Movie Rental Store:
Los Angeles's Best Film Store
You know with the drill: The once-ubiquitous video store has gone the way of the woolly mammoth, a casualty of the streaming revolution, which siphoned away consumers with its instant gratification, its push recommendations, its zero late fees.
It’s the end of the road for Video Journeys | The Eastsider LA
The Eastsider publishes stories from Echo Park and the northeast corner of the City of Los Angeles and neighboring East Los Angeles.
A Sad Day today, “The Store” is closing.
For the past 6 years I’ve had the privilege of Working, Playing Ukulele and Yakin’ at one of the most AWESOME FAMILY OWNED STORES in the WORLD!!!! Meeting some of the GREATEST HUMAN BEINGS you could IMAGINE! True Artists with such Heart and Wit that it made me believe in Humanity again.
It was a place that the COMMUNITY came to meet, talk, hang-out, chill out and pop-out of the “RUSH-TENSION-OVERWHELMED” HABITS that have become the every day LIFE-PATTERNS for most of us. Just to relax, refocus and enjoy Art for a while and chat. Thanks to the wonderful, inspiring people I’ve met there; I’ve come to Love CINEMA as one of the most beautiful Art Expressions of Humanity. It’s Storytelling that’s told through the Magic of Light!
VIDEO JOURNEYS! Same Family. Over 30 YEARS at the same location; in the Historic Building where the Original Walt Disney Studio was located from the 20’s to the early 40’s, a block down is the “Snow White Cottages” where, I hear, the Artists and Writers stayed.
“VIDEO JOURNEYS” was LOS ANGELES’S “CITY LIGHTS BOOKSTORE” of Cinema.
A “Cinema Museum” dedicated to the ART of FILM
Over 20,000 titles of the Greatest Films created around the world, UNITED TOGETHER in ONE PLACE for the people…the “everyday” Jane and Joe! Movies that you can’t Stream or find any other way. There were Important Movies at this store that you could borrow for $3.50 for 5 days, the only other option you’d have to be able to see it would be to buy it from someone for $300! (Talk about “Art” being exclusively for the 1%.)
I remember one day, one of my favorite Actors Robert Forster came in (if you’re reading this Robert Forster I hope you don’t mind me telling this story. I thank you for your work as an actor because you never quit the search to be authentic and deeply true as an artist so you can K.O. each scene you’re in! Just like when you Cold Cocked that kid in “The Descendents”! Nice left-hook by the way!). Mr. Forster walked in the Store and Gently took the place in for a few minutes. Wandered down the “Classics” Area where we had the ENTIRE COLLECTIONS of Hitchcock, Betty Davis, Cary Grant, Fred Astaire, Audrey Hepburn, Godzilla, Tarzan, Joan Crawford, Thin Man, Silent Film, Hepburn and Tracy, Sidney Poitier, etc, etc, etc…and etc.)…. Then he came up to the Counter and said “This…this…. THIS STORE is AMAZING!!! This is an ARCHIVE of CINEMA…a TREASURE HOUSE OF FILM! Thank you for being here!”. He rented some cool films and was looking for a good pizza place, then left. A minute later he came running back up the stairs and said “Hey guys, let me buy you a Pizza, I want to thank you for being here! Let me buy you a Pizza!”….. Amazing guy!
VIDEO JOURNEYS has “Fought the Good Fight”… the Preservation and Availability of Art for everyone for over 30 YEARS.
When Winston Churchill was asked to cut the Funding of the Arts to support the war effort, with great concern he replied, “THEN WHAT ARE WE FIGHTING FOR?”
If this was a FRANK CAPRA film right now, Jimmy Stewart or Gary Cooper would be saying something so wonderful that the store would be saved because of how important it is and how it has served the community….
But it’s too late for that.
When I came in this morning, I was so sad to see the store being picked apart … but then I became HAPPY because if this UNITED TREASURY of FILM is to be separated and split apart… then it couldn’t be given to a better group of humanity! I know each person who is taking a part of the store will TREASURE it. In fact, someone came up to me and said “This film is Precious! I Promise you, I will make sure to show or lend this out to as many people as I can so it’s not lost”. In my best Sir Ian McKellen as Gandalf voice I said “You're the Guardian of this now!”
THANKS TO THIS AWESOME COMMUNITY WHO HAS SUPPORTED THE STORE ALL THESE YEARS!
AND THANKS TO ALL THE STAFF WHO HAVE MADE SO MANY SACRIFICES TO KEEP THE STORE GOING! AND THANKS TO THE OWNER HAYLEY!!!! To The "Holy Knights of Cinema", it has been my Honor to protect and serve with you all!
Lot's of Love,
The Tale of the Princess Kaguya
based on one of Japan’s Most Famous Folktales “The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter” a uniquely Hand-Drawn incredibly beautiful film about a mysterious miniature baby princess found inside a bamboo stalk.
Studio Ghibli’s cofounder Isao Takahata (Grave of the Fireflies, Pom Poko) directed and co-wrote this film. Studio Ghibli has given us some of the most beautifully animated films in Cinema. Films that somehow universally capture the magic of the world from a childhood perspective like; Grave of the Fireflies, My Neighbor Totoro, Kiki’s Delivery Service, Whisper of the Heart, Princess Mononoke, My Neighbors the Yamadas, Spirited Away, The Cat Returns, Howl’s Moving Castle, Ponyo….
With so many Oscar winning movies NOW on DVD like Birdman, Theory of Everything, Whiplash, Boyhood, Ida, Foxcatcher, Gone Girl, The Judge, Big Hero Six, The Grand Budapest Hotel, The Tale of the Princess Kaguya (Studio Ghibli - Miyazaki), Boxtrolls, How to train Your Dragon 2, Maleficent, Guardians of the Galaxy....etc.
There was one little Film that slipped by somewhat unnoticed, that "the people" keep renting and bringing back with a quirky smile on their faces.... I finally watched it after being told by many that "I would love it"....and I Loved it! It pulled at my eccentric-heart-strings... plus I loved the songs (but I also like Yoko Ono songs... and I don't care what anyone says, she is an awesome artist!)
PLUS Michael Fassbender... Anybody who can ACT through a Paper Mache head and make me FEEL for him, is an AWESOME ACTOR!!!!!!!!
Here he is in a little interview on the movie "FRANK"
Michael Fassbender chats to Absolute Radio's Sarah Champion about his new movie 'Frank' - and what it's like acting inside a giant head... Michael also stars...
I went “WILDCARD” last night and ventured into unfamiliar Cinema Seas… our “ESTHER WILLIAMS” Section! ! Esther Williams (1921 - 2013) ‘Hollywood’s Mermaid’! I watched 1944's “Bathing Beauty” with Red Skelton, Basil Rathbone (one of the original and most awesome of Sherlock Holmes), and even Harry James and His Music Makers and Xavier Cugat and his Orchestra were in it!
This was M-G-M’s first “WATER MUSICAL EXTRAVAGANZA”! Which meant that everyone was trying to figure out how to film a water musical! There’s a Special Feature that’s really good, an interview with Esther Williams where she talks about her life and career. What an amazingly dynamic, strong and independent woman she was! I think she would have won Olympic Gold if World War II hadn’t cancelled the games. She even stood up to and commanded respect from the “Roaring” Lion of M.G.M. Lion Louis B. Mayer! But my favorite is her telling this GREAT story of when she worked with Busby Burkeley and she said “God I loved him but he was still an alcoholic and he would call me at 2:30 in the morning! I’d ask him “Busby… are you drinking?” and he responded, “Of COURSE I’m drinking! I’m in the bathtub drinking martini’s and going over this choreography!!!”! She said he always loved to take baths and drink martini’s! Water Inspires!
As the NEW YEAR begins ....... I AM THANKFUL FOR "OLD-SCHOOL ARTIST'S TALENT"! Who through Daily Sweaty Practice... made it seem EFFORTLESS_I am watching "SILK STOCKINGS" Fred Astaire and Cyd Charisse.... COME ON!!!!! How CRAZY TALENTED are these people!??!?!?!?! Since I've never been the "Athletically Co-ordinated and Lead" type, I have always ADMIRED and been THANKFUL for the ARTISTS who DANCE POETIC MOVEMENT through their bodies.... Buster Keaton, Jacque Tati, Chaplin, Cyd Charisse, Harold Lloyd, Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, Mitzi Gaynor, Fred Astaire, Michelle Yeoh, Donald O'Connor, Moon Lee, Douglas Fairbanks, Zhang Ziyi, Bob Fosse, young Cary Grant, some of Christopher Walken's soft shoe moves, the little remembered brilliant Tommy Roll..... To the Kings and Queens of "Human Movement", I admire and I am so THANKFUL for your ARTISTIC EXPRESSIONS ... thank you for helping me believe I can Feel LIBERATION and Move with FREEDOM!
From Silk Stockings (1957)
The past week I watched “Roman Holiday”, “Funny Face”, “Sabrina”, “The Nun’s Story” and “How to Steal a Million” (that had a A&E Documentary as an Extra Feature) ….. I THINK I HAVE A CRUSH ON AUDREY HEPBURN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! …. Again!
- Confessions behind the counter - Bret
“The beauty of a woman is not in the clothes she wears, the figure that she carries, or the way she combs her hair. The beauty of a woman is seen in her eyes, because that is the doorway to her heart, the place where love resides. True beauty in a woman is reflected in her soul. It's the caring that she lovingly gives, the passion that she shows & the beauty of a woman only grows with passing years.” – Audrey Hepburn
Our family at Video Journeys Wishing all of us to remember how much we love to laugh in this New Year of 2015!
Mary Poppins is a 1964 American musical fantasy film directed by Robert Stevenson and produced by Walt Disney, with songs written and composed by the Sherman...
Happy holidays from Video Journeys! Thank you Paul, Nancy and Brett for some fun, holiday music!
If you're going to spend money then this is a great idea to give back to your community.
H/T ANNA KOSTANIAN ART
Just found out that we're fortunate to have this awesome video store in the neighborhood! Thanks, Alan, for signing us up for our first two rentals.
Video stores carve out a niche the Internet can't reach
Leland Bankowski watches only documentaries these days. "Narrative filmmakers don't have a style; the movies are plot-heavy and they don't use filmic language," Bankowski told me earlier this week...
Video Journeys's cover photo
2730 Griffith Park Blvd
Los Angeles, CA
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