American Film Institute Catalog of Motion Pictures
Main Library Reference PN 1998 .A57
A monumental, multivolume reference set (and online database) that provides comprehensive information on every feature, short, and newsreel produced by the American film community since 1893 — in other words, a catalog of over 45,000 films to date. Includes approximately one million personal name entries. Each film title entry includes a plot summary.
British Film Catalogue, 1895-1985: A Reference Guide
Main Library Reference PN 1998 .G543 1986
A comprehensive chronological listing of the British "entertainment film," but excludes newsreels, documentaries, and made-for-television films. Brief plot summaries.
Filming Florida: Images of the Sunshine State
Florida Documents SS.D2:F45
A list of films produced between 1917 and the 1980s that have been donated to the Florida State Archives. Most were produced by the Florida Development Commission, but also contains features by WFSU-TV, the state highway patrol, the Florida Department of Natural Resources, and a number of individuals and corporations.
Guide to American Screenwriters: The Sound Era, 1929-1982
Main Library Reference PN 1998 .L24
Volume 1 is an alphabetical list of around 5,000 screenwriters, with names of films in chronological order and co-authors noted. Volume 2 lists films by title and writers' names for each.
Halliwell's Film Guide
Main Library Reference PN 1993.45 .H27
The latest edition provides brief credit information and pithy critical notes on 18,000 English-language and selected foreign-language feature films. Short excerpts from critics or from reviews accompany many entries.
International Film Index, 1895-1990
Main Library Reference PN 1998 .I52 1991
Seeks to provide "a comprehensive index to films by title and director on a worldwide basis" (preface). Volume 1 lists approximately 175,000 films of both the silent and sound eras and includes full-length, short, documentary, animated, serial, and made-for-television features. Volume 2 lists films by 25,000 directors.
Touted as the largest international movie database on the Internet, containing thousands of films and film credits.
Leonard Maltin's Movie and Video Guide
Main Library Reference PN 1992.8 .F5 L36
Currently includes approximately 19,000 entries, with short notes on plot and narrative assessments.
Motion Picture Guide and Annual
Main Library Reference PN 1993 .M4334
The first ten volumes of this set offer data on over 40,000 films released in the United States through 1984, along with plot summary and evaluations for most. Volumes 11-12 have variant title, series, and name indexes. Kept up-to-date after 1984 by the Annual, with extensive indexing in the back of each volume.
The TCM movie database, available on the cable channel's Internet site, provides full credits and detailed synopses for many mainstream, "classic" films.
From the TV Guide site, a searchable database of more than 40,000 film titles and biographies and over 750,000 filmographies. Most of the information is from the printed sources, Motion Picture Guide and Annual (Main Library Reference PN 1993 .M4334) and the Film Encyclopedia (Main Library Reference PN 1993.45 .K34).