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Published:November 10th, 2013 11:36 EST

Blockbuster To Close All US Stores! An Era Has Ended! If Only We Could Rewind History!

By Robert Paul Reyes


Blockbuster was founded in 1985, and in a very short time its blue ticket logo became as ubiquitous as McDonald`s golden arches. According to Wikipedia at its peak in 2004, Blockbuster had up to 60,000 employees and more than 9,000 stores.


Blockbuster LLC announced this week that it will close its approximately 300 remaining stores, as well as its distribution centers.

This announcement came as a surprise to most people who assumed that Blockbuster had gone out of business a long time ago. The two Blockbusters stores in my small city closed at least seven years ago. Children are probably asking their parents: What`s a Blockbuster?

When Blockbuster barreled into our lives in the halcyon 1980`s VHS was cutting-edge technology, and a young dude could score points with his girlfriend by exclaiming: Let`s go to Blockbuster and rent a couple videos.

At its best watching movies is a communal experience, you gather in a dark movie theatre with strangers and you share a wide spectrum of emotions. Even though you can`t see the crowd in the theatre, you laugh and cry as one, and you leave the theatre feeling like you are part of a community.

Going to a Blockbuster store was also a communal experience, you interacted with your fellow customers and you asked them if the video you were holding in your hand was worth renting.

In its early years Blockbuster sold few videos, they made the bulk of their money from renting movies. Most of us abided by Blockbuster`s mantra: Be kind, rewind. The videos belonged to Blockbuster and by extension to the community, as so we heeded Blockbuster`s Golden Rule.

I have always loved movies and entering a Blockbuster store was like walking into a cathedral. Instead of icons and votive candles there were shelves and shelves of VHS cassettes with gaudy covers and enticing titles. I may not be able to judge a book by its cover, but looking at the cover of a video gave me a good indication if I would like the movie.

Renting movies isn`t in the lexicon of today`s generation, now it`s all about streaming content, video on demand, and digital downloading.

Hey kids, I hope you are enjoying watching a recent release on your tiny iPhone screen, you missed out on the golden generation of renting movies on Blockbuster.

If only we could rewind history!

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