These books will help you learn more about movies and film theory. They represent only a small fraction of what we have to offer--please search our catalog, or ask a reference librarian for more information!
[Original poster for The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951).]
Interested in the ways filmmakers explore social issues? Intrigued by the play of light and shadow in a good film noir? Inspired by the passionate, erudite writing of our best film critics? Really like great movies? The resources on this page can give you ideas for exploring the vast range of films and film scholarship.
The internet abounds with commentary about movies. Here's a few hand-picked resources to get you started.
Films Selected to the National Film Registry: 500+ films and counting, this list provided by the National Film Preservation Board shows all the movies that have been selected for special preservation measures because of their cultural or aesthetic impact.
The Great Movies: Roger Ebert's series about films that made an impact. Covers a broad range of movies from the past to the present, mainstream and independent, from countries all over the world.
Filmsite: Useful for its accessibility and breadth, but occasionally glib or inaccurate about key points of film history.
Films of Interest
A rotating selection of some of the films owned by CSCC Library.
Call Number: DVD 791.4375 U26
Publication Date: 1953
Beautifully shot and performed, Ugetsu is part ghost story, part drama; a tale about what happens when men are led astray by greed and ambition.
City Lights by
Call Number: DVD 791.43617 C5811
Publication Date: 1931
A silent film created well into the sound era, City Lights is beloved not only for its profoundly moving story of redemption, but for the flawless timing of its comedy, including an exquisite boxing match that is more dance than fight scene.
Call Number: DVD 791.43617 V944
Publication Date: 2006
Almodóvar's story of sisters revisiting their family's past was praised by critics, and deals with serious subjects in a way that ultimately inspires hope.
The Public Enemy by
Call Number: DVD 791.4372 P9763
Publication Date: 1931
A powerful, influential gangster film that rocketed to fame and shocked censors, The Public Enemy is a foundational work and a must-see for anyone with an interest in crime films.
The Last Laugh by
Call Number: DVD 791.4372 L3493
Publication Date: 1924
This landmark silent film features amazing camerawork and profoundly moving performances, which work together (without the benefit of title cards) to tell a devastating story of age and loss.
Gold Diggers of 1933 by
Call Number: DVD 791.4372 G6181
Publication Date: 1933
Featuring several famous numbers choreographed by Busby Berkeley, lots of witty banter, and performances by some of the best comedic actresses of the time, Gold Diggers of 1933 is a saucy pre-Code musical that still entertains.
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