I suppose it was inevitable. Between the fancy TVs with all the movie channels, that thing that lets you record shows and skip through commercials, and Netflix coming to Canada, it was probably just a matter of time before Schlockbuster, our local independent video store, closed down. (That link could die at any moment. I have a feeling they haven’t even updated that website in the last two years. Enjoy while you can.)
It’s not as though the writing hasn’t been on the wall. I’ve been watching the big chain video franchises close up shop fronts for the last several years.
But I was holding out hope that this place would somehow make it. For one thing, it is easily the coolest video store I have ever seen in my entire life.
It has a fantastic selection of new, old, strange, and hard to find movies, with extremely specific genre sections like “Asian Action” and “The Living Dead.” It has post-its with staff reviews taped to the fronts of the video cases. It has weird and wonderful decor. (An alien here, an electric chair there, a flamingo in a blender up there – everywhere you look is a creepy surprise.) It has a system where you can prepay for twenty movies at a discount and then just wander in and take out movies with only your phone number. It has sweet, quirky staff and reasonable prices.
But their building is getting torn down to put up condos. And they were going to just move, but our neighbourhood is expensive and nowhere else has comparable rent. So now they are selling everything and in two days, they will be gone and bulldozed.
I’m really going to miss them.
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(Here’s a trailer for the vaguely related movie “Be Kind, Rewind.” If you haven’t seen it, rent it. It’s pretty much brilliant.)