Consumer home video changed the media landscape of the West. But what happened when American VHS movies made it behind the Iron Curtain?
Ilinca Calugareanu grew up in Romania and remembers watching smuggled tapes in the 80s, all dubbed by the same woman, Irina Nistor. These pirated movies gave people living under a totalitarian regime a peek at freedom and made Chuck Norris, Van Damme, and Bruce Lee into national heroes.
Calugareanu is currently making a documentary, Chuck Norris vs Communism, about the impact of VHS, and the movies that helped a nation overthrow a brutal dictator.