The Video Shop

Betamax and beyond

The Video Shop

Postby Fried Gold on Sat Mar 10, 2007 11:20 pm

I went to my local DVD rental place today, a "ChoicesUK" shop. It's been a while since I've been in there, as where I lived before 2007 had a Blockbuster & I rarely used it.

It used to have loads of VHS bargain bins, but they've long since dumped the tapes for DVD. It was very clean. It was very bright. It had lots of copies of Saw 3.

On the way home, I looked in on "Mr Kebab" at the traffic lights. This used to be the real local video shop. A proper video shop. A dark, dank, dingy, smokey place which had a bell which rang as you opened the door and a sticky area where old penny sweets had congealed over time. It even had the awesome name "Steve's Video", Steve being some Polish guy.

I remember having to wait around for a copy of Alien 3 to be returned. I remember the dusty, rarely touched video nasty rack with The Critter peering down at me. I remember the tattered copy of the Return of the Jedi movie, with the plastic peeling back. I remember it having an offer on where you could rent any 5 old videos of your choice for £3 and I rented 80s wrestling and some Action Force videos.

Did every town have a shop like this? Do these places still exist? Did anyone ever rent Caravan of Courage? Do I have long before a mod comes back and deletes this?
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Postby minstrel on Sat Mar 10, 2007 11:37 pm

This is too good to delete. I hope there are places like that, but technology has marched on. As it does.
"Everybody is equally shitty and wrong." - Ribbons
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Postby John-Locke on Sat Mar 10, 2007 11:42 pm

I think every town had a place like that, I remember having to wait months to rent certain films on a Saturday because they were always out, I remember walking to pick up Aliens with my Dad on a Saturday night , it was one of those summer nights where a light rain had brought all the snails out and I must have crunched a dozen or so on my way there, we had reserved the film but when we got there the person who rented it on Friday still hadn't returned it so we had to wait around until 8pm when all rentals had to be back and luckily the person had returned it on time. I remember there being a poster for The Never Ending Story a good year before the film was eventually released and then having to wait like what seemed forever for the film to be available. I remember the Cover for The Deadly Spawn (a film to this day I am still yet to see) which had a gruesome looking mutant monster with what seemed like a million little sharp teeth at the time. I remember picking up a copy of The Fog and saying the films name in my best deep horror voice (I was about 5 or 6) and it must have sounded like I said The Fuck because I got told off for swearing. I remember the cover for The Entity with its moving hologram which used to fascinate me so much. I remember going there once with my mum to rent something, she was wearing a sleeveless white blouse and as I was browsing the selection I thought I saw her picking up a film we had just seen, being a little kid I held her hand and lent into her and said "Mummy we watched that last week" only to be horrified that it was some other lady who was wearing similar clothes "You're not my mummy!" I said and cried.

Ah, memories.
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Postby justcheckin on Sat Mar 10, 2007 11:54 pm

There were two places close to my house when I was a teenager. Both were locally owned only had about 2 copies in VHS of movies that came out, if that many. The better of the two was a 3-part store. It consisted of a convenience store, video store and a liquor store. It also was smoky and dirty. They had a back room that was closed with a dark pink sheet that had the dirty videos. I never went back there so who knows what that was like. Hehe
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Postby Peven on Sat Mar 10, 2007 11:57 pm

justcheckin wrote: They had a back room that was closed with a dark pink sheet that had the dirty videos. I never went back there so who knows what that was like. Hehe



rrriiiiiiiiiiiiigghhhtt :wink:
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Postby justcheckin on Sun Mar 11, 2007 12:08 am

Peven wrote:
justcheckin wrote: They had a back room that was closed with a dark pink sheet that had the dirty videos. I never went back there so who knows what that was like. Hehe



rrriiiiiiiiiiiiigghhhtt :wink:


I was a teenager, and I went there with my mom. However, they did sell us liquor for our graduation week at the beach. We were 18 and didn't get carded.
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Postby Peven on Sun Mar 11, 2007 12:22 am

justcheckin wrote:
Peven wrote:
justcheckin wrote: They had a back room that was closed with a dark pink sheet that had the dirty videos. I never went back there so who knows what that was like. Hehe



rrriiiiiiiiiiiiigghhhtt :wink:


I was a teenager, and I went there with my mom. However, they did sell us liquor for our graduation week at the beach. We were 18 and didn't get carded.


oh great. don't let the kids rent porn because that's dangerous stuff, but go ahead and sell them liquor so they can drink it and go swimming in the ocean. :lol:

coming from rural upstate NY, most every little town had their own video store that fit the description of "dark, dank, and understocked". people would commonly drop off their videos after work, so the best time to pick up the latest releases was between 5-6 at night, though i remember being there around closing and picking up some newer releases that were dropped off by people who had kept them right up until 10 minutes before they would be late. i remember the cover of "I Spit On Your Grave" being scarily mesmerizing, while all the cheesy sword and sorcery b-movies looked like so much fun,so cool, so much better than the movies themselves actually were.
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Postby magicmonkey on Sun Mar 11, 2007 2:10 am

Have you anything with that Steve Martin in it?

Oh, you are not actually a video shop, merely a nostalgic thread that harks back to a more civilised age... Yes, there once were Jedi and they were many until Vader came and slaughtered them all.

Ahhh, the smell of old video stores, where once Rocky sat next to Rambo, Superman soared above Cannonball Run and Empire Strikes Back was always on loan...
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Postby Fried Gold on Sun Mar 11, 2007 9:02 am

justcheckin wrote:They had a back room that was closed with a dark pink sheet that had the dirty videos.

It's interesting the way two countries deal with the mucky tapes.

The US have a separate area for them. The UK is more teasing by having them on the top shelf leering down at you over a copy of Dream Warriors. The current rental place doesn't even have Dream Warriors let alone the filth.
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Postby justcheckin on Sun Mar 11, 2007 9:07 am

Fried Gold wrote:
justcheckin wrote:They had a back room that was closed with a dark pink sheet that had the dirty videos.

It's interesting the way two countries deal with the mucky tapes.

The US have a separate area for them. The UK is more teasing by having them on the top shelf leering down at you over a copy of Dream Warriors. The current rental place doesn't even have Dream Warriors let alone the filth.


Actually now, the big store chains don't have the dirty ones at all, you have to actually go to a XXX store. Or atleast it is like that here.

*um... :oops: why do I know this.... ???*
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Postby WinslowLeach on Sun Mar 11, 2007 9:18 am

Yeah when I first got my VCR in early 83, we had a local video store in my town. This is when I first really became a movie geek. I think I rented movies daily for 2 years at least. When me and my friends werent riding our bikes or playing outside, we were watching movies. I rented ALL kinds of movies, I could rent Rated R movies too, so I saw alot of horror films, action films, adult dramas etc. I still remember discovering movies like "Fistful of Dollars" and "Deliverance", not knowing anything about them but what I saw/read on the box covers. I think our town video store stayed open from 1983 until around 1991-92, then it was gone.
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Postby minstrel on Sun Mar 11, 2007 1:22 pm

Back in the 80s I lived near a town north of Toronto that had one of these stores. It seemed to me like the only person who ever worked there was the owner himself - he must have put in some killer hours. The first VCR in our house was a Betamax, and this guy had a stock of Beta videos (remember those? Of course you don't.)

I rented The NeverEnding Story so many times the guy just made me my own copy, illegally. That's the kind of service you get in a small town store, when you deal directly with the owner.
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Postby Cha-Ka Khan on Mon Mar 12, 2007 10:42 am

There used to be this one place that was more like a shack. When I was around 16, my friend and I used to call there all the time and ask to reserve videos. Of course they'd always be porno. Then my friend would ask the guy on the phone "Is it okay if send my younger brother to pick them up?" LOL like we were fooling anyone, right? Eventually the skeezy guy behind the counter came to know us probably as those "horny teenagers" and we dropped all pretense of the "older/younger brother" scheme. He'd rent us anything.
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Postby Fried Gold on Mon Mar 12, 2007 6:26 pm

You know...in many ways....combining this place with play.com or amazon is pretty much like having a late-80s video shop.
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Postby minstrel on Mon Mar 12, 2007 6:30 pm

Fried Gold wrote:You know...in many ways....combining this place with play.com or amazon is pretty much like having a late-80s video shop.


Yeah, but you don't get the atmosphere of those old shops when you shop online.
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Postby Fried Gold on Mon Mar 12, 2007 6:33 pm

You could always hook up some kind of bell for the door to the room with your computer in. And don't vacuum for a few weeks. And make the room a bit smokey. Black out the windows.

And pretend that amazon only has one copy of everything.
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Postby minstrel on Mon Mar 12, 2007 6:36 pm

Fried Gold wrote:You could always hook up some kind of bell for the door to the room with your computer in. And don't vacuum for a few weeks. And make the room a bit smokey. Black out the windows.

And pretend that amazon only has one copy of everything.


And have creepy unshaven guys who smell funny hanging around the back of the room whispering about porn ...

And an owner who's always on the phone to customers who've had copies of Top Gun out for a month and WE NEED THEM BACK RIGHT NOW ...
"Everybody is equally shitty and wrong." - Ribbons
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Postby Fried Gold on Mon Mar 12, 2007 6:40 pm

minstrel wrote:
Fried Gold wrote:You could always hook up some kind of bell for the door to the room with your computer in. And don't vacuum for a few weeks. And make the room a bit smokey. Black out the windows.

And pretend that amazon only has one copy of everything.


And have creepy unshaven guys who smell funny hanging around the back of the room whispering about porn ...

And an owner who's always on the phone to customers who've had copies of Top Gun out for a month and WE NEED THEM BACK RIGHT NOW ...

Think of it as a role-play for all the family.
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Postby justcheckin on Mon Mar 12, 2007 8:19 pm

minstrel wrote:And an owner who's always on the phone to customers who've had copies of Top Gun out for a month and WE NEED THEM BACK RIGHT NOW ...



HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
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Postby darkjedijaina on Mon Mar 12, 2007 8:30 pm

I worked as video manager in a video department of a grocery store. man, that sucked having to call people that had movies out foreverrrr. and then send them certified mail. and then just charging their credit cards on their accounts for them, because it said i could on their rental agreement. and we had some dirty videos in our grocery store. they were just up top, like FG said. lol.
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Postby papalazeru on Mon Mar 12, 2007 9:04 pm

What a great thread. I used to have 3 places like that, that I went to.

Sunset video...which did some great avent garde films (porn),

Homeview video...unlike the title it wasn't all homemade porn. They used to review films as soon as I touched them.
*reaches for titanic*
Clerk: SHIT! Theres a better love story in aisle 5 unless you want a titanic story where you want "A night to remember", Aisle 4.

or

Concards.....Oh yes, Concards...My youth.
Boy with whiney voice: I was Cliffbanger
Man as reception desk: ok

Boy with whieny voice being me at the age of 7.

They did lety me rent 'Video Dead' which gave me nightmares but then they also let me rent "from Beyond' and "Reanimator" so it was a toss up (quite literally with cliffbanger)
Papa: The musical!

Padders: "Not very classy! Not very classy at all!"
So Sorry "I'll give you a word to describe it: classless."
Cptn Kirks 2pay: ".....utterly unclassy....."
DennisMM: "...Decidedly unclassy..."
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Postby Knthrak on Tue Mar 13, 2007 12:41 am

I work in a video store and as of two weeks ago we sold our last VHS tape. Video Ezy no longer stocks any videos, the irony. Ull never get that old school home feeling again when going to rent a movie.
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The Video Shop

Postby bastard_robo on Tue Mar 13, 2007 2:10 am

When I was a kid, there where a dozen little mom and pop video stores around, and my dad liked going to those becasue he loved horror movies, and that was the bread and butter of those places.

Then WEREHOUSE opend up.. I think around 1990 or so. It was what became Werehouse Music (if you can find them today)

They were the frist real big brand type of store as they sold not only Movies and music, but had a kick ass rental section too. (Tower Records back in the day also use to do this too) We rented there primarly for at least 8 years. We would stray here and there to the local MUSIC + chain which was just like WEREHOUSE, but smaller.

My mom and dad every weekend would take me and my bro down there. I use to raid the kids section all the time.. I rented every copy of VOLTRON they had on tape, and also found ULTRAMAN the animated movie. They had Godzilla Films too. Then they started carrying SNES games and that became a weekly thing.

When my parents split and I moved to Orange County, I refused to rent at Blockbuster as I hated their prices and being only 13/14 they wouldnt let me rent half of the R rated stuff.

I then found 2 little mom and pop places and got my mom to get memberships to both of them. I didnt do much during Jr. High and High School, so I would ride down on my bike and rent about 5 vhs's for the night. I would roam the stores for hours at a time. I once waited 4 Hours in one of the store for a copy of BLADE to be brought back.

I ended up exausting their anime and scifi section, then action. The best part was that they still had all of the random small time cult films that you only hear shit about sometimes.

Now, I rent from a mom and pop place that was burned to the ground, but rose back better than before!

(though not as much as I end up buy half the movies I want to see anyway from Best Buy)
Nobody exists on purpose. Nobody belongs anywhere. Everyone is gonna die. Come watch TV
— Rick and Morty

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