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Curated collection of VHS rentals provides little-seen cultural artifacts

A couple of Saskatoon movie buffs are reaching into their personal collections in hopes of reviving a staple of the last century – the VHS movie rental.

Jon Vaughn and Tyler Baptist estimate they have a collection of about 2,000 VHS tapes.

Their taste runs to science fiction and action, and includes such obscurities as 1985's Annihilators.

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Vaughn and Baptist say they've been lending out their movies to friends for years and thought they should just start renting them.

Their store, dubbed Videonomicon, will operate out of Beaumont Records.

They admit their collection is outside the usual stuff that can be found on DVDs or Netflix, but they say they'd hate to see their underground favourites lost forever.

"We just have 50 rentals at a time, but the stock completely will change over every two months," said Baptist. "So it is completely recycling."

For Vaughn, choosing which movies to offer is like being a curator at an art gallery.

"They are kind of cultural artifacts in themselves now," he said.

"These films don't deserve to be lost," added Baptist. "We are trying to keep these films alive … they still deserve to be seen."

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And in case your own machine was taken to the recycling depot a decade ago, the store will also rent VCRs to play the tapes.

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