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Film Studies

Recommended websites

Useful websites that are relevant to Film studies include:

A comprehensive catalogue of American feature films

Provides a single point of entry for finding and searching performing arts collections in the UK.

For films made since 1998

This site offers a wealth of information and resources about British film and TV.  Also available is online access to the catalogue of one of the world's largest research collections of materials on British (and international) cinema, and television

The BFI's platform for 1000s of titles from film & TV archives in the UK, about life in Britain (part of the wider BFIPlayer online resource)

150 Chilean films onlinen (University of Chile)

Gateway to film archives from all over Europe, focusing on non-fiction film.

Iinterpretive and detailed plot synopses, review commentary, an unparalleled wealth of film reference material, and historical background for hundreds of classic Hollywood/American and other English-language films in the last century.

A database of film related information including cats lists, production credits etc.

Dedicated website on British video and film art containing an archive of works by film and video artists, including synopses, artist biographies, stills and streamed clips, in-depth features and essays on different artists who work with film and video.

Contains reviews of nearly 100,000 films, taken from a variety of sources including newspapers, other websites and entertainment magazines.

Screenonline is a website devoted to the history of British film and television, and to Britain's social history as revealed by film and television. It features hundreds of hours of video clips from the collections of the bfi National Film and Television Archive, alongside thousands of stills, posters and press books, several hours of recorded interviews with film and television personalities together with a wealth of contextual information. It should be noted that the video and audio clips can only be accessed through university computers, not through a home computer.

The ABC of Evaluation

Here is a suggested set of questions to ask yourself when making an assessment of any published source of information, not just websites:

A - Authority

Who authored it, and what are his/her/their credentials?  In the case of a book, there may be something in the 'blurb' on the back cover about the author. In academic publications there are often notes about the author(s) and their qualifications and experience which enable them to speak authoritatively about their subject.  Are they affiliated to a university or a research institute?

Websites are often created by more than one person, but it is still important to check who the authors are.  See if there is an 'About Us' link giving information about the website, or the organisation and people maintaining it.  Are there any reliable contact details?  What are the stated aims of the organisation?

Does the book or website contain up-to-date references to source materials, particularly to original research or statistics, so that you can check whether the discussion or opinions are based on reliable facts?  Is it aimed at a popular audience, or is it more scholarly and reasoned in its approach?  What kind of language does it use: is it rhetorical or emotive, and does the author back up his/her/their arguments with appropriate facts and original sources?

B - Bias

Think about the possibility of any bias in the information you have found.  Is it possible that the organisation represented by the author or website has a particular standpoint to promote: is it a campaigning or pressure group, a government department, or public information service?

If the source is likely to have a bias, make sure you check any references or links provided, and find some other sources with a contrasting standpoint, preferably from an academic book or journal.  It is good practice to use a variety of sources of information so you can compare and contrast different viewpoints on a topic.

C - Currency

Check how up-to-date the information is.  A book or a journal will usually have a clear date of publication on its cover or title page. If it doesn't, check the date of the latest item in any bibliography at the end of the book or article.

In the case of a website, try to find the date when it was last updated.  In some subjects such as law or economics, the validity of information may change more rapidly than in others, so you will need to be careful.   Are any links from it to other sites still active?

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