Old formats

November 27, 2020
Inside the city's last video rental store

Words: Johnny von Einem

Pictures: Tyrone Ormsby

In 1995, tape was everything.

Cars had cassette players, homes had VHS, and Galactic DVD on Gawler place traded as Galactic Video.

A well-loved movie watched again and again would warp with age, the soft plastic cover of its case stretching a little more each time it was pulled open for a Friday night movie night or rainy weekend in.

The medium has moved on, a couple of times now, but there’s been no suitable replacement for the video rental shop.

Downstairs at Galactic, owner Stephen Vincent has steered the business from specialising in horror, sci-fi and Japanese animation, to broadening his range but now specialising in nostalgia.

Here you can sift through a plastic gallery of our contemporary culture and take a recommendation from a human rather than an algorithm.

Over 25 years, Stephen’s customers became regulars, regulars became friends.

The video shop was always more than the stock on its shelves; it’s movie-lovers’ communion.

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