Chabot College
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Human Sexuality: Searching for Movies on Love and Sex From the 1930’s to the Present

Finding Movies  |  Finding Information About MoviesReference Books  |  Library Subscription Databases
Web Sites  |  Web Sites On Awards  |  Citing Sources (MLA Format)

Finding Movies
To find Videotapes and DVD’s for movies to view.  Also includes a TV listing web site.

Library Catalog

Public Library Catalogs
Links to Public Libraries:

Alameda County Library Catalog:

Start with searching the Alameda County Library catalog.  You can repeat search in other public/academic library catalogs such as Hayward Public Library’s.  Other library’s catalogs can be found from local public library web pages.

Video Rental Stores: Must either call the store or go to the store, itself to find out if they have particular movie titles.

Online Video/DVD Rental Services (such as NetFlix)

Yahoo! TV Guide
Search up to the next two weeks for programming, whether its local, cable or satellite stations.  Use the keyword search to search by movie title.  Make plans to view the movie or to set up your VCR or other video recorder to tape it!

Finding Information About Movies

Pop Culture Universe:
  To view full text, get the username and the password from the Reference Desk.

Reference Books:  Following is a list of reference books that contain reviews, plot synopses, and when relevant, awards information.  Most Reference books will be found from PN 1993 to PN 1995.

The New York Times Directory of the Film

Reference:  PN 1995 N3

Published in 1968, this book contains reviews from the 1930’s to 1968, as well as “Ten Best” and “New York Film Critics Circle Awards” listings.

70 Years of the Oscar

Reference:  PN 1993.92 O82 1999

Published in 1999, contains the listings of the nominations and the winners of all Oscar categories in its first seventy years.

The other books listed below lead to plot synopses, film credits, and sometimes reviews.

Magills Survey of Cinema: English Language Films—First Series and Second Series (1920-1980)—Selections, not complete

Reference:  PN 1995 M3

Magill’s Survey of Cinema: Foreign Language Films (1920-1984)—Selections, not complete

Reference:  PN 1993.45 M34

Magill’s Cinema Annual (1981-2002)—Each year’s edition lists the previous year’s.  For example the 1992 volume lists 1991 films.

Reference:  PN 1995 M3

The Motion Picture Guide—Each year’s edition lists the previous year’s.

Reference:  PN 1995 M7 1996

John Willis’ Screen World (1969-2002)—Each year’s edition lists the previous year’s.  Pictures and screen credits, only.

Reference:  PN 1993.3 D3

Film (1968-1974)—Essays on motion pictures

Reference:  PN 1993.3 F38

Library Subscription Databases

The Library subscribes to a number of premium databases that contain indexes of originally published material from magazines, newspapers, journals, and some reference books. 

To select a database, go to— 
Magazine, Journal, Newspaper Articles and More

Databases to Select:

Lexis-Nexis Book, Movie, Music, and Play Reviews (under Reference):  Search by “All Dates.”  While full text articles go back to the 1980’s, any motion picture that has come out on DVD will likely be reviewed.  Originally published in mostly major newspaper sources.

EbscoHost Academic Search EliteIf you get a lot of results, you can narrow down your search by clicking on the “Refine Search” tab and then, under “Document Type” select “Entertainment Review”

Ebsco Host Full Text Only SearchSearch all EbscoHost databases at once.  Click on any EbscoHost link that does NOT say “go directly into the database” and then click on the third link of the center of the page that states “Full Text Only in All EbscoHost Databases” (do not click on the link the line before as that leads you to different criteria).  If you get too many results, use the pull-down menu on the right and change “Default Fields” to “SU Subject Terms” with the title of the movie.  You can also enter in another of the search bar, the word “Reviews” for narrowing down further.

ProQuest Diversity DatabasesFor reviews on more independent/smaller films.

Web Sites

Key:  Begin with particular sites devoted to motion pictures rather than searching randomly on the World Wide Web.  You will save yourself a lot of time, especially since your first hits will more often be those of online stores selling you the motion picture in VHS or DVD format.

Rotten Tomatoes
The authoritative web directory of motion picture reviews available on the World Wide Web.  Best to search if you have a pop-up ad blocker, however, and when done searching, you will want to make sure to delete cookies you have collected.

Internet Movie Database
Mainly good for searching for film credits.  Contains synopsis and reviews, though often by the general public and not by reputable film critics.

Significant Web Sites on Awards:

InfoPlease Movie Awards
The listings of many different movie awards.  Some listings only include winners and some only go back a few years.  For more information, check out sites on awards such as the ones listed below.

Academy Award Winners
Also includes nominees for each year as well from 1927 to present.

Golden Globe
Nominees and winners listed by year and category (from 1943 to present).  Search by “Film Title” for nominees/winners to a particular motion picture.

Cannes Film Festival
The winners for each year are listed from 1946 to present.

Screen Actors Guild
The nominees and winners from 1995 to present.

New York Film Critics Circle Awards
Established awards honored to films by the critics of New York.  The winners from 1935 to present.

Los Angeles Film Critics Association
Awards honored by the critics who live around Hollywood.  The winners and runners-up from 1975 to 2000.
1995 to present Winners:

Broadcast Film Critics Association
Winners listed from 1995 to present.

Golden Raspberry Foundation
The awards honored for the worst movies of the year.  From 1980 to present.

MTV Movie Awards
2003 Winners and Nominees (Hit “next” for each category):

Past Winners (1998 to 2002):  Winners only

Fan Site on MTV Movie Awards (1992 to 2001):

The MTV Movie Awards provide untraditional categories and make the award shows a spectacle.  Winners are picked by MTV viewers, themselves, so the winners and nominees are often less traditional as they are selected by a younger demographic.  For the fan site, you should verify the source by looking it up from an online newspaper in Lexis-Nexis Academic.

Citing an Article, Book, or Website

Take a look at the MLA Citation Handout.  Take note that when citing an article from a Library Subscription Database such as the ones listed above, you need to follow special instructions.

MLA Citation Handout

Article From a Library Subscription Database


Handouts Home Page

Library Home Page

Chabot Home Page

This web site was last updated on April 1, 2009.
 If you have any questions or want to suggest any additions, please contact
Norman Buchwald, Information Literacy and Technology Librarian.
 ©2001, 2004.  Chabot College