Rewind This! (2013) Movie Script

If it grabs me
then we'll get it.
That's, uh, that's the
name of the game.
I don't have any
hard, fast rules.
I just kind of...
I just kind of look, you know.
Obviously, I'm gonna be
looking for some-some trash.
Some cheese.
We're lookin' for Chuck.
We're lookin' for
Charles Bronson.
We're lookin' for
Dolph Lundgren.
That kind of thing.
I've seen a lot of...
door handles.
They got, uh... doorknobs.
And, uh... lotion.
I- I never expected to see
a whole table full of...
lotions and... shave gel.
We've got socks here.
All the socks
you could possibly want.
Still waiting on some tapes.
Still hoping
for some tapes here.
Doll heads... doll heads.
It's the same old stuff.
I'm surprised to not
already have seen Titanic.
That's, like, the most...
most common tape I see.
The two disc.. er...
two tape Titanic... um...
Oh, what do you know?
It's the-the
two tape Titanic.
I'm gonna have to
go with Shakedown.
We're gonna have action.
You can see it right here.
There's explosions.
And there's Peter Weller.
What else do you need?
- A dollar.
- A dollar?
We've got five for two.
Got some kids clamshells.
But we also got some other ones
we're gonna go through.
No, definitely not.
Clarissa... can't explain that.
The Adventures
of Timmy the Tooth
is something very creepy
that I have
personal nostalgia for.
It's been a long time.
- Thank you.
- Thank you.
Something about dental movies,
animated things that they make
for-about, uh-dental hygiene,
always seem to be really creepy.
Frank Gorshin is in this movie.
Frank Gorshin was, of course,
The Riddler,
on the original Batman.
So, I hate to say it, but...
We're gonna have to buy
Game Day,
starring Richard Lewis.
Uh, the Gorsh factor just hit.
It just sunk in.
Titanic. Two tape
Titanic set, again. Always.
You know you're gonna
have to rewind it.
Why not just go ahead
and buy a rewinder?
And there was this thing
in the corner,
next to the TV, that...
my parents said,
"It's for playing
and recording movies".
I saw this thing and I thought,
"Well, How does it work?
This sounds like heaven".
VHS tapes were so widespread,
and they were so common,
and so prevalent... that...
I think for most people...
they were just sort of part of
the everyday, you know,
background of your life,
growing up.
Or, if you were an adult
during that time frame,
they're just something
that you had.
It wasn't until a little,
you know,
maybe by '84 or 5,
where everybody and
their mother had the machine.
Because we'd had
just enough Christmases
to get the machines
in everybody's home.
Videocassette got me, you know,
hooked on movies.
I loved going to movies
as a kid,
but the VHS tapes,
bringing those movies home,
I could watch them
any time I wanted.
Getting us all together to go
to the theater was a big deal,
and it didn't happen very often.
We had to get there, pay,
get popcorn, all that.
So, home video was the standard
for me.
They opened,
in our neighborhood,
this, uh, video store.
And it was called Pop N' Go.
And my mom is from Mexico,
and she would call it
So she would alway say,
"Oh, Let's go to Po-Ping-O."
And the popcorn was so good.
I remember going,
and the giant, like,
cardboard cut-outs
of, like, movies coming soon.
And that's the first time
I ever saw The Toxic Avenger,
in the giant cut-out.
And I was a little kid,
and I was like,
"I've gotta watch this."
Back then it was huge.
It was like
the Friday night thing to do.
And it was, you know, I mean,
you really
took your time thinking
'cause you-it was $29 to join.
You know, so it wasn't
free to join.
So I'd spend my Saturdays,
get on my little bicycle,
my Ninja Turtles bicycle,
and go from one store
to the next,
like, looking for this title.
Whatever it might be.
And I remember specifically,
I really wanted to see
Basket Case.
And none of the video stores
had it.
And so, for like, months,
I would go to every one,
and be like, "Did you's guys
get Basket Case yet?
I wanna see Basket Case."
I saw Apocalypse Now is out,
and I went "Oh, I need that."
And then I saw
Blood Feast was out.
And I went, "Oh my God,
I need that."
And I saw Beyond the Valley
of the Dolls was out.
"Oh my God, I need that."
So, I bought my first Betamax,
you know, with the top loader,
with the big piano keys,
and the remote
was attached to a wire.
You know, so it
really wasn't even a remote.
Well, video took cinema
out of the movie theater.
So, you know,
it takes a lot of money
to build a movie theater.
It takes a lot of seats.
You put the seats in,
you have to get all the people
to sit in the seats
to make it profitable.
And so I think, If you-
If you say worldwide,
yeah, I think it was
kind of like a democratization.
It was a form of wider exposure.
It's Friday night,
you're with your friends,
you're having a sleepover,
you're at the video store.
You wanna make each other laugh
by finding
the dumbest thing possible.
I think that was a huge, huge
part of it, really.
Sitting around
with your friends, laughing,
eating pizza...
What is better than that?
It was a very special time,
where you could,
all of a sudden,
be introduced to all of
this stuff that never...
never would have been available.
Never would have shown on TV.
Um, never would have been
in your movie theater.
Certainly in a place
like Nottingham,
which is kind of a small city
in England.
I grew up on 42nd Street.
So I had access to movies...
the average person
normally wouldn't have, unless,
I guess, you lived next door
to a drive-in or something.
So I loved the fact that
I was seeing crap
that no one had even heard of.
What surprised me was
how much of that crap
came out on VHS.
I'm very proud to say
that I have 82 movies
that start with "dead",
"death" and "deadly".
82. So, I've really made it.
I'm really a great
success in life.
Above you can see that I have
my big boxes,
my oversize clamshells.
Things like that.
Um... I have things
to keep things simple.
The way I've done it, is color.
Because to me it looks the most
aesthetically pleasing.
I just tried doing it
in a Roy G Biv kind of way.
And just came all the way down
to black and white.
I also do my books that way.
And for me it's a system
that totally works.
You can ask me any video
and I can be like,
"Okay, that one's green."
and pick it out.
And it's really easy for me,
and I think it looks
really nice.
This is one of my
all time favorites, though.
Corey Haim: Me, Myself and I.
So good.
I know Corey passed, ya know.
And I love Corey.
I'm not really even
making fun of him,
but this is
the awesomest thing ever.
The direction in my life
right now
I guess proceed with, um...
in the business, is...
gradually, um,
from being the little boy,
from a younger,
you know, brother,
trying to get to be
the older brother,
or the only brother.
I don't know if this is
the pride of my collection.
This is the tape that I've
gotten the most fun
out of recently.
It's called
Bubba Until it Hurts.
"It's for men and women...
It's not just
another pretty workout."
3, and 4, and 5, and 6, and...
"Unlike many exercise programs,
Bubba Until it Hurts
utilizes a minimum of jumping."
"The lack of jumping
up and down
makes this program ideal
for apartment house dwellers."
It's just like, why would you
put that on your VHS?
Like why would that ever be
a marketing point?
And at the end he goes,
he's like
"Now that you've met my friends,
let's get to work...
I love you."
He says "I love you."
"I love you,
now let's get to work."
It is like, "Whoa, Bubba Smith,
not until it hurts, please."
In order to get to it,
You've got to go through it.
I love you and welcome to
Until it Hurts.
We have my favorite movie here,
I have Heavenly Bodies.
Three copies of it.
If you love aerobics,
if you love Canadian features,
this is exactly where
you need to go.
Rolling Vengeance, see,
it's coming right at ya there.
It's even got a drill
right in front,
because it's fuckin' badass.
This is one of my
prized possessions.
The Leslie Nielsen
Bad Golf Made Easier,
signed by Leslie Nielsen.
I don't know if you can get in
on the gold signature
of the man himself.
Stand directly
in your opponent's line,
and lean imperceptibly
to one side or another
as he tries to read the break.
This is a movie called
Death Rider.
This is a shot-on-video western.
And it is really one of the most
hypnotically awkward things
that you will ever see.
I thought
you were dead, Clayton.
No, that's my brother you're
talkin' about.
And it's kind of
a passion project
by this guy Ronald Koontz,
who is the lead actor, writer,
director, editor, cameraman,
and he 'proudced' the film.
Probably my favorite 'proudcer'
is Ronald Koontz.
Now I'm getting into
all the ones that I gasp about.
The Windows 95 Easy Instruction
Video Guide,
featuring Matthew Perry
and Jennifer Aniston
in character.
Because this was
right when Friends started.
So it's all this, like,
"Oh really? You click
on the start window?"
That is pathetic.
When I first started,
I was like,
"Oh man, dude,
I have 80 movies."
It was just, like,
phenomenal to me
that I could, like,
pick through 80 movies.
But then I got to 500 and...
pretty soon I go to 1,000.
Zombies, occult, supernatural,
slasher movies.
I got a slasher closet
over there.
If there's at least three movies
that I can categorize together,
I'm like, "Okay, that can be
a sub-genre.
So I have one right now,
it's got four movies
and it's about homeless horror.
Get a job, loser,
you shit your fuckin' pants.
So, that's
a little sub-genre I have.
I've learned a lot about
culture in general,
just by doing all these
little sub-sections.
There's a lot of things
you have to search out.
A lot of things
you have to look for,
not even knowing
what you're looking for.
And you might find
something that
you never knew was out there.
The video revolution
began in Japan in the mid-70's,
when the engineers at Sony
began to develop a tape format.
And at the same time,
the engineers at JVC,
they developed their own.
Back then, you know,
everything was Betamax/VHS.
And so, you went to a store,
there was always both formats.
they used to charge
$3 more for a VHS tape,
because you were
buying more plastic.
Really nothing happened
in any numbers until '79,
when it began to explode.
Both formats were originally
fighting for the supremacy.
And it was sort of thought
that maybe
both could exist together.
Which proved not to be the case.
I, of course, bought Beta.
So, you know, wasted
all these zillions of videos,
that I bought
in the Beta format.
And, of course, Beta went
bye-bye very soon after.
If you're looking at
videocassette recorders,
and you're confused
by all your choices
just look at the most
important feature of all,
The picture.
And Sony Betamax records
a sharper picture than VHS.
Beta was technically superior,
but, it had one huge flaw,
which was that it was
only one hour long.
VHS format was two hours long.
VHS videocassettes play longer,
which can save you money.
Big deal.
One of my closest friends is
Robert A. Harris,
the restorationist.
And he was always talking
about the latest technologies.
He was keeping me alerted
about the war
between Beta and VHS,
and how the cheaper one
was gonna win,
because the public
just doesn't give a shit.
He was correct.
When I rented
The Last Unicorn on Beta,
and stuck it in my grandmother's
VHS player.
That was not good.
That's when I
understood the difference
between VHS and Beta.
'Cause I didn't get to watch
The Last Unicorn that night.
For any TV show, like, whatever,
any new show
that's out right now,
of course their goal is
"Well this is gonna be on DVD,
it's gonna be on Hulu,
it's gonna be watched
forever and ever."
But back then,
they didn't really realize that.
Oh, and you've missed
your football on TV.
Anything for you, Mom.
- Oh, you are a good boy.
- Bye!
When you have a
Phillips television recorder,
you don't have
to miss anything.
The Phillips
television recorder
records TV when
you can't watch.
So you can replay anytime.
Who the...
The Phillips
television recorder.
I don't think any
member of the audience
actually said,
"Gee, I need a machine
that will help me
control my schedule."
But once the machine was made,
then they came up with
concept of time-shifting,
and that was a concept
that really worked.
That you could actually
shift the TV schedule around.
They've made it
so simple to use,
the cat can operate it.
Kitties, I want you to record
an ITV program at 10:30.
Sony C6. So simple,
the cat can use it.
The TiVo age only exists,
because we were raised with VHS.
Because we were
the first generation that could
be sent to bed with a promise,
"It'll be here tomorrow
when you get up."
That changed our relationship
with television.
I discovered that, uh...
I could program the VCR.
That was, like, a big day...
You know for me,
Like, as a nine year-old
to get around the
parental controls
and tape R-rated things.
You can watch your TV shows
when you wanna watch it.
That's the advertising campaign
that really pushed Betamax
to the top of the heap,
and was a big success
for two years,
until VHS caught up with them.
With an even better
reason to buy it,
because they could
record longer.
Suppose it's over three hours.
Relax, Panasonic VHS tapes
up to four hours
of sports, movies, specials,
on one cassette.
VHS used that
to actually win out
in the format war with Sony.
At a certain moment in time,
people were like,
"I don't like that you can
share this thing with people.
I wanna control
the mechanism of distribution."
You know, "Only programmed
on television",
right, you know.
"Only available
in movie theaters."
So when the VHS tape comes out,
for a ton of the people involved
on the manufacturing side,
it's a watershed.
But there's people
in content and distribution,
before everyone has decks
and they can monetize it,
they're like, "I don't know
if this is a good thing or not."
So this whole notion
of selling something,
where you lost control entirely,
was a new notion.
And it made major movie studios
very, very nervous.
Box office kept increasing,
so it's not like
people are staying home
and avoiding the movie theater.
It's a new bunch of people
putting new money
into home video.
And that's what's really driving
this incredible explosion
of the film industry
in the 1980's.
The guy who financed
Brain Damage for me
was a man named Andre Blay,
and he's credited
with starting this.
He had a company in Michigan
called Magnetic Video,
that was dealing mainly
with 3/4 inch tapes
for industrial use.
And he got the idea one day,
"Wow, I wonder if I
could put Hollywood movies
on half inch."
When I made the decision
to buy movie rights,
I said, "Well, I gotta go
to all the Hollywood studios."
And I wrote them a letter
saying that the
home video revolution
is about to begin.
And I could help start
this new industry.
So he writes a letter
to all the major studios
about, you know,
"C'mon, give me a film,
I'll put it on tape,
and we'll see what happens."
And no studio was interested.
They thought it was
a crazy idea,
they thought it was
a stupid idea,
They thought it would
devalue the films...
But Fox said, "Eh, fine,
let this guy do it.
If he fails, he fails.
You know, who cares?
We'll get some money out of it."
This is pre-Star Wars,
so 20th Century Fox
is probably a company
that's not doing that well.
In any case,
they hedged their bet.
They gave him films that were
at least four years old.
The Sound of Music,
and, you know,
Patton, and all that stuff.
And, uh, they sold for
an exorbitant rate.
They were like, 89, 99 dollars.
The only world we recognized
was getting our films
in the theaters.
Charlie Band was the
only one in our circle
that was thinking about
the home video market.
So what I did was I thought,
"Well, let me go
find or license the rights
to other successful
independent films.
Even my lawyer had no real idea
of how to write the document,
'cause no documents
had been written prior
to license these video rights.
You know, what is the territory,
what is the price? No idea.
It was a pioneering time
because nothing existed.
Next step, let's not sell them
the pre-recorded tapes,
let's actually rent it to them.
Andre never anticipated
the rental market.
And he said he remembers
the day he got a phone call
from a store saying,
"Hey, can I rent this?"
And he went, "... No!"
And the store says,
"Well my lawyer said I can."
And it was like, "Oh, no."
You know, so, that started it.
And, uh, the punch line
to Andre's story
was eventually...
all the studios saw how
lucrative the market was.
They all came out
with their own,
you know, label.
Except for Fox, of course.
So, Fox had to buy Andre out.
They had to buy-So he-
Whatever he bought it for, boy,
he quadrupled that, okay?
The video at that point
was kind of taking over
for the drive-in circuit.
Video was the new market
for the kids to rent
the horror films,
and the films they wouldn't see
at the mainstream theater.
Well, I definitely
don't think that
my career would have gone
where it had, without video.
My movie was released in
all kinds of foreign countries
on video.
If it wasn't for video, for me,
I know my popularity would be
much, much smaller than it is.
When videocassettes
first came in,
we jumped in, we loved it.
We thought it was great.
And, in fact, it was great.
And there were
mom and pop shops,
there were video stores
opening up all over the country,
all over the world...
that needed movies.
In the early days, the appetite
for video was so pervasive,
people could pick
the wrong location,
they could pick
the wrong videocassette titles,
they could hire surly staff,
they could have terrible hours,
and horrible policies,
and people were still
gravitating to these stores.
It was just-
there was such a hunger for it.
So the idea of having movies
that were at your disposal
when you wanted them was...
kind of remarkable.
And there was no talk of
picture quality or aspect ratio,
or any of that.
It was just availability.
So you had to kind of be aware
that as much as you wanna use
that frame right to the edge,
you wouldn't. You'd kind of...
give yourself a little
cheat on either side,
'cause you knew that
when it went to video,
the edges would be cut off.
I looked at a few of them,
I was appalled at the
improper aspect ratios.
And the lack of rich contrasts
and resolution, and, uh...
never did buy one.
And predicted
they wouldn't catch on.
Original aspect ratio
never caught on
'cause people thought
they were being gypped.
"I've got black bars on the
top and bottom of my picture!"
Yeah! That's so
you see the sides!
They ne-it never sunk in!
Now I know people that
have the widescreen TV's,
so if they watch Casablanca,
they zoom in on it
to fill up the picture!
I don't get it, I don't get it.
I don't get it.
Sometimes it looks better
than the widescreen.
If you get the VHS of
Pat Garrett & Billy The Kid,
it's horribly pan and scanned
and, like, they
zoom in at times.
But it's got this
interesting aesthetic to it,
which I like
and actually prefer that.
You can't make that
camera movement with a camera,
like, it only exists in
however they used
to make the pan and scan.
So when you saw stuff like that,
you just thought, like,
"That was a weird
camera movement."
I don't know,
I-I enjoy pan and scan.
It doesn't bother me.
I don't like it when it's
completely cropped...
Like, where they just
cut it off.
Where they just
don't give a shit.
They just cut
the left and right off,
and then stuff is missing.
Or when they smoosh it,
I don't like that.
But I like that weird... the-
the weird ones
where it moves back and forth.
I think that's pretty good.
Oh, fantastic! Closer, closer.
The warmth, the wetness.
This is what it's all about!
This is heat.
This'll make me famous!
We gotta talk
about the VHS movement.
And I've been lucky.
I've been there
at all the innovations.
I've been here
at all the changes.
We went from a
qualitative media,
to a quantitative media.
The video concept
made it easier,
but did it make it better?
I don't know.
It was the very tail-end
of the theatrical distribution,
and it was more of, um,
video stores were just
popping up all over.
So you had a lot of independent,
adult bookstores,
and business was thriving.
The video boom
came out of the facility
to watch this material at home,
and no longer have to be
ashamed, theoretically,
to go to a theater.
And I knew that
once this door was open
it would never be closed.
Why don't you
move the teddy bear
and come sit by me.
Nah, I got a better idea,
why don't you come over here.
Pardon me, Teddy.
Any major consumer
electronics medium...
it's success or failure
in the market
will be determined based on
it's relationship with the adult
entertainment business.
And I think VHS is
where we learned that.
I like the way a film looks,
but I think that video
probably makes the end consumer
feel like he's
a part of the experience.
What video did change
about the porn industry
was the idea that since
we're distributing on video,
we can shoot on video.
Changed the economics
of that business.
And made the business
so much bigger
than it had ever been before.
What if we took these big boxes
you know, in their trays
and made them smaller,
and maybe even we
could attempt to sell them
in alternative markets,
like airports or bookstores.
And they were selling
like hot cakes.
And the business took off.
And that's how we created
the sell-through title.
Media had this crazy idea
of releasing tapes
at the, then,
shocking price of $19.95.
They were calling it
Every other company was going,
"Oh that's a stupid idea,
it's ridiculous."
You know, 'cause they thought
the more money it cost,
the more money you'd make.
"Gee, I wish they'd sell
Basket Case for that."
Because it would be
the only film like that.
A disreputable, unrated,
blood and gore film,
out on the market. And...
teenagers, which were
my core audience,
they couldn't afford $49.95,
but they could all
afford 20 bucks.
Media thought it was
a terrible idea.
They thought it was
such a bad idea, they said,
"We'll do it, but,
if it doesn't move,
we're gonna go right back
to the regular price."
By the time Halloween
came around, my god,
Basket Case was everywhere.
We made a fortune.
It did spectacular. I mean,
I bought this apartment.
This was my down payment
that I needed from the bank
to buy this apartment.
Suddenly the sell-through
market was born.
I'd like to think Basket Case
had a lot to do with that.
It was great for independents
because, the major studios
really caught on very slowly,
to video.
And there were so many
examples of independent films,
that were brand new
to that audience,
that were more desirable
than the big studio films.
So, many times, those little
pictures would out-perform,
Not theatrical, on TV and other
deals that were happening.
But when it came to
the video market,
in those early days,
it was incredible.
It's the return of cult hero
Freddie Krueger!
And for the past two summers,
Freddie's nightmares
have been the nation's top
video rental titles.
Now, it's Freddie's
third time around,
and he's all set to
claw his way
beyond the 200,000 mark!
The advent of home video also
made companies very successful.
Very small companies
very successful.
And I think that's largely
why we have so many
insane VHS oddities now,
is because there would be a huge
Hollywood movie that would hit,
like Indiana Jones or
Friday the 13th,
and you would get a whole
plethora of films
that were aping that,
made for 12 cents.
Production price tag, you know,
Terminator, 80 million,
Puppetmaster, $400,000.
It's like, you know, it's not
an even playing field,
but in the video store,
they're all on the same shelf,
they're all in
the same size boxes.
Look, if idiots like Troma
can make a movie that...
sells million and millions
of dollars of videocassettes,
well, then anybody can do it.
Distribution was handled
very differently.
There were
a lot more distributers.
There were people that were
willing to experiment
in home video.
It was so new that it felt like
the wild west.
It felt like anybody
could get a foothold
and be a major player
in VHS distribution.
I was approached by
a couple of producers who..
Wanted to produce a video which
would go straight to home video.
And this was something new.
My idea was I would create
an electronic aquarium.
People found this intriguing.
Here was this new thing
that used this new medium
that had been created.
What really, I think, caused
the early explosion in video,
was Jane Fonda's workout tape.
And now count to four.
Heels forward.
And then, one... two... three...
So, this was a tape that
did something original,
which was, gave you
an opportunity to exercise,
in your home, in front
of your TV, by yourself.
Don't need to go to a gym.
It was a very good concept.
And it had never really
been done before.
Well, the early days of video,
it was a seller's market.
It was great. I mean,
they couldn't get enough.
This was a worldwide exposure,
and there was a window
where if you made
a clever movie,
and it was relatively well done,
and it was in the right genre,
you know, it was an action film
or horror, or sci-fi,
you would make some money.
So it was Toei,
which is one of the...
traditional major studios
in Japan,
that sort of launched this
straight-to-video market.
Whereas, in the U.S., largely,
video was, for a very long time,
sort of demonized
by the traditional studios.
Vestron Video,
they were very aggressive.
If you had a movie, and
you went to some place life AFM,
the American Film Market,
or Cannes,
and the video rights for your
movie were not locked up,
almost immediately,
you'd be visited
by a salesperson from Vestron,
saying, "Here... here's a
million dollars right up front,
give me the movie.
In the initial stages,
you would go into a store
and find something
that you wanted.
You wouldn't see a commercial,
you wouldn't read anything
in the magazine or newspaper.
I mean, it was just that new.
All these stores were opening up
and they needed to fill
the shelves with new titles.
So there was this huge demand.
It didn't matter
if they were good or bad.
You have a pretty
flourishing industry
that's based on
renting video tapes.
30 to 35 thousand video rental
stores across the country.
Most often
mom and pop operations.
Charlie would have
title contests
for his employees.
And if you came up with a title
that he used, you'd get $500.
So everybody would come up with
10 or 15 titles
and he would narrow it down to,
like, a hundred,
and then he would
commission box art.
And then Austin Furst would
come in from Vestron.
He would just come into the room
and he'd go around, and say,
"I'll take that one,
and that one,
and that one, and that one."
And then Charlie would bring
the writers and directors in
and then say, "I want you
to do this one and that one."
That was an era of great
equivalency at video stores.
I think people
would rent anything
with a cover
that interested them.
It wasn't about studio,
it wasn't about movie star,
it wasn't about budget.
When you're looking at a shelf,
it's very democratic.
The best cover catches your eye.
One thing I do, is go to video
stores whenever I'm in them,
and find the movie,
and I pick it out,
and I put it flat
so it's facing front.
A little extra advertising
can't hurt.
I really do.
I'm like, looking around to see
that nobody looks.
A lot of them I picked
just on the cover art.
That's a cover buy.
Have I watched it?
I'm not gonna lie to you and tell you
I've watched this movie.
But, if this happens somewhere
in it, then it's a good movie.
Also, there's something
to be said
about something so large,
you could kill
a small child with this.
Like, you could bludgeon
somebody to death with this.
That was a handful, when you
bought one of those.
And it left a lot of space for
a really good artist
to actually create something
that in itself
was a work of art.
When you did a major film
it was fun to see it.
It's the kind of job that
a lot of illustrators
really cherish,
and love to do.
It used to have a battery and
you'd press the button,
and then Frankenhooker says,
"Wanna date?"
Um... Because that's
one of her catchlines...
catchphrases in the movie.
"Wanna date?"
She's a Frankenhooker.
I have the box
but it doesn't work anymore.
But it was this talking box.
And you'd press here,
and you'd hear a voice go
"Wanna date?"
When you push the button on
the box, she goes, "Wanna date?"
It was obsessive.
You just sat there,
"Wanna date?" "Wanna date?"
"Wanna date?" Wanna date?"
When this was in the stores,
that's all people were doing.
I think the talking box
did more to sell the movie
than the movie did.
"If you only see
one movie this year,
it should be Frankenhooker."
Of course it should be.
I mean you see things
that are like,
wow, this box art
is not selling.
And, especially being a buyer
for as long as I have,
I can really look at stuff
and go,
"This box art
will sell this movie."
Looking at those, like
2000 Maniacs, just...
the blood coming
out of the mouth,
or the Color Me Blood Red,
with the woman, like,
just totally splayed.
Guts hanging out.
I was just like,
"That is for me."
People have a certain amount
of nostalgia
for kinda old VHS stuff.
And some of it was pretty great.
Most of it was awful.
I mean, if you're
objective about it.
There are terrible, terrible,
unspeakably bad movies
that have some of the
best covers I've ever seen.
I admire the fact that
those companies figured out,
"Man, all we gotta do
is wrap it nicely."
This was ultimately used
as a video cover,
for Chevy Chase Funny Farm.
Sometimes it's just the
simpler image that read better.
It was a great way
for so many artists
to make a living,
and there was a lot of
great art produced,
especially during
the 70's and 80's.
We would fight to get our
name in there, and...
some would allow it and
others would take it out.
And so we'd kinda
hide it in somewhere.
My name is in the hair.
If you turn it upside-down
and have a look at it,
you'll see it.
When somebody does kind of
a cheap, fast photoshop,
here's a bunch
of floating heads,
you know, buy it because
these actors are in it.
Like, that artwork isn't gonna
move the needle at all.
I dunno what happened, I mean,
they actually used to use color.
I don't see color
all that frequently.
It's like they're designing
shit for dogs.
I think that everyone forgot how
awesome a painted cover is,
of a dude with his shirt off...
holding a machine gun.
Why would you
take a photo of that
when you can paint a
beautiful portrait of it.
That's the stuff
that's gonna keep it
out of the mainstream.
You know, the big box stores
don't want that painted artwork.
The amount of work I was given
from the movie studios
really started to slow down
in the early 90's.
Then, all of a sudden, they said
that I had to learn how to do it
on a computer,
or they couldn't use me anymore.
Once I mastered
the tool of the computer,
I was able to create
what I did before,
maybe even a bit better.
Don't give me art.
I can't stand art.
The worst covers on the planet.
I'm sorry, guys.
They're the most
boring covers ever made.
How could you not
wanna see this?
How could you not
wanna own this?
My god... you know, this...
this is a cover.
- Yeah.
- Yeah.
Criterion, go fuck yourself.
This is how you sell it.
So by 1986,
home video is giving
as much money to Hollywood
as the box office.
And it's all new money.
20th Century Fox is bought up
by the News Corporation.
Paramount is
bought up by Viacom.
Because of home video,
you actually have Sony,
an electronics manufacturer,
deciding never to lose
a format war again.
And the way to do that was to
buy up a film studio.
So they bought Columbia.
So by the 1990's,
you have a new landscape
of media conglomerates.
And they represented that film
was switching over
to a major brand.
That you can spin-off from film,
into many different markets
with the sales of videos, music,
toy action figures,
etcetera, etcetera, etcetera...
You know, we're down now,
to the same basic five or six
corporate pipelines that supply
almost all of our media,
and unfortunately,
they're not voracious enough
to sort of reach outside
their own catalogues.
So you don't have
that sort of...
hunger in the
marketplace anymore.
Blockbuster came in
and they took over.
And they really got rid of all
the mom and pop chains.
It's name says it all.
It was about blockbusters.
That's all they were
interested in.
Video rental is gone.
You know, that was the
dominant way of seeing films,
you know, 20 years ago.
And it's dead.
Even though we lost all that,
yes, we have the internet
I'm not gonna say that
the internet isn't great.
It's incredible. In some ways
it's almost worth it.
Yeah, there's definitely a sense
of loss, of course, I think.
But, it's awesome to see
the places that
are still around,
like Cinefile, Odd Obsession,
I Heart Video, Vulcan.
They're still going strong.
This is our video tape costume,
that we have someone who, uh...
gets in and jumps around, during
the trivia contests that we do.
And it's pretty easy to get on,
you just slide it...
Kinda like this.
And jumps around like that.
We were thinking of hiring some
guy to just be on the sidewalk
and just waving
at people. But...
nobody wants to do that
for minimum wage.
What VHS had, because it
dominated for so long,
was just an appetite.
They had to fill those shelves.
They had to have
new product out.
And so distributers reached
deep into their catalogues,
and they had to.
That was, I think,
the greatest era of discovery.
VHS had an unusually long life
for a home video format.
And I think that is something
that we'll never see happen again.
We'll never see Blu-Ray dominate
the market for 15 years.
It just won't happen.
When I first started
it was like,
I'm a college grad,
I've had a business, and now I'm
gonna work in a flea market.
People would ask me in church,
or whatever,
I sell movies
at the flea market.
And it's like "Ugghh!"
The funny thing about digging
through all of Wayne's stuff
at the house...
Is that there's no separation
whatsoever between genres.
Basically you'll have, like
The Brave Little Toaster
and then Enormous Wangs of
The Northern Yukon, er whatever,
and they're just, like,
right next to each other
'cause they're both
oversize boxes.
That's a great film, you should
check that one out.
We're The Picture Show.
Been here since 1990.
Got lots of customers that were
kids, would come in,
their parents would
buy 'em kids movies,
are now married and bringin'
in their kids.
So, that's the biggest thing
that keeps me goin'.
And so I have people comin' in,
most of them over 55 or 60,
that still like VHS,
still buy VHS,
that's what they want.
And then, young guys like you,
who are collectors,
and they want the old stuff,
and they wanna get into
all that.
This is a typical VHS buyer.
Uh, kind of, low-class.
Here's a movie about a
donkey named Paco.
"He'll steal your heart
and your wallets."
Wayne charges a lot for his VHS.
Like, you know, way more than
anyone else in America
probably charges for their VHS.
It's like a flat rate of 9 bucks
if he likes you,
10 bucks if he doesn't.
And there's no way on earth that
Paco is worth 9 bucks.
He actually is stealing
my wallets.
You gotta have
the real movie people.
The people that know
you can't get this stuff
on Netflix, or whatever.
And those people
are fewer and fewer.
I've just kept on keepin' on.
But you have a personal...
fondness for VHS I'm sure.
Oh sure, Yeah,
I still watch VHS.
And if I've got a choice
to watch somethin'
I got all this new stuff around
here, but I'll end up watchin'
an old movie. You know to me,
it's like an old friend.
We display about
17,000 titles on VHS.
We display about
12,000 titles on DVD.
Probably up there,
I have another...
15, 20,000 duplicates,
and around here
in the two rooms,
I probably have close to
another 50,000... VHS.
So, that's over 100,000?
50, 60, 70, yeah,
probably at least 80, 85, maybe.
And I don't really know.
I'm not countin' 'em.
This is the video room
inside Wayne's house,
which is like total chaos.
Like the earth has vomited up,
you know, 12 video stores.
You do the best
out in the country.
You don't wanna be in town.
You're fightin' all the
Best Buys
and the Wal-Marts and on and on.
Up there, I'm the
biggest movie thing
to a lot of people comin' in
from a 40 or 50 mile radius.
We can talk intelligently
about 90 percent
of the movies up there,
and we've probably seen
three percent of 'em.
If you don't know, then you go,
"I hear it's a good movie."
Or... "Yeah, that's a real good,
that's a pretty good movie."
Are you ever honest and say
"I hear it's terrible"?
No, no, no no no no.
That's absolutely a no-no.
And you go, "It's a pretty box,
look at the box."
Well, most of it, you've just
heard people tell you it sucks,
but you don't know it,
'cause I haven't seen it.
Nothin' was more depressing,
to me,
than to wake up
on January first,
and know exactly
what you're gonna make...
I want to at least have
the possibility of makin'...
$50,000 or makin' $10,000.
But at least I don't know.
It's still out there.
This VHS home video system
has every single function
you will ever need.
It was made by JVC,
the people who invented VHS.
A home video system
so advanced,
it's used in more sets
around the world
than any other.
But the best invention
is our cordless
remote control unit,
which puts every function
of the machine itself
into the palm of your hand.
VHS came out and the
rewind button was introduced.
That was pretty much
revolutionary for film-makers,
'cause you could just, easily,
with the press of a button,
just go back
and constantly re-watch
how Tom Savini stuck an arrow
through someone's chest.
You could go back and pause it
and look at it closely.
Also understand and dissect
the structure of editing.
Because usually editing is
designed to be very seamless,
and you couldn't figure out how
shots would be put together
to create a flow, and an effect,
and a gag especially,
or a stunt.
It's really increased
the ability
for people to understand
the language of film.
VHS kind of, I think, taught
a lot of people about
the nature of film,
the nature of editing,
the nature of sound,
and how those things mattered.
Not on purpose,
but on accident, like...
"Oh okay, this tape is
falling apart,
Oh, 'cause it's a physical medium.
Well, why is that?
Oh, because it's just
magnetic oxide stuck to a tape
in a pre-determined pattern.
Oh, okay."
Instead of having stacks of
film books,
we had stacks of VHS tapes.
That's what helped us discover
our love for cinema,
it's what inspired us
to go start shooting
our own movies.
And I remember even
cutting my first films
on two VHS players.
Everyone had a VHS deck
in their house in the 1980's.
That was, I mean,
everyone that I knew did.
So, you record something,
you put it on a VHS tape,
you can share it with everybody.
You could just leave
the camera running...
and you were also aware that
it was easy to record sound.
Um, so that was
really revolutionary.
And for someone who was raised
on home movies on film,
the idea of video
was almost magical,
it felt like this was
too good to be true.
Think about film history
classes. Film 101.
Whatever university you've been
in, whatever high school,
the first films you looked at
were the Lumiere films.
You've got a train
coming into a station,
You've got factory workers
leaving a factory,
and you're feeding a baby.
These are the canonical titles
of early cinema,
that every textbook has.
And they are home movies.
I made my first feature on VHS
when I was 12.
I would dress up my brothers in,
like a gorilla costume,
or we made fake guts
that came out,
or we did a fake
episode of Cops.
It's mostly unwatchable and
it's mostly deeply embarrassing.
# Papa was a rolling stone,
Yes he was #
# He was a rolling sto-one
Before that it seemed like,
well, making a movie
is like this whole
different thing.
There's no way that you
could ever do that.
That's what
people in Hollywood do.
But then, when I figured out,
you can just get a video camera,
and you make this movie,
and you can show it to your friends,
like, the next week,
that was so exciting.
And then I was kinda hooked.
Well, this sucks.
Come on let's go have a party
or something.
Eh, this is dumb, I'm bored.
Waste of time.
But I think it was the fact
that it was so accessible,
it was the fact
that it was universal.
It's like,
"Alright, well let's go skate,
and I'm just gonna bring
the camera with me."
It wasn't, like,
this whole production.
You know, and I think in the
grand scheme of things,
we'll understand that there was
the invention of film,
and that that became domestic
at one point,
but that distinction between
what was 8mm film
and what was home video,
I think was just this weird,
you know, maybe...
20 year blip in our evolution.
I was 10. I saw the movie
when it first came out,
and really was overcome
by just Indiana Jones,
the character himself,
and the world that he inhabited.
You know, being a single kid,
and kinda nerdy, you know,
I wanted to create
worlds for myself.
That was my motivation.
And then getting together with
my friend Eric Zala,
we wanted to recreate
this Raiders film.
And of course, when you have
a passionate idea,
you find the tools to do it.
Eric had more of a drive to see
a shot-for-shot remake
of Raiders in its entirety.
I think for myself,
maybe it was that idea.
But I think for me it was more,
"I just wanna
play Indiana Jones."
We worked from memory
for the first three years.
Video stores weren't as
readily available.
You just couldn't get stuff.
And so you were left
to your own
to go back to the theater
and see the film again.
We bought the script
that was published,
we bought fan magazines.
I snuck a tape recorder
into the movie theater
just to get sound effects,
and ended up getting thrown out.
And then when the film came out
on laserdisc in '84 or '85
we watched it and realized
we were pretty close.
The whole seven year project,
really we just did it
for ourselves.
But there's a nostalgia there
for this generation
of filmmakers
that were teaching themselves
on Betamax.
Something as simple as
setting up your Barbie dolls,
you know, or that could be
something as complicated
as wanting to remake
Raiders of the Lost Ark
in it's entirety
VHS will always have
a historical place
because it was the first way
in which images were circulated
and duplicated,
in a cost-effective way.
There were not
the economic constraints
that were associated with
image-making before.
That's revolutionary.
I remember renting some of
those, sort of, low-rent titles
in the mom and pop video stores.
But then you would get 'em home
and they would have
this look, like
"This doesn't look
like a real movie,
this doesn't look
like a real film.
"Kinda looks like
TV news, or something."
And you'd get, like,
a shot-on-video movie
that would give every appearance
of being a real movie,
but it wouldn't be.
Wake up, bitch!
No... No!
This isn't real!
There's something about, like,
watching something
It makes you feel mo-for me,
like I could-it feels-
there's more of, like a voyeuristic thing,
'cause you associate it
with home movies.
And so then when you see
a movie made on video
you kinda get this feeling like
you're seeing something
that maybe you
weren't supposed to.
Everybody was like, "You know,
you gotta shoot it on film,
what are you doing? You can't
shoot a feature on video."
I'm gonna take my time
with this,
we're gonna treat this
like a movie.
Just the fact that
it's being shot
on Super VHS-C
is gonna be irrelevant.
Sledgehammer... they...
made it on VHS for VHS.
And I-I think,
as far as I know,
it's the first one like that.
And made with a sense of
professionalism, like,
"Maybe this is the new way."
I was here in Ohio doing it and
guys like Tim Ritter
were down in Florida, you know,
doing the same thing,
and he was going door-to-door
to video stores,
But eventually you had guys that
cracked the nut at Blockbuster,
and were getting stuff on
Blockbuster store shelves.
The unprofessional quality of
the shot-on-video movies
to me, is what makes them
beautiful and makes them...
I dunno, it's weird, it's like
they were trashy back then,
but now there's
an artistic quality.
Despite being
an ex-boxer and marine,
The Rock finally succumbed
to the vicious, relentless,
unyielding, resilient,
devil ant!
And have you seen the giant
horny toad monster?
Errr, he'll attack ya,
And the devil ant! Errrrrr!
I make monster comedies,
I've been doin' that since 1990,
and I've been makin'
monster movies ever since.
My plot is I got
a monster out there
and he has to be destroyed!
He has to be stopped!
That's the plot of my movie.
They call Detective Rock
to stop the monster, you know...
Who always doesn't
believe in the monster.
Yeah, Detective Rock.
- Hello.
- Rock.
- Rock
- Hello. Yeah.
- Yeah.
- Hey, what?
Ozzy's dead.
Hey man, I'm tryin' to eat, man.
You know you shouldn't be
interrupt-callin' me this time.
You shouldn't be
interruptin' me, man.
- Ozzy's dead.
- What?
Greg 'Ozzy' Ozumeck is dead?
Yeah, bitten by a devil ant.
- Got bitten by a devil ant?
- Yeah.
Oh c'mon, man, that's an
old wives' tale and you know it.
And it's got a lot
of comedy in there,
and it's got a lot of action,
like monsters battling people.
A lot of victims.
And then at the end of the movie
the monster gets killed,
or he gets stopped, or whatever.
Thrown in jail or somethin'.
This is a person who has...
one day sat down and decided,
"I am going to improve the world
with absolutely no
financial support,
and no critical support
from anybody,
and I'm gonna make
this my life's mission."
He is-he is like a living
embodiment of a middle finger
in the face of everybody
who ever told you
that you cannot do
what you wanna do.
Ladies and gentlemen, please
welcome David "The Rock" Nelson.
- Eeerrrrrr!
- Ah!
Errrr eerrrrr I'm gonna get you
with my devil ant
if you don't watch this movie
by The Rock!
I was a door to door dictionary
salesman from '87 to '91.
So that sorta helped
my sales, you know.
It helped me, it taught me how
to sell to people.
And after that,
after I was let go,
I started sellin' my movies
in '93.
I went door to door with
my monster movies.
I had interviews,
I have an introduction,
so you're getting a full-length
movie, it's like two hours.
Plus you get previews, plus you
get a long intro by me,
flexing my muscles and stuff.
I'm gonna show ya, look!
The Rock's got it! Show 'em!
I drink like four glasses of
milk a day, and I eat good,
I get my protein, you know,
a beef patty maybe with some rice
and maybe some veggies,
or a small salad,
and I... you know, every day
I have a banana or an apple.
You know, get my fiber,
get my fruit.
So, you know,
all natural body-building,
I never took a steroid,
it's all natural, bud.
46, 47, 48, 49,
50, 51, 52!
Ladies and gentlemen!
David "The Rock" Nelson!
Are you jealous of my body?
Are you jealous of my body?
The thing is, I got enough footage
for like 100 movies right now.
I'm always filmin' stuff.
And I film so much stuff that
I forget where everything is.
So, a lot of times I have to
reshoot something if I want it.
It takes too long to
rewind to find that.
So I say,
"I'll just do it over again."
And it turns out pretty good
the second time.
Go ahead and stab the knife
in my chest, Sodom,
go ahead, right in my heart.
Why not?
I got ideas comin' outta
my head, man, I'm 55!
What's wrong with you guys
sayin' you're old,
when you're like my age,
or younger! You're not old!
Don't tell me, "Oh, I'm 48,
I'm gettin' too old fer this."
Man, you're just a kid!
Get motivated!
You know, some of you will say,
"Oh, you gotta do it digitally."
Yeah, digital schmidgital!
I don't need a computer
to make a movie,
I never have!
I just shoot the dang thing.
If you got a video camera,
stick a blank tape in that machine,
and film the dang thing!
Quit makin' excuses,
"Well, I don't have
all this money.
I need a budget so I can buy
all this digital equipment."
Use what ya got!
"Well I didn't go
to film school,
I don't know if my movies
are gonna be good er not."
Don't worry about it!
Just listen to your heart
and you do it!
You take charge
of your own vision!
And don't worry
what other people think!
And don't let your mom talk you
outta makin' monster movies!
I told my mom, I said.
My mom said,
"David I wish you'd grow up,
and do somethin' more
constructive with your time!"
I said, "Mom, you can't stop me
from makin' movies,
because you know
I'm gonna do it anyway!"
The infamous glitch that all
video store owners know.
When you're watching and there's
a glitch, and you're like,
"Oh, it's gonna get nude
in two seconds."
Here's a news flash, nudity was
gigantic with teenage boys.
It was a big thing
back in the 80's.
Watching a video tape as a kid,
when you can
start to see the lines
rolling through the picture
you know that someone's watched
it a lot at that point,
and you know that there's
gonna be tits coming on soon.
You get ready, you sit up
in your chair, 'cause you think,
"Holy shit, some fuckin'
weird pervert
has watched this part
so many times
that I'm ready
for the money shot."
When you watch a VHS tape,
there's almost like a archeology
Where there's history written
into the physical material
of the thing itself.
You get to see the parts that
are really beat up.
You know that someone
rewound that
and watched it over and over.
It's like the part
where there's boobs
or the part where
the guy explodes.
You know that was
someone's favorite part
and they couldn't get enough.
That was the first, I think,
anybody had the power
over being able to see boobs,
again and again and again
and again and again.
Cable had been
a reality in our lives,
so you could see boobs...
but then they were gone.
And they were just
a golden memory.
I had a video tape of
Kentucky Fried Movie
and I lent it to a friend.
And when he gave it back,
it was like,
every 10 minutes or something,
it would just go
And I'd be like, "You watched
all those nude scenes
over and over again
in one weekend!
Because now my tape is ruined.
But it's also kind of funny.
And whenever I watch it, I can
think of you being gross...
and hilarious."
My Ghostbusters tape, I bet
people can't even make out
the whole scene where he goes,
"I came, I saw,
I kicked some ass"
because I thought that was
the greatest shit ever
I rewound that scene,
I was like,
"Whoa, he kicked some ass, that
is what Ghostbusters do."
We had a guy at one of our
video stores that I worked at,
where we eventually had
to cancel his membership
because we figured out
it was him.
But his hobby was renting
children's movies,
and then splicing in pornography
in the middle of them
and returning them to us.
So they'd go back on our
rental shelves.
I have finished planting
We have less than two minutes!
It entertained this guy.
And with VHS
that was a tangible thing
he could do it to.
My friend lent me a tape of a
movie he taped for me recently.
I went all the way
to the end of the tape
just to see how many layers
of things has he taped over
And you kinda catch the tail-end
of a movie from Cinemax
or, like, a music video,
or this TV show,
all the way to the something
that was taped originally
from 1987.
And it was really great
just to see
who this guy-you know,
what he was watching,
for the past 25 years.
Lawrence of Arabia is one of
my favorite films.
And when I go see a print
of that in the theater,
every scratch, every break,
every place you see a splice,
there's a story behind that.
Something happened
with that movie,
something happened
with that print
when it was
shown to an audience.
And there's something about that
that, to me,
'cause you know that print's had
some life and some legs on it.
VHS could do that.
It's almost like VHS has a
built-in hit counter.
In that, like, you can tell how
many times it's been copied
by the way that it looks.
And so, you knew that when you
got a tape,
if you were in tape trading,
like, the shittier it looked
and the worse it sounded,
you just knew it was
gonna be gold
because that meant that
10 people before you
had copied it, and thought that
it was funny enough,
or great enough, or weird
enough, to make a copy
and then pass it to their friends,
who thought the same thing.
So it was like this vetting
process, you know, where...
Uh, this distillery of images,
or something.
So that by the time you got it,
it was like, potent
and, you know,
gonna get you high.
Priest is bad, man.
Priest is number one
in heavy metal, man.
And then who comes next?
Iron Maiden, man.
What would you say
if you saw Rob Halford
right now?
I'd jump his bones!
What do you think, uh-
What do you like about him?
He's great, man, he
sings great. Group's great.
How 'bout Dokken?
Great. Excellent.
Are you fucked up?
The Southpark
Christmas Special,
I never had a copy of that
and somebody I knew had it
and they were like,
"Really? You don't have a copy?
That's crazy.
Everybody has a copy of this."
And so I was like,
"Well, make me a copy.
You know, just, come on, if
everybody has it, give me one."
I remember the guy being like,
"Well, what do you have for me?"
And that was the first moment
where I was like,
"Oh... That's right,
tape trading."
The Winnebago concepts
and engineering departments
have developed a
multi-functional bathroom
privacy I don't even know
what the fuck I'm reading.
I wonder what the fuck
the real dialogue is.
What the fuck is this thing?
Oh, the windshield
for fuck's sake.
I gave that guy a collection
I had gotten from somebody else,
that had Winnebago Man on it.
That had Larry Williams,
it had Jesco,
It had the Jackass pilot,
The best of the worst of
Star Search,
which was really awesome.
And I got the
Southpark Christmas Special.
- Dude!
- What?
Don't put the magic hat
on the snowman.
'Cause if you do he's gonna
come to life.
No it's not cool!
My sister in Minnesota
put a hat on a snowman
and it tried to kill her!
- Fuck him, let's do it anyway.
- Yeah.
I decided to get
in this business.
One, it was economics,
I didn't have really a job,
I was working
at a porno theater,
I'd just had a son.
What am I gonna do with my life?
So the very first thing I did
was the obvious.
I took out a little ad,
30 titles.
Mexican horror titles
and some other obscurities.
I ran that ad
for a couple months.
The first week I got,
like $500 in the mail,
I was like, "Oh my god."
Make my copies, send 'em out.
And then the next week $1000,
the next week,
"Oh my god, this is insane."
So I-I quit my job...
and I started
being a bootlegger.
You'd read someone's ad in a
magazine and you'd respond,
and you would write down what
you had and what he had,
and you would trade.
And you'd make a copy
and it was usually bad,
four or five generations later,
but you'd still get to see
the movie you wanted.
And what started happening,
as I started to get into
more and more
extreme type of films,
is things would be
taken by customs.
It was really funny because
they've got this checklist,
and it said, "Your product has
been seized by Canada customs."
And I remember twice,
I ordered tapes that got
seized at the border.
And one of them was
The "necrophilia" box was
If you were ordering a movie
that was banned or prohibited,
you'd have the guy tape, like,
an episode of All in the Family
for like the first
five or ten minutes.
Of course, you're not gonna
have the tape labeled
Degradation of the Shit
Eaters, Volume 6,
He's gonna put, you know,
"All in the Family Reruns,"
or something like that.
That was a pretty solid trick.
To me, it wasn't offensive
in any way
because these films were
impossible to find.
And what they were doing was
helping spread these movies
and getting them out to people
to actually see them.
I think that's why in the
DVD market, in the beginning,
you were seeing large units
of things move,
because they could go to
a convention like this,
and say, "Oh, okay, those guys
were moving that many bootlegs,
or that many trades
amongst them.
It's a safe bet to put out a
nice remastered copy."
But I think it was
an important time,
and a lot of movies were
discovered by trading.
And in the case, specifically of
Dead Next Door,
there was such a long
window of time,
from the time it was made to the
time it actually came out,
that it was bootlegged a lot.
But it benefitted the movie
because everybody
found out about it that way.
We didn't have to go out and do
a bunch of publicity,
the publicity came to us.
It's kinda funny, you know, I'm
dealing with these companies...
I think they know,
maybe they don't,
but I feel kinda g-you know,
I maybe bootlegged
some of their stuff in the past,
and now I'm dealing with them
on a professional level,
playing their movies
in the theater,
but... these guys all know.
I mean, any guy that's gonna be
hypocritical and say, you know,
well the first time you saw
Cannibal Holocaust
was via a pirated tape.
And talk about
cruelty to animals,
McDonald's has to be
on top of the list.
I mean, when you think about
those poor little McChickens
walking around without their
I think the appeal of
this type of material
that VHS definitely encouraged
and helped spread,
these viral videos,
are that they capture
something authentic
that wasn't meant
to be captured.
We finally go to the point,
I think in the last five years,
where just everything
truly is ours now.
Where, when you put something
out there, I'm sorry,
it's just-it's not yours
anymore. It's everyone's.
Before, you would have-
and in a way it was patriarchal,
and it was problematic,
'cause you would have to wait
for someone else
to approve of what you were
saying and presenting,
and have to go through
that whole dance.
But, in that there was a pre
selection process,
so that, by the time something
got to the screen,
you knew that someone thought
that it was worth something.
You look at YouTube and you're
like, "I love cat videos."
I could spend a good portion of-
and perhaps I do
spend a good portion of my day
watching cat videos.
Cat videos have
always been important.
If you look at what people were
shooting on film for home movies
in the 50's and 60's,
they were filming their cats.
But I think the incredible
pressure now is to understand
what it is you need to watch.
And the orthodoxy
comes really from
what other people are
clicking into.
And then the question is,
"Well, how do they find that?
And how is that discovered?
Duane, I was wondering, what
fashion trends do you follow?
Well I usually look
in magazines or...
see what the kids
at school are wearing.
Already you can see
a remix culture
appropriating different clips
to do different things with it
besides just what the producers
in a centralized industry,
such as Hollywood,
or the New York television
networks do with it.
I don't watch stuff that I hate
and then put it on there,
which I think a lot of people think,
for Everything is Terrible!
They think, "Oh, it sucks so
you gotta put it up there."
It's like, no, I don't wanna
put anything up
unless it's incredible.
- Crack cocaine.
- Coke!
And this is
what you smoke it in.
It's awesome!
Makes you feel good all over.
Yes, some of the stuff we do
doesn't show people in
the best light ever.
But... they did produce
that stuff to begin with,
we're just spitting it back out.
- I'm Fabio.
- I'm Micky Dolenz.
- I'm Al Michaels.
- I'm retarded.
Hey Toby, you da man.
Oh, Mr. White, I'm just a tire.
There's so much
undiscovered stuff still.
How can we share that
with everybody?
Let's just organize this
as best we can,
because that's really all it is,
is just kind of taking control
over those tapes.
- Whoo!
- That's right, little buddy.
- Get away!
- Oh my god!
So it's fascinating that
these technologies,
you know, leapfrog each other,
building new uses.
And none of this is driven by
people really anticipating what
the new use will be.
It's almost like you have to
build a machine
and then see
what people do with it.
There's really no need
for archaic things
like cable anymore.
Stuff like that. It's like,
"Why would you do that,
when you can literally watch
whatever you want at any time."
I guess there are people
that are collectors,
and put things on their shelves,
and it reflects who they are,
and I think that that's a loss.
But I, um,
I think that there'll be
virtual ways for us to collect,
and we're gonna figure that out.
I'm sure studios
are really excited
about the way things are going,
about the fact that there's not
going to be physical media.
I mean, the Walt Disney
corporation, you know,
is made up of lovely people,
but that whole idea of
The Disney Vault,
"We're putting The Lion King
back in the Disney Video Vault
so you can't buy it again
for a while."
It's a completely artificial
sense of scarcity,
designed to create a completely
artificial sense of demand.
Studios are now
completely dominating
what is available to you.
And they are completely in
control of what you can have.
And they can give that to you
and they can take that away,
like a malevolent god.
It infuriates me. The notion of
somebody else having control
over my access to media in
general bothers me.
When I read the story
about the Kindle
and how all the people who
had purchased,
it couldn't have been
a more ironic title,
George Orwell's 1984,
woke up one morning, because of
a licensing disagreement,
it was gone. It just wasn't
on their Kindle anymore.
That's terrifying.
That is absolutely not
in the spirit of
purchasing something.
That word becomes
meaningless at that point.
You don't purchase
digital media. You rent it.
And it's at their pleasure.
The reality is all physical
media is going away. All of it.
On a business standpoint, if it
takes off, it'll be good for us,
because we won't
have manufacturing.
We won't have to do all those
extras and the supplements,
and the interviews,
and the documentaries
and the paper labeling,
and the shipping.
So you think about it, and it
sounds like a great idea.
But then, it kinda goes against
what I like.
And, you know, collecting.
With Netflix, with torrenting,
it's hard to want to go out
to a video store.
Like its hard
for me at this point.
I don't really go to the video store
as much as I'd like to anymore.
This is where we keep
most of our video tapes.
Sadly, I had to, the other day,
move them all
to make room for Blu-Ray...
boo ray.
If DVD was a short lifespan,
Blu-Ray's gonna be, like,
gone before you know it.
Honestly the primary reason
to keep something physical
is nostalgia.
We'll continue to put out
physical media
until the plants close.
My 18, 19 year old students,
who love film,
are passionate about film,
seem to have no interest
in having a video collection.
You can't begrudge
this generation
not wanting to collect this,
because it's too accessible.
It seems to be splitting
down the middle,
to people who are going to go
to the ends of the earth
to keep the old stuff,
the old ways.
And then it's the other side
that are just-
they don't want
anything anymore.
It's gotta be non-physical media
that they can keep
on a hard drive
or just have it streamed to 'em
and forget about it.
And then the other guys that are
going to build a shrine.
I have more than enough to keep
me busy for 10,000 lifetimes.
Um, for future generations,
I don't give a fuck
about those people.
I love streaming
as a technology...
I'm gonna hang on to my DVDs,
I'm gonna hang on to
my Blu-Rays.
Just as as much as I love
iTunes and Spotify,
I still have a record player,
because I like it.
People stopped buying video
as soon as the content
was cheaper
and even easier to consume.
And then we found out that
the masses don't care
about bonus features
or optimum quality.
It's only the collector market
that does.
Netflix Instant is a
really important step
towards what the studios want.
And I think what you'll
eventually do is
you'll have a pipe
that comes into your house,
and you will subscribe to
whichever libraries you want.
The MGM library,
the Warner Brothers library,
the Sony library.
That's where we're headed,
we're headed towards...
no money on their end,
in terms of physical units.
I mean, I imagine it's just all
gonna be on access eventually.
Well technically, it already is,
but people some people
don't wanna admit it.
We're talking about VHS, but I
only have video tapes
because that's the way that
I can find that movie.
And if that came out
in a different manner,
like, if that was available on a
DVD, or only on Blu-Ray,
I'd watch it.
I mean now that I'm a
film programmer,
I'm more aware there's films
where the filmmaker doesn't have
any other materials.
So essentially, until somebody
finds a negative, finds a print,
the best source in the world
is a VHS.
Which is a little scary.
Video preservation is the
nightmare in the closet
that no one is talking about.
Everybody likes to talk about
film preservation.
Martin Scorsese is out there,
you know,
proclaiming the love of film
and all this,
but in actual fact,
everybody knows that in
Scorsese's back closet
he's got a lot of videos
that are just a hot mess.
I think that most people
that really started collecting
in the 80's
are probably going to see,
at least,
two out of ten tapes begin now,
30 years on, 20 years on,
to really not be playable.
And maybe that's one of the
that nostalgia for video is
going to be so
incredibly poignant,
I think, going forward,
is that we're gonna have such a
great, great statistic of loss.
It seems like
with each iteration
in home video technology
we lose a chunk of the library
of amazing films
that are out there.
I don't understand
how people can ignore VHS
because there's such a huge,
huge percentage of movies
that never came out
any other way.
So if you're even, like,
a casual fan of movies at all,
you should have a VCR.
You should be actively
watching stuff on VHS.
There are hundreds of
thousands of thousands of movies
that never made the jump to DVD.
Think that the fact that
it never jumped to DVD
that they were poor quality
to begin with.
No matter what genre of
film you're interested in,
you're going to find things
that are only on VHS
within that realm of interest.
So if you like silent film,
there's gonna be some
obscure Russian short
that's only on some tape on
a back shelf of a video store.
If you like 80's comedies,
there's gonna be
hundreds and hundreds
of just the most ridiculous
boner jams
that you can only watch on tape.
To select what you love
by it's format...
cuts you off from something that
you might enjoy...
more than anything you've ever
seen in your entire life.
I think that stuff is the-
stands outside of my objections.
That's very important
that there is a document
of all those countless hours
of rare stuff.
In any form whatsoever...
even VHS.
When it struck us that
other people could have fun
watching movies
that were only on video,
we started Video Hate Squad.
And we had our first show,
and we got the
whole audience there,
we have a VCR on the stage
so we always put the tape in the
VCR in front of the audience
so they're all
part of that moment.
Even better than that,
is that all over the world,
there's other people
that did the same thing
at the same time,
'cause there's this kind of
a zeitgeist
where people are realizing,
"Hey, there's a lot of value
in this stuff
that we've been ignoring."
I mean, for example,
a movie like Deadly Prey.
I don't think anyone ever knew
it even came out.
It was meant to be this
fleeting thing.
Let's just fill these stores
with content.
We don't have to worry about
if there's theatrical releases or not.
What they didn't realize
is that there were
so many works of art.
That's an incredible, incredible
film, and we played a VHS copy,
'cause it's not available
on film or DVD or anything.
No other format.
We had Ted Prior come
and we had a talk with him,
and it was just incredible
to see this movie
with a bunch of people,
and just realize no one knows
what's gonna happen next,
this is completely
I knew that VHS collecting was
kind of becoming popular again,
The House of the Devil, you
gotta give a lot of due to that,
just the fact that a new movie
was released on VHS,
it started making me think about
a lot other films like this.
You know I had a modest
VHS collection,
but this kinda kick started it
for me a lot.
"Okay, well, there's people
who have this kind of interest,
so let's market
to them as well."
The revolution
is still evolving.
Um, I think, I mean
you're making a documentary
about video tapes right now.
I think that there's a huge
VHS resurgence.
For example Mondo putting out
all these new video tapes,
that are selling
through hundreds of copies
in a two hour period.
Clearly there's still a market
out there for video tapes.
The boom that's going on today
with the tapes,
I'm going on 40 now,
I'm seeing these tape prices,
going for $400.
It makes me regret getting rid
of some of the stuff
that I had at one time,
you know.
I could be putting my kids
through college, I don't know.
When LP's had a resurgence
in the 90's,
what was amazing about that is
that it didn't go away.
Like, there's still stores
that really
just exist to sell records.
But, I don't think that VHS
is going to have
that same permanent resurgence.
We can make arguments for
the quality of a vinyl
and why that presents a
better experience of the music.
But VHS, it's never going to be
a better experience
of the raw materials,
it's just...
the qualities associated
around it.
I think that there's a nostalgic
need to sort of go back
and also re-evaluate.
It was in 2006
when History of Violence
came out on VHS
and kind of marked
the end of everything.
That was the last widely
distributed film on VHS.
My friend Zack called me
and was like,
"Hey, we're thinking about
getting some VHS tattoos,
'cause they just
stopped making VHS."
And I'd never
had a tattoo before
but it took me less than
two seconds to be like,
"Yep, I'm with you guys.
I'm gettin' that right there."
And we all got ours
a little differently,
like some got, like
"never forget" on it,
some got the year
that it started and ended.
I just wanted just
the video on it's own,
just like the cold-just the nice-
It looks so strong and great.
And people ask me all the time,
they'll be like,
"What is that on your arm?"
I'll just show it to them
and they'll be like,
and I'm like,
"You forgot, obviously"
When you find
some of these stores
that have big box video tapes,
you know they're gonna be
mutant owners
who have been surrounded by
these relics for so many years.
And they are part of
their life story
and I am slowly trying
to drain them of them.
And like an archeologist
every once in a while
you'd pull all these tapes out
and at the very bottom,
covered in dust,
I mean literally,
your hands would be just
caked in this dust,
you pull out a video
that's pure gold.
If I see a flea market,
a swap meet,
an antique store, a Goodwill,
It's getting stopped
and it's getting pillaged.
That entails looking
in the phone book,
looking on the internet.
Literally driving up and down
every single street that I see.
I've driven probably
a three hour drive radius
every direction.
And honestly I think
that is what the legacy
of the VHS era is,
it's made us all
much more film savvy.
It's kind of made people
much more aware of...
other movies
beyond the ones that were
fed by the richest companies.
The fact that it
made accessible,
all these generations of films
which were utterly gone.
I mean just gone.
No one could see them.
You know the studios
kept them in the vaults,
sometimes they
got rid of the negatives,
didn't think
it mattered anymore.
You know, home video restored
all that for us, you know,
and perhaps not always in the
greatest looking form.
I mean perhaps not always
the way we remembered it,
but it was accessible.
I don't think there's
any lasting impact.
I think it's been just
a passing parade.
It's like, what's the
lasting impact of radio?
Right?.. Eh...
You know, it got us to the
next step, the next step...
These are not
just entertainment,
and they're also indications of
what life was like, and is like,
and is possibly
going to be like again.
These movies, by being, in a way
the record of our dreams,
are a way to look at our culture
and say, "Ahhh...
that's why that civilization
ate itself spectacularly.
That's why it all
fell apart. Hmm."
Or, "That's what it
could have been,
that's where the dream
could have gone."
When you look at a tape,
and it has the "be kind,
rewind" sticker, on it,
there's something deeply
moving about that.
It's such a call to arms,
and a suggestion or an imperative
about a way to live your life.
To be kind and rewind.
Go back and like,
hang on to these things
that are important to you,
and not let them disappear,
and not let other people
take them a way from you.
But find what's important
and preserve that
and help it to endure.