Film Resources

Theda Bara, Publicity portrait of Theda Bara for Cleopatra.  Courtesy of ArtStor.

                                   Theda Bara, Publicity portrait of Theda Bara for Cleopatra.  Courtesy of ArtStor.

The purpose of this guide is to lead the beginning researcher to the most important and useful sources in the Reference Collection and online for the study of film.  The list of sources is not exhaustive; please consult with a Reference Librarian for additional suggestions. 


Academy Awards:  An Ungar Reference Index.  Compiled by Richard Shale (1978).  Call no.:  REF 791.43079 Shale.

African American Films Through 1959:  A Comprehensive, Illustrated Filmography by Larry Richards (1998).  Call no.: R 791.4365203 96073 Richards. 

The American Movies Reference Book The Sound Era by Paul Michael, editor (1970).  Call no: REF 791.43 Mi.

Blacks in Black and White:  A Source Book on Black Films by Henry T. Sampson (1977).  Call no.:  REF 791.43 Sampson.

Cinema Sequels and Remakes, 1903-1987 by Robert A. Nowlan and Gwendolyn Wright Nowlan (1989).  Call no.: REF 791.4375 Nowlan. 

Classic Movie Companion by Robert Moses, ed., (1999).  Call no.: REF 791.43 Classic.

Cult Movies:  Over 100 Films from the Silent Era to the Present by Danny Peary (1981).  Call no.: REF 791.4375 Peary. 

Film Fact Finder  by Camilla Rockwood, ed. (2006).  Call no.:  REF 791.43 Chambers.

Film Facts by Cobbett Steinberg (1980).  Call no.: R 791.43 Steinberg.

The Film Index v. 1:  The Film as Art.  Compiled by Workers of the Writer's Program of the Work Projects Administration in the City of New York (1966).  Call no. 791.43 WR.

Filmed Books and Plays:  A List of Books and Plays from which films have been made 1975-1981  by A.G.S. Enser
(1982)  Call no.: REF 791.43 Ens.

The Folger Shakespeare Filmography:  A Directory of Feature Films Based on the Work of Shakespeare by Barry M. Parker (1979) Call no.: R 791.43 Parker.

Great Movie Directors by Ted Sennett (1986) Call no.: REF 791.43 Sen.

Guide to American Cinema, 1965-1995 by Daniel Curran (1998).  Call no.: REF 791.43097 Curran.

Guide to the Silent Years of American Cinema by Donald W. McCaffrey and Christopher P. Jacobs (1999).  Call no.: REF 791.4309 McCaffrey.

Horror and Science Fiction Films  by Donald C. Willis (1972)  Call no.:  REF 791.43 Willis.

Latino Media Resource Guide by the National Association of Latino Independent Producers (2004).  Call no.: REF 791.43 Latino.

The List:  The National Society of Film Critics' 100 Essential Films by Jay Carr, ed. (2002).  Call no.: REF 791.437 A.

Magill's Survey of Cinema:  English Language Films by Frank N. Magill, ed. (1980) v1-4.  Call no.: R 791.4375 Magill.

The Movie List Book:  A Reference Guide to Film Themes, Settings, and Series (1990) by Richard B. Armstrong and Mary Willems Armstrong.  Call no.: REF 791.4375 Arm.

Movies Made for Television:  The Telefeature and Mini-Series 1961-1986 by Alvin H. Marill (1987).  Call no.: R 791.437 Mar.

The Oxford Companion to Film by Liz-Anne Bawden (1976).  Call no.: REF 791.43 Oxford.

Reel Black Talk:  A Sourcebook of 50 American Filmmakers by Spencer Moon (1997).  Call no.:  R791.430233 Moon.

Stars and Stripes on Screen:  A Comprehensive Guide to Portrayals of American Military of Film by Lawrence H. Suid and Dolores A. Haverstick (2005).  Call no.: REF 791.43658 Suid.

Television Westerns:  Major and Minor Series 1946-1978 by Richard West (1987).  Call no.: R791.4509 Wes.

The Story of Cinema:  A Complete Narrative History from the Beginnings to the Present by David Shipman (1982).  Call no. REF 791.4309 Shi.

VideoHound's golden Movie Retriever by Jim Craddock, ed. (2001).  Call no.: REF 791.43 Videohound's v. 2001.

Women Filmmakers & Their Films by Amy L. Unterburger, ed. (1998).  Call no.:  REF 791.43082 Women.


A Biographical Dictionary of Film by David Thomson (1995).  Call no.: REF 791.43 Thomson.

Complete Film Dictionary by Ira Konigsberg (1997).  Call no.: REF 791.43 Konigsberg.

Dictionary of Film Terms:  The Aesthetic Companion to Film Analysis by Frank Beaver (1994).  Call no.: REF 791.4303 Beaver.

The Film Studies Dictionary by Steve Blandford, Barry Keith Grant and Jim Hillier (2001).  Call no.: REF 791.43 Blandford.

International Dictionary of Films and Filmmakers -1 Films by Nicholas Thomas, ed. (1990).  Call no.: REF 791.43 Int.

International Dictionary of Films and Filmmakers -2 Directors by Tom Pendergast and Sara Pendergast, eds. (2000).  Call no.:  REF 791.4303 International.

Women Directors & Their Films by Mary G. Hurd (2007).  Call no.: REF 791.43023 Hurd.

Women Film Directors:  An International Bio-Critical Dictionary by Gwendolyn Audrey Foster (1995).  Call no.: REF 791.4302 330922 Foster.


Blacks in American Films and Television:  An Illustrated Encyclopedia by Donald Bogle (1988).  Call no.:  REF 791.43 Bog.

The Encyclopedia of Alfred Hitchcock by Thomas Leitch (2002).  Call no.:  REF 791.430233 Leitch.

The Encyclopedia of Stanley Kubrick by Gene D. Phillips and Rodney Hill (2002).  Call no.:  REF 791.430233 Hill.

Hispanics in Hollywood:  An Encyclopedia of Film and Television  by Luis Reyes and Peter Rubie (1994).  Call no.:  REF 791.4208 968 Reyes.

Images in the Dark:  An Encyclopedia of Gay and Lesbian Film and Video  by Raymond Murray (1996).  Call no.: REF 791.43653 Murray.

The Macmillan International Film Encyclopedia by Ephraim Katz (2001).  Call no. 791.4303 Katz.


A Biographical Handbook of Hispanics and United States Film by Gary D. Keller (1997).  Call no.:  R791.430896 8073 Keller.

The Film Handbook by Geoff Andrew (1990).  Call no.:  REF 791.43 Andrew.

Hispanics and United States Film:  An Overview and Handbook by Gary D. Keller (1994).  Call no.: R 791.4308068 Keller.


The Sonoma/Napa and Partners (SNAP) online catalog is the gateway to circulating books on film. Search by keyword, author, title or subject. Subject headings strive to identify topics with consistent terminology. The basic terminology is produced by the Library of Congress. Always look at the subject headings in any catalog, database or index to make sure that you are searching with the most relevant terminology. Once you have the right terms, it's much easier to find the right books.When searching by subject, use one or more of the subject headings below:

Motion Pictures -- United States --History
Motion Picture --Appreciation
Film Genres
Documentary Films     

Connect to SNAP catalog

The following databases may be useful in locating information on film. These reference sources are available online through Solano, Napa and Partners (SNAP) databases and require a library card or e-card to access them.

Academic Search Complete (Ebsco)
Biography In Context (Gale)
Infotrak Newsstand (Gale)
General OneFile (Gale)


AFI: 10 Top 10 (
The American Film Institute (AFI) lists Top 10 films in many genres, based on polls conducted throughout the American film industry.

Academy Awards Database (
Search for past Academy Awards winners and nominees in all categories from the first awards to 2009.

Cinema:  An Interactive Workshop
Find out how films are made from screenwriting to directing to editing. 

Filmsite (
History of American movies and genres with links to award-winners, "greatest film" lists, profiles and genres.  Great website for finding topic ideas and film titles.

The History and Discovery of Cinematography (
Paul Burns, film historian, helps to provide a substantial glimpse into the past history and discovery of cinematography (from 900 BC to 1900).  Fifteen chapters are available to peruse. 

Images:  A Journal of Film and Popular Culture
Online journal published on the web quarterly, with new reviews added weekly, looking at the relationship between popular culture and films, actors, and directors.

Internet Movie Database (
A large database of movie information, including plot summaries, cast and crew lists, awards, etc. 

Motion Picture Association of America (
This site contains film ratings, content protection information, policy and research, resources for parents and a frequently asked questions section. (
", the Movie Review Query Engine, is the Internet’s largest database for movie reviews. Founded in 1993, MRQE (pronounced "marquee"), is a searchable index of all published and available movie reviews, news, interviews, and other material associated to movies. The combination of reviews + news + user discussion, all accessed through MRQE’s search portal, allows any user to read and add to the Internet’s most comprehensive collection of opinion about film."


American Society of Cinematographers (
Advice, articles, forums, listings of film schools, and other resources.

Motion Picture Editor's Guild (
Career information onfilm editing, including wages, news, advice and more.

Women in Film (
An organization founded in order to "recognize, develop, and actively promote the unique visions of women in the global communications industry."  WIF's site offers articles, a job bank, and information about the organization.

Writer's Guild of America (
Interviews with Hollywood screenwriters, tutorials and advice on writing, resources, and much more.

Copyright (C) 2010 Napa Valley College                                                  By:  Napa Valley College Library
Last updated:  Nov. 15, 2010                                                                  Questions & Comments: Nancy McEnery