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Using SOLO to find Film Studies material: Searching SOLO

and a guide to the Film Studies Classification Scheme
Subjects: English, Film Studies

Searching for film materials

SOLO is the library catalogue, covering the majority of Library collections of the University of Oxford.

The easiest way to find materials on a particular film, director or genre is to use the search box on the main front page of SOLO. Type in your search keywords (e.g. Fritz Lang) and click on the 'Search' button. If you use the default 'Search Everything' you will find books, films, journal articles and more. You can then refine your results using the 'Sort & Filter' options in the column to the left of the search results (eg limit 'Resource Type' to 'Videos').

Alternatively, if you are looking just for films, you can use the 'Advanced Search' option. From Advanced Search you can use the 'Material Type' dropdown menu to limit to 'Video/Film'.

Limit to films from a specific country

Films in our collections are essentially organised by country, so if you want to browse through all the films we have from Germany, for example, you will need to do a specific shelfmark search using the relevant country code (as listed in the 'Country codes' section of this guide). You will need to add an * at the end of the shelfmark string (e.g. PN.G3* to generate a list of all German films) and to select 'in the shelfmark' from the third drop-down menu underneath the main search box.

When doing a specific shelfmark search on a country, it might also help to limit your search to a specific library (Anglo-American film at the English Faculty Library; European and World Cinema at the Taylor Institution Library). All films are kept behind the Issue Desk in each library so you will need to make a note of the shelfmark of the film you require and ask library staff to fetch it for you.

Search for people in cast and credits lists

If you are not sure of the title or director, but wish to search for performers or people who contribute to the artistic or technical production of a film, a useful source of information for cast and credits lists is the Internet Movie Database. From this database you can find the films with which the people you are interested in are associated.

Other websites with useful catalogues of films include:
All Movie Guide
American Film Institute Catalog of American Feature Films
British Film Catalogue
(for British films made since 1998)