Girls Rock! Screens For Houston's Own Rocker Girls

Girls Rock!, the 2008 movie about the students of the Rock 'n' Roll Camp for Girls in Portland, Ore., will screen next Thursday, June 3, at Beaver's Icehouse as part of a fundraiser for the first Girls Rock Camp Houston.

The Portland camp, which started in 2005, was the first of its kind in the country, and later spawned camps in other cities, including New York and Minneapolis. Anna Garza, organizer of Girls Rock Camp Houston, decided to bring the event to the Space City after seeing the documentary at the Angelika Film Center. Girls Rock Camp Houston will take place in August.

The movie follows a handful of campers, aged 8-18, as they learn to play instruments and form bands. Laura, a Korean adoptee from Oklahoma, loves metal but struggles to find friends who share her interest or boys who will let her perform with them. Amelia, age 8, writes dozens of solo experimental songs about her pet chihuahua, but has a hard time giving in to the creative nuances that go with being in a group. Misty, who lives with her grandmother, learns to play the bass guitar in just one week.

The film is full of cheesy Terry Gilliam-style animations of the grandmothers of rock, perhaps because the filmmaker couldn't get Kim Gordon or Joan Jett to sign off on the movie, but the goofiness is more than erased by the transformations the girls go under. The camp is split up into ages 8-13 and 14-18, and seeing these young women find their voice, work through disagreements and write songs in just one week is truly amazing. Hollywood Shuffle literally had tears in our eyes more than once.

We also felt the giddiness the girls displayed when they got to meet their idols. Laura, for example, goes nuts over artist-in-residence Beth Ditto of the Gossip. We would have probably done the same thing at that age.

During the screening Beavers will donate a portion of the proceeds from beer, cocktail and appetizer sales to the Girls Rock Camp Houston fund. The bartenders have mixed up a special cocktail and mocktail for the occasion. The fundraiser takes place from 5 p.m. to close.

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