The Day the Movies Died
Movie lovers, I’ve got some sad news to deliver. Burning Paradise Video, Albuquerque’s only source for independent, foreign and cult cinema on DVD, is closing its doors. Over the years, Albuquerque has witnessed the demise of many beloved video rental stores like Wavy Brain and Alphaville ... plus all those boring mainstream chains like Blockbuster. Losing Burning Paradise after so many years is a major blow to the local film community. Burning Paradise has not only supplied hard-to-find films for our VCRs and DVD players, it’s been a major sponsor of Alibi Midnight Movies, it’s organized film classes, screenings and festivals (the annual TromaDance New Mexico), and it’s formed a label to release local films (Gimme Skelter, Slumber Party Slaughterhouse and Fugue State among them).
In January, the store relocated from Downtown to the Bricklight District on Harvard, where it seemed to find a receptive new audience of UNM students. You could blame the store’s closure on the poor economy or changing film-viewing habits, but it seems like owner Kurly Tlapoyawa has simply decided it’s time to move on. For the immediate future, he’ll be concentrating on his career as a stuntman (check him out in Gamer, Crank: High Voltage and the upcoming Undocumented) and promises to keep Burning Paradise alive as a boutique video label.
While we’re sad to see Burning Paradise go, leaving us to the whims of Redbox and Netflix, we can at least give it a proper send-off. The store will be liquidating all of its stock, starting this week. Grab a piece of Albuquerque cinema history by purchasing a copy of your favorite Italian zombie movie, French vampire flick or American grindhouse classic. Burning Paradise is located at 115 Harvard SE. You’ve got until the end of the month to get over there and bid the place a fond farewell.