Just returned my last rental to Cinema Nolita — Darjeeling Limited, which I watched with my daughters the other night, and returned on time! The store kept renting as long as they possibly could, signing up new members, too. The fundraisers and almost-midnight movies brought in enough to cover most of the back rent, but the space will be turned over to a new tenant shortly. Probably a luxury boutique — exactly what we need in the middle of a recession! Nothing creates neighborhood community like a good luxury boutique!

Snarkiness aside, there’s some good news: they didn’t have to sell off the collection. A majority of the staff was there tonight, packing boxes. (The scene almost made me weepy!) They were quick to offer reassurances that the business would continue in some form — rentals brought to your doorstep by bike messenger? I’ll look forward to seeing what comes next.

To Michael, Eleonore, Claire, Chris and all the rest, from this corner of Little Italy we say, “Thanks!”