmotivated. No matter what life ( ...more
This is a coming of age story about a 24 yr. old who decides she needs a change in life and moves from San Francisco to New York. She struggles plenty in New York but sticks it out. For most of the book, she drinks, drinks, drinks her problems away. After a night of heavy drinking: "Nnng...I feel like ten kinds of ass."

I enjoyed reading the author's journey of self-discovery, even if she stills has a long way to go. As her mom says to her: "Life is a shit sandwich. You gotta eat it one bite at a
Stephanie (aka WW)
May 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is my second Julia Wertz book and it won't be my last. When I'm reading her, I find myself looking forward to a daily dose of her wry observations on life and self-deprecating humor. She sees small moments of humor everywhere, which, I believe, is the only way to live life sanely. Now, to get my hands on The Fart Party, her best-known book, which, unfortunately, is out of print.
Jan 01, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Belated happy birthday.
Feb 10, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: graphic-novel
I was hoping this would be a lighthearted coming of age graphic novel about moving to a big city for the first time. Unfortunately, it didn't have any of that charm, because it mostly follows the author as she spontaneously decides to move to New York—because she's "different" and impulsive like that—and proceeds to drink her way through her twenties, unable to hold any of the waitressing jobs that come her way yet still considering herself to good for these jobs anyway, practically priding hers ...more
Sam Quixote
Oct 21, 2011 rated it really liked it
This is an autobiographical comic about Julia Wertz's move from San Francisco to New York in her early 20s and the trials and tribulations associated with the transition, as well as the foibles of her own life, friends, and family.

While there are several stories of persons moving to the big city, it's not so much the story as it is the reactions of the characters or the main character in the story that make it stand out. "Drinking at the Movies" works as a great comic book read because Julia We
Hannah Garden
Jul 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: november-2015, reread
Julia Wertz you little tiny king of the world I fucking love your moves, your moves are solid ass gold.

^^oh that is nice I guess I read this for the first time on July 7 2012


I like these strips and hadn't read any in a few years, but after a recent thing at Desert Island for the re-release of this volume decided to re-check em out and yep, still good, still solid ass gold. I remember originally being like oh what a small coincidental world I have had some experiences that mirror such and s
May 27, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2020
Julia Wertz is unquestionably a gifted cartoonist, and while she isn’t always as funny a she’d like to be, when she IS funny she’s a good deal funnier than most. Her timing is great and while she isn’t consistently as funny, she uses the space of the strip for hilarity again and again. Huge talent here, and good knack for storytelling.

I just couldn’t get past the obliviousness of the comic to the incredible privilege of the life described therein. The racial stuff is hard for a non-American to u
Nov 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
I like Julia Wertz's sense of humor, that she has a critical eye for things around her and for herself, and that she knows a mistake before she even makes it. Next time she's looking for a place to live, she should consult with me (I would have totally ruled out WB and recommended Greenpoint. Are you kidding? You like to go to bed early, wake up early, and you give not a fuck about the way you dress? Why would you live in WB? You need the old, far away, un-hip 'hoods full of middle class 1st-3rd ...more
Meghan was right - I liked it a lot. I was aware of Julia Wertz before this - I read that I Saw You: Comics Inspired by Real Life Missed Connections she edited and her iconic character stand-in for herself has been in my peripheral vision for several years. But my preferred illustration style tends toward Craig Thompson and the like, plus if I had actually investigated the character, I would have found that she starred in a comic called Fart Party. Not one to enjoy bathroom humor (unless I'm rec ...more
Jason Pettus
Feb 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing
(Reprinted from the Chicago Center for Literature and Photography []. I am the original author of this essay, as well as the owner of CCLaP; it is not being reprinted illegally.)

I've been a fan for a long time now of Julia Wertz's funny, filthy web comic The Fart Party, so I'm glad to see her get a little more recognition here with her first mainstream, nationally released collection, Drinking at the Movies. And indeed, although a lot of this book simply reprints material already
Jul 04, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfic, graphic
I can't write without apologizing for myself. Even if I try not to, the apologies slip by in secret. Nuances of word choice. What themes are emphasized.

Then I read another autobiographical comic and realize how commonplace all this is. Drinking at the Movies is no exception.

While there were a few minor annoyances in Wertz's style -- her eyes are huge (and oddly asymmetrical?) so she's the most sympathetic, everyone else is exaggerated into how they best reflect her own self-deprecating attitudes
Feb 21, 2011 rated it did not like it
I normally love graphic memoirs like this, I really do. But the banality of Julia Wertz's boring existence just made me wonder why anyone thought her days were worth being chronicled and published. The only virtue to this book I could think of would be possibly helping someone else out of a slump of alcohol-induced depression. It might sound egotistical, but I have more interesting adventures, introspections, and random encounters with strangers on the street on just about any given day than Wer ...more
Mar 09, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This graphic novel was a real mixed bag. For the most part I really related to the author, moving to NY is a bewildering experience for everyone, however I didn't self-medicate my first year here with alcohol. I was quite concerned for the author's liver by the end of the novel. However, like the author I did move to NY from Northern California and, like her, I miss good Mexican food frequently.

Overall, I enjoyed it, but I believe for this book to hold any value for you, you need to be a NYC tr
Mar 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Update: I've just re-read this and it's silly how I rated this book last year because I always remembered it so fondly, AND I really loved it this read-through. 4.5! Everyone read this!

More of a 3.5/3.75. The art is awesome and the humor is on point. I'll probably check out more of Julia's books.
May 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir, comix, new-york
Laughing (and drinking) to keep from crying.
Sep 20, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars
Callie Gonsalves
Jun 28, 2020 rated it liked it
this book has way too much ~I'm not like other girls~ energy
Shalor T.
Nov 25, 2010 rated it really liked it
If you like indie comics, you're bound to like Julia Wertz's latest release into the world of comics. If you don't, then you will probably want to check out some of Wertz's work via the web first. This isn't your typical comic book style so you should be prepared for something quirky & new.

Drinking at the Movies is an autobiographical look at Wertz's early twenties. She manages to lose her San Francisco job, her long distance boyfriend, & decides to move to New York to get a fresh new start on l
Nov 10, 2010 rated it liked it
So, I have never drank at the movies. I have probably had drinks nearly everywhere else, but I have never had alcohol at the movies. Maybe because I don't want to have to pee in the middle of the film. Not sure. Pretty sure that also has nothing to do with my thoughts on reading Drinking at the Movies, but I was thinking about it when I picked up this book, so in some way it is important.

I have not read any of Julia Wertz's earlier work, so I don't have that to compare it to. I guess, simply, I
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Julia Wertz is a professional cartoonist, amateur historian and part time urban explorer/photographer. She made the comic books The Fart Party vol 1 and vol 2 (collected in Museum of Mistakes) and the graphic novels Drinking at the Movies, and The Infinite Wait and Other Stories. In 2017, Hachette published Tenements, Towers & Trash: An Unconventional, Illustrated History of New York City, for whi ...more

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