As you walk down the aisle, dozens of movies, TV shows and games are carefully displayed. You make your way through another aisle, then another, all the while hoping you’ll find it. After scanning row after row, you see it: the movie you’ve been hoping to watch for weeks. There’s only one copy left and it’s all yours — for a few nights, that is.
It’s no secret that the days of “be kind, rewind” are long over for many cities and towns that once were home to beloved video rental stores. But step into downtown Astoria’s Video Horizons and you may just forget the thousands of lost Hollywood Video and Blockbuster locations.
Video Horizons has been an Astoria staple for nearly 40 years. Though it has adapted to the times, visiting the store still feels like a nostalgic trip. It’s even outfitted with bright paint, old-timey posters and vintage goods.
Neal Cummings first opened Video Horizons in 1984 with around 600 VHS tapes. Since then, his collection of movies has grown to more than 35,000. Over the years, Cummings has run the store on both Astor Street and Marine Drive. Most recently, he moved the store to Duane Street in 2020 after difficulties operating due to the coronavirus pandemic.