Film & Film Criticism
Choosing a topic
When choosing a topic for your research paper, think about the following:
- Unless your instructor assigns a topic, try to select a topic that interests you.
- Make sure your topic is not too broad, or too narrow. You will find too much information when searching for a broad topic; and not enough information when searching for a narrow topic.
- If you already have a general topic, try searching the library's catalog or the library's databases for ideas on how to narrow that topic down.
- Visit the library's Reference Desk and request to view the following book: 10,000 ideas for term papers, projects, reports and speeches: Intriguing, original research topics for every student's need.
- For current events and issues in the news, try searching the library's database: CQ Researcher.
- For debatable or controversial issues, ask one of the librarians about the Opposing Viewpoints Series, the Taking Sides Series, Issues in Focus Series and/or the Current Controversies Series.
- Visit the Social Issues Research Guide. There you will find a list of current social issues to choose from.
Books will provide an excellent starting point for your research in the field of Film & Film Criticism . Reference books often give you background information and a general overview on your topic so that you can proceed with greater understanding to a more detailed treatment of your subject in other books and periodicals. Reference books may include specialized dictionaries, encyclopedias, handbooks, almanacs, atlases and/or statistical reports. The librarian at the Reference Desk can help in locating an appropriate source. Listed below are the titles and call numbers of some of the Film & Film Criticism books in the library's reference collection. The reference collection is located on the main level of the library. Books with a location of Reference cannot be checked out of the library. The Circulating Collection is on the second floor of the library. Books with a location of Circulating may be checked out.
To search the Catalog for a book, click on it's callnumber below.
Encyclopedias, Dictionaries, Handbooks
|Contemporary Theatre, Film and Television||Reference||PN2012 .W51|
|Encyclopedia of Film Themes, Settings & Series||Reference||PN1997.8 .A76 2001|
|Encyclopedia of Novels into Film||Reference||PN1997.85 .T54 1998|
|Film Encyclopedia||Reference||PN1993.45 .K34 1998|
|Film: An International History of the Medium||Reference||PN1993.5 .A1 S55|
|Halliwell's Film and Video Guide||Circulating||PN1998 .H433|
|History of the American Cinema (10 volumes)||Reference||PN1993.5 .U6 H55 1990|
|International Dictionary of Film and Filmmakers (5 volumes)||Reference||PN1997.8 .I58|
|Oxford Companion to Film||Reference||PN1993.45 O9|
|Oxford History of World Cinema||Reference||PN1993.5 .A1 O96 1996|
|VideoHound's Golden Movie Retriever||Reference||PN1992.95 .V554|
Summaries and Casts of Individual Films
|Film Review Annual (1987-2002)||Reference||PN1995 .F465|
|Magill's Cinema Annual (1982-Current Volume)||Reference||PN1993.45 .M33|
|Magill's Survey of Cinema (English Lang.-1st Series)||Reference||PN1993.45.M3|
|Magill's Survey of Cinema (English Lang.-2ndSeries)||Reference||PN1993.45.M32|
|Magill's Survey of Cinema (Silent Films)||Reference||PN1995.75 .M33|
The library catalog is used to locate books both at RVCC, as well as from other libraries in the Somerset County Library System. Books will provide in-depth information not found in reference sources.
- Start with a Keyword search. Once you find one or two books about your topic, check the book's record to see what Subjects are being used. Once you find the appropriate Subject Heading, repeat your search using those headings. Generally, the results from a Subject search will always be more accurate than the results from a Keyword search.
- If you know the title of the book you are looking for, do a Title search.
- If you are looking for a book with a specific author, do an Author search (last name first).
Suggested Subject Headings for Film & Film Criticism :
Click a subject heading below to use it as the search term for a Subject Search in the catalog.
- Film criticism
- Film noir
- Historical films
- Indians in motion pictures
- Motion picture actors and actresses
- Motion pictures
- Motion pictures -- History
- Motion pictures -- Production and direction
- Motion pictures -- Reviews
- Motion pictures -- United States
- Politics in motion pictures
- Western films
Consult with the reference librarian to find the term best suited to your needs.
Browse the Collection:
Most of the books can be found in the following areas:
- PN1993-1999 -- Motion picture
- PN1997-1997.85 -- Plays, scenarios, etc.
- PN2000-3307 -- Dramatic representation. The theater
All of the library's circulating books are located on the upper level of the library.
For additional library catalogs, including libraries in Hunterdon and Middlesex counties, consult the Additional Library Catalogs page. If you find a book in one of these catalogs that the library does not own, request the book using the library's Interlibrary Loan Service.
Research Databases - Finding Articles
The Evelyn S. Field Library has access to thousands of periodicals. (Periodicals can be magazines, scholarly journals, or newspapers.) Some periodicals are in the library's print (or hard copy) collection. However, the majority of periodicals are available in the Research Databases. These databases provide access to articles. This information is generally more current than material found in books.
Search for periodical articles on Film & Film Criticism using the databases listed below. They can be accessed from the Library Database Page. (If you are using these databases from an off-campus location, you will be asked to identify yourself by logging in with your Username and Password. This is the same login you use on campus. The Research Databases are available only to registered RVCC students.)
- Academic Search Complete
Featuring thousands of full-text journals, this scholarly collection offers unmatched coverage of information spanning a broad range of important areas of academic study including: anthropology, astronomy, biology, chemistry, civil engineering, engineering, ethnic & multicultural studies, geology, law, materials science, mathematics, music, pharmaceutical sciences, physics, psychology, religion & theology, veterinary science, women's studies, zoology, and many other fields.
- Communication & Mass Media
CMMC offers cover-to-cover ("core") indexing and abstracts for over 390 journals, and selected ("priority") coverage of 200 more, for a combined coverage of nearly 600 titles. Furthermore, this database includes full text for 285 journals.
- Literature Resource Center
"The Literature Resource Center on GaleNet is a complete literature reference database designed for both the undergraduate and graduate student as well as the sophisticated casual user. Rich in biographical, bibliographical, and critical content, the Literature Resource Center is the premier Internet resource for information on literary figures from all time periods writing in such genres as fiction, nonfiction, poetry, drama, history, journalism, and more."
- ProQuest Central
ProQuest Central is the largest aggregated full-text database in the market today totaling more than 19,370 titles—with over 13,010 titles in full text. It serves as the central resource for researchers at all levels in all markets. ProQuest Central is designed to be the single-most used database in the library and beyond. It boasts over 160 subjects including core subject areas such as: Business and economics, Health and medical, News and world affairs, Science, Education, Technology, Humanities, Social Sciences, Psychology, `Literature, Law, Women's studies, ...and more.
After finding an article on your research topic, the database will either provide a citation and summary of the article, or it will provide the full-text (the complete article). If you are only given a citation and summary of the article, you can check the Periodical Locator to determine if the periodical you are looking for is available in another database. (The Periodical Locator is an alphabetical list of all the journals the library has access to. Feel free to talk with a librarian for assistance.) If the article is not available in any of the library's research databases, request the article using the library's Interlibrary Loan Service.
If, for your assignment, you are required to have sources from scholarly journals, use the Identifying Scholarly Articles guide to help you determine if your source is a magazine article or a scholarly article.
- Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
Source: Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
- American Film Institute
Source: American Film Institute -- Internet's largest film and media directory. Links to actors, TV, cinema, video, organizations, production, research.
Source: Source: The British Council -- Access to the British Film Catalog provides information on recent features, shorts, and documentaries. Also information on international film festivals.
- Classic Movies
Source: About.com -- Links to genre films, cult films and history of film.
Source: Earlycinema.com -- An introduction to the first decade of cinema. Includes a timeline, pioneers in the field and info about the early technology.
- Film Noir
Source: Tim Dirks -- Explores the "film noir" style of film making, including details about specific films.
- Greatest Films
Source: Tim Dirks, filmsite.org -- A site concentrating on classic Hollywood/American film. Includes commentary, historical background, reference materials, reviews and extensive information about film genres.
- Images: A Journal of Film and Popular Culture
Source: Gary Johnson -- A quarterly electronic journal about movies, TV, videos, and other popular visual arts. Includes current and past films.
- IMDb -- Internet Movie Database
Source: IMDb is part of the Amazon.com companies -- An international organization aiming to provide useful information on movies from around the world from the earliest cinema to the latest releases and including movies in production. Includes filmographies, plot summaries, character names, movie ratings, technical data, reviews, and box office grosses.
- Metacritic film
Source: Metacritic, Inc. -- Reviews movies based on a survey of critics nationwide. Emphasizes movies since 1999, but has scores for some older releases.
Source: MovieFlix.com -- Movies that are in the public domain are available for free from this site. Viewing requires RealPlayer. 28 categories of film are available.
- MRQE: Movie Review Query Engine
Source: Stewart M. Clamen -- Wonderful site for finding movie reviews. It includes more than 37,000 titles.
- Tom Valasek's American Film Course Websites
Source: Thomas Valasek, Faculty in Humanities Department, Raritan Valley Community College -- Websites recommended by Prof. Valasek for use by students in his American Film course. From the RVCC homepage, open RVCC Shortcuts window, select Academic Departments, then Communication and Languages, then Thomas Valasek (under Full-time Faculty), then American Film Course Websites.
- Top 100 American Films of the 20th Century
Source: American Film Institute -- Information about the top 100 films as well as the 100 funniest and the 100 top box office hits.
- Voice of the Shuttle: Media Studies Page
Source: Alan Liu, Professor of English, University of California, Santa Barbara -- Select Film/Video to link to a rich selection of resources in this area.
- Call or visit the Reference Desk to speak to one of the librarians. The Reference Desk is located on the main floor of the library. The phone number is 908-526-1200 x8350.
- Email your question to one of the librarians using the Ask-A-Librarian Service.
- For further information about this guide, please contact Alyssa Valenti
Last Updated - 01 November 2007