The convenience of Netflix and other online streaming destinations is indisputable: Who doesn't want to watch older movies whenever they desire? Without having to trek out to the local video store and keep fingers crossed in hopes that the DVD in question is even in stock, for that matter.
But there's a distinct sadness that sinks in anytime longtime cinema buffs click that "Watch Now" option. Whenever a new instantly streaming film begins, the purest of movie buffs gets that much further removed from the golden days when trips to video shops offered endless discovery. And we're not talking four or five years ago, either.
Back in the 1980s, and into the '90s, mom-and-pop video stores offered a surplus of fringe flicks packaged with wonderfully showy, shamelessly tasteless artwork. The VHS era held a certain kind of anything-goes magic, giving adventurous movie heads the chance to see crazily illustrated box covers, as opposed to the modern-day practice of simply showing the bigger cast member's faces beneath the film's title.
Thanks to Friday's limited theatrical release of the new horror anthology V/H/S, which uses the dated video format as a catalyst for inventive found-footage segments directed by the genre's hottest up-and-comers, nostalgia for the vintage approach to home entertainment is in full swing around these parts.
The result: the following gallery of The 50 Craziest Old-School Horror VHS Box Covers. Just imagine the excitement and curiosity genre fans felt when casually seeing any one of these in rental venues back in the day. It's enough to make you pine for the days when you let the tape rock 'til the tape popped.
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Compiled by Matt Barone (@MBarone)