to determine if it the tape or the machine, put another tape known to be good and play it.
If it's the problem is the machine, then you will know what to do with it.
If it's the tape, you would check it for broken leader or if it is jam. In either case, you can fix that with a little ingenuity. Good luck.
I have an old tape of my rock band from the 80s. I really want to dub it or even transfer it to DVD. It PLAYED near the end of the tape when I first tried it, but after rewinding it, no video plays. Even tho it moves thru the VCR the counter doesn't increase (it stays at 00:00:00). Is there anything I can do? I heard everything from put it in the freezer to wipe the tape with alcohol, but I think my problem is different.