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Local Video Kiosks Offer New Releases Before Redbox

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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — There is a new video rental ‘box’ in town. Like Redbox, you can now rent DVDs at three Pik Ur Flik kiosks in the Twin Cities area.

There are three main differences between Pik Ur Flik and Redbox besides it being locally owned and operated.

First, movie trailers of the videos are available to play on a video screen at the kiosk.

Next, the DVDs are rented with the original casing and packaging.

And perhaps the biggest consumer benefit of Pik Ur Flik is that it will rent selected new releases sooner than Redbox and Netflix.

“For example I have ‘Bridesmaids’ in my kiosk right now,” said owner Jennifer Wagner. “You can’t rent that at any other self-serve movie kiosk.”

Pik Ur Flik’s website has an email and phone number listed that will directly connect you to someone local.

“I am the customer service,” said Wagner.

With more and more video rental options available to consumers there aren’t as many locally owned video stores as their used to be, but there are exceptions.

“As near as I can tell you everybody is gone,” said Filmzilla owner Chris Becker about the brick-and-mortar video stores of the past. “We’re kind of the dinosaur, which is why we’re Filmzilla.”

Becker has moved the store — which was in Uptown and called Village Video — to East Franklin Ave. and 27th St. South. His survival strategy for his store is simple: offer what Redbox and Netflix don’t.

“We have over 80,000 titles,” said Becker. “What we survive on is the enthusiast. The stuff they’ve read about or remember from 30 years ago.”

The vast movie selection is what keeps Filmzilla customers coming back.

One customer said, “Redbox only has new titles. What if you’re looking for something a little older?”

For Wagner, Pik Ur Flik is simply replacing the video stores that are no longer around.

“There’s room for both of us,” said Wagner. “I certainly don’t want to put anyone out of business right now, by any means. I’m providing a service that customers want.”

Pik Ur Flick can be found at On the Run Mobile convenience stores in Elk River, Blaine, and Chaplin.

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