Earlier this week, a local film buff group called VHS and Chill setup a “Free Blockbuster” kiosk in the Plaza District. I guess it’s a place where local 20-something hipsters who stole their parents VHS collection can trade and share old tapes with Louis Fowler.
Here’s a photo:
Basically, it’s like one of those mobile bookshare library things, but only a bigger hassle. As opposed to grabbing a book and reading it anywhere, with Free Blockbuster you have to: go home; get on the computer; buy a VCR on eBay; wait for VCR to arrive; set it up; plop in a movie; adjust the tracking; fast forward to the nude scenes; rewind it if your done; write a charming letter to the Ebay seller thanking them; watch the letter go viral; and so on.
That being said, I still like this idea. This for a couple of reasons.
1. I’m one of those 40-something white guys with a vinyl collection, so I can’t fault anyone for wanting to watch a movie in a vintage, lo-fi sort of way. There’s a certain charm and ambience to that grainy, less-than-perfect picture. And let’s be honest, who doesn’t feel a little tingle when you see the FBI Warning.
2. I appreciate the irony of using a refurbished Oklahoman newspaper stand as a tool to let people trade archaic technology:
Anyway, it will be interesting to see if this takes off. Will more Free Blockbuster sharing stations appear throughout town? Will Free RedBox DVD stations pop up in Midtown? While we wait, share your VHS tapes and see what Louis has waiting for you…