Video stores all over the world aren't just dying—they're pretty much dead.
Meanwhile, Movie Madness is now serving its signature pale ale inside a new screening room.
The Belmont rental store, which has more titles in its collection than Hulu, Netflix and Amazon combined, plus a mini film memorabilia museum, nearly went extinct itself in 2017, when founder Mike Clark announced his retirement. Instead, Hollywood Theatre crowdfunded enough money to buy the store. More than enough, in fact—the campaign exceeded its $250,000 Kickstarter goal in a matter of days.
With the extra money that Hollywood raised, Movie Madness was able to open a free screening room this year—a cozy, 18-seat "miniplex" complete with black pleather armchairs, where you can sip wine and beer from concessions. It'd feel like your own TV room if not for the large screen, high-end sound system and laser projection.
Ostensibly, it opened to hold screenings too niche for a bigger theater. But while there are plenty of obscure movie gems each week, the selection appeals to a broader audience than hardcore film nerds.
Due to licensing restrictions, Movie Madness only shares the titles via a weekly email and an in-store bulletin. But the first few weeks alone have hosted everything from populist classics and crowd-pleasing musicals to campy monster flicks and auteur masterpieces. And it's hard to imagine even the film-bro-phobic not being charmed charmed by the Saturday morning cartoon screenings, where there's even a bring-your-own-milk cereal bar.