An important piece of film
research is the review. These can be short or lengthy analyses including previous work
by the director, the strength and weaknesses of the
storyline, how the work fits into the genre, and the actors'
skills. Here are some tips on finding reviews through a
variety of resources.
CSUSM has purchased
collections of film reviews, many of these titles are found
in the Reference collection.
to publication cycles, you will normally find reviews
for movies older than 2 years in books, but an entire book may be
devoted to one genre or director.
To find additional
materials, you can look through these catalogs:
Library Catalog what you can find in the Kellogg
Circuit is the joint
catalog for CSUSM, SDSU, UCSD, and USD with delivery in
1-3 days for CSUSM users.
Melvyl searches the entire University of
California catalog system and delivers in 5-10 days
through Interlibrary Loan for CSUSM.
searches a 'universe' of library catalogs and delivers
in 5-10 days through Interlibrary Loan for CSUSM.
Useful Subject Terms
Can't think of terms to accurately describe your topic?
Library catalogs use specific subject headings to group
related books together. 'Film' and 'review' are such large topics
and can be defined in multiple ways, so you will
want to think of ways to narrow it down, by title, director,
genre, etc. Ask a librarian to
help, or here are some
examples to consider:
provide access to new movie releases much more quickly than
in print or online, many journals are indexed in the
research databases. Two titles of special note are:
- Literature/Film Quarterly--print in the Library at PERIO
PN1995.3 .L57 or through the Communications and Mass
Media Database (1973-on)
- New Cinemas: Journal of Contemporary Film (2002-on in
Communication and Mass Media Database)
for film reviews in a research database, the easiest way is to type the title of
the movie. Add the word 'review 'as an
additional search term to help focus your search. If the
movie is an adaptation of a book, adding the additional term
'movie' or 'film' will eliminate most book reviews. Some databases do not offer
full text of the articles. Use the
to check our other resources for full text. Specialized or
foreign films that have been reviewed may also be found in
some of the more specialized databases such as Ethnic
Newswatch or Womens Studies International.
Academic Search Premier
Covers a wide array of subjects with full text for
nearly 1,850 scholarly journals, including more than
1,250 peer-reviewed titles.
Art Full Text
Indexes over 550 journals covering a wide variety of the
arts (film to fashion, classic to cutting edge, ancient
to modern) from the US and around the world.
Communication & Mass Media
Provides abstracts and full text for more than 200
Includes abstracts of articles from critical literary
and language journals.
Includes complete ABI Inform (business) and Newsstand
publications. As these will be mostly reviews published
in newspapers and more popular magazines, they may not
be the scholarly quality your instructor wants. Check
with your instructor or the librarian.
These may not be
as scholarly as published journal reviews, so be aware
of the credentials of the reviewer.
Best 1,000 Movies Ever Made
As determined by the New York Times reviewers with plot,
and reviews. Reviews are accessible after registering.
One individual's lists of the greatest films, but reviews,
plot summaries, and histories of the films make this
valuable along with a "Tips on Viewing Films Critically".
Chronology, glossary, Academy Award winners and more.
Images: A Journal of Popular Film and Culture
Discussion of films, genres and directors along with reviews
of both theatre-release movies and video.
Internet Movie Database
For basic information about a film, this is one of the more
complete sites. The comments from other visitors are NOT
scholarly, so don't rely on that part the site.
Movie Review Query
This site collects reviews from a variety of resources for
over 45,000 movies.
bit light-hearted in its treatment and again offers
viewer comments as well as snips from published reviews.
One of the more well-known popular
movie reviewers, this site assembles his reviews from
the Chicago Sun-Times newspaper.