Video Store

I Lost It At The Video Store

A Filmmakers’ Oral History of a Vanished Era

by Tom Roston

For a generation, video stores were to filmmakers what bookstores were to writers. They were the salons where many of today’s best directors first learned their craft. The art of discovery that video stores encouraged though the careful curation of clerks was the fertile, if sometimes fetid, soil from which today’s film world sprung.

Video stores were also one of the last vestiges of media’s analog world. We are now at the whim of online distributors like Netflix, iTunes, and Amazon. Convenience has trumped curation. It’s time to look at what’s lost. And to come to terms with the world we live in.

In I Lost It at the Video Store, Tom Roston interviews the filmmakers who came of age in the era of video rentals, and constructs a living, personal history of an era of cinema history which, though now gone, continues to shape film culture today.

Coming September 2015

Tom Roston was a senior editor at Premiere magazine and has written for The New York Times, New York, Spin, Elle, The Los Angeles Times, and The Hollywood Reporter, among other publications. In addition to freelance work, he writes a weekly blog about documentaries for PBS’ award-winning POV website. He lives in Brooklyn.