Recommended Cinema Resources


(O – available in the Louisville Free Public Library’s system) (X – not available in LFPL’s system)

Film Comment (O)

Published by the Film Society of Lincoln Center in New York, Film Comment is a bi-monthly film magazine providing strong and thoughtful analysis of mainstream, art-house, and avant-garde film from around the world. Film Comment synthesizes historical as well as modern perspectives in its discussion of film, providing analysis that remains accessible to a broad audience, while retaining a deeply critical analysis.

Cinema Scope (X)

Cinema Scope is a quarterly film magazine providing reviews, news, and editorials on an inclusively global scale. Cinema Scope provides coverage to smaller names within the industry, and intentionally includes films from a diverse range of cultures.

Artforum (O)

First published in 1962, Artforum is an established publication in the art world, featuring writings on museums, artists, as well as modern coverage of film along with retrospective writings. A decisive voice within the art industry, Artforum is a dense yet spanning art journal.

Reverse Shot (X)

Published by the Museum of the Moving Image, Reverse Shot offers writings on film theory, reviews, retrospectives, and interviews from a deeply analytic perspective. Intentionally non-traditional in its approach, Reverse Shot takes on unique perspectives in covering a variety of medias, including film, television, and video games.

Senses Of Cinema (Free/Online)

Senses of Cinema is a quarterly online film journal, publishing writings by film critics from across the world, including film theory, coverage of festivals, as well as retrospectives on directors. The journal provides thoughtful and careful analysis of modern and classic films from a perspective inclined towards the craft of filmmaking.

Frieze (X)

Published eight times a year, Frieze offers critical writings from writers, artists, and curators, including essays, reviews, and columns. A quickly growing voice within the art industry, Frieze’s vast network of publications imbues the journal with a global perspective and authoritative voice on the art world.

Sight & Sound (O)

First published in 1932, the British Film Institute’s monthly magazine Sight & Sound is a compendium of writings from a variety of critics. A broadly inclusive publication, Sight & Sound includes writings on modern film and television, staking a claim as a news as well as a critical resource.

Variety (O)

First published in 1905, Variety is a weekly insider film-magazine, publishing reports from a perspective within the film industry, including reviews, interviews, and news on film production. Variety is the foremost name for filmic trade journals, and its opinionated voice accurately depicts the inner-workings of the film industry.

Hollywood Reporter (O – Digital)

Hollywood Reporter is a weekly entertainment magazine focusing on Hollywood and its ventures in film, television, and other entertainment. A large franchise, the Reporter is a spanning publication, highly inclusive of the many outputs of entertainment stemming from Tinseltown.

Afterall (X)

Afterall is a bi-annual art magazine, publishing highly critical analysis of contemporary art, including art film from the current day as well as the past. Carefully coordinated and edited, Afterall is a strong resource for an analytic perspective on the art world.

e-flux journal (X)

The e-flux journal is a monthly magazine aiming to provide critical discourse in regards to contemporary art, culture, and theory. Broad in its scope, e-flux integrates works from a variety of artists in its reporting and critical work.




VDrome is an online streaming service that offers regular screenings of films and video directed by visual artists and filmmakers. With high-quality and free screenings, VDrome is a curated resource that provides audiences with a strong selection of film with accompanying writings.



AFI Podcast Archive

The podcast run by the American Film Institute, these episodes include interviews and coverage of modern filmmakers, as well as retrospective episodes on film classics.

The Close-Up

Run by the Film Society of Lincoln Center, the Close-Up is a weekly podcast that provides interviews with filmmakers, actors, critics, and others within the industry. Interviews are conducted with heavy emphasis on the craft of film, drawing out informative interviews in which details of the processes and dynamics of filmmaking are divulged.




Indiewire is a daily news source for independent film, publishing interviews, reviews, essays, and other works. Indiewire provides a broad and accessible assortment of articles that provide coverage of the film industry in its current state as well as its past.


A carefully coordinated source for interviews, reviews, retrospectives, and critical works on film. C&B is a small and independent but highly polished resource for those concerned with film and filmmaking.


An online film journal providing essays on film theory and other critical works. With emphasis on critical analysis and a tendency towards use of theory, BrightLights provides articles concerned with the philosophical and ethical implications of film.


An online news source providing writings on international, independent, cult, and genre films. All-encompassing in its scope, Twitch provides reviews, news, writings, and more in an inclusive manner.

Experimental Cinema

An online resource for experimental cinema and video art. Experimental Cinema provides a resource for history, critical analysis, as well as resources for finding experimental film.



Association of Moving Image Archivists

A non-profit organization established to coordinate and connect film archivists in order to better protect and propagate moving image materials.

French Institute ; Alliance Francaise

FIAF is a non-profit organization located in New York which seeks to better exhibit French culture to an American audience, including French films from the present and past.

Bay Area Video Coalition

The BAVC seeks to provide artists and non-profit organizations with the technology, training, and support necessary to spread film as an art form.


Professional Development

National Alliance for Media Arts & Culture
A non-profit alliance of arts organizations which seeks to provide the proper resources to those aspiring to enter the media arts.



(O – available in the Louisville Free Public Library’s system) (X – not available in LFPL’s system)


Fellini on Fellini – Federico Fellini (O)

A compilation of writings, interviews, essays, reminiscings, and more from the great Italian auteur. Tracing his life to its very beginning, Fellini on Fellini paints a portrait of the director and all of his intricacies.

Hitchcock’s Films – Robin Wood (O)

Initially one of the few American voices which defended Hitchcock’s artistic integrity, Robin Wood’s writings on Hitchcock to this day remain insightful and provocative in their considerations of Hitchcock’s aesthetic and ethical value.

John Ford: The Man and His Films – Tag Gallagher (O)

Revered by many as the greatest of American directors, John Ford’s films revolutionized the film industry. This work offers a radical reinterpretation of Ford’s films, viewing his works through the lens of his characters, his beliefs, and his commentary.

My Life and My Films – Jean Renoir (O)

Tracing his life from the beginnings, from the young subject and son of the painter Auguste Renoir to the filmmaker whom Truffaut would call “infallible,” this autobiographical work reveals the humanity and intellect of the masterful, yet simplistic French director.

Scorsese by Ebert – Roger Ebert (O)

The relationship between Ebert and Scorsese began with Scorsese’s very first film, and lasted until Ebert’s death. Scorsese by Ebert chronicles reviews, interviews, and critical essays on all of Scorsese’s films from one of the most influential film critics in history.

My Last Sigh – Luis Buñuel (O)

As surreal and provocative as his films, Buñuel’s autobiography offers powerful insight into the mind of the great subversive director as he recollects his life and his intimate relationship with cinema.

Images: My Life in Film – Ingmar Bergman, Marianne Ruuth (O)

Though he had not seen his films since making them at the time of his writing, Bergman uses scripts, notes, and his memory to recollect his career in film, tracing the successes and failures, and reflecting upon the interplay of his life with his films.

Godard on Godard – Jean-Luc Godard (O)

A collection of film writings and interviews, Godard on Godard reveals the deeply intellectual and powerful voice that the French director possessed as both a filmmaker and film critic.

A Life in Movies – Michael Powell (O)

With a career that began as an assistant in the silent era and culminated as one of the most respected filmmakers of his time, Michael Powell’s recollections of his early career gives insight into both the director’s life as well as the film industry in which he prospered.

This is Orson Welles – Orson Welles, Peter Bogdanovich (X)

A compilation of conversations between Orson Welles and Peter Bogdanovich, this work explores Welles’s life and views on his intensely varied career, revealing the character of one of if not the largest figure in film history.

Sculpting in Time – Andrei Tarkovsky, Kitty Hunter-Blair (X)

Having completed this writing in the last weeks of his life, Tarkovsky, one of film’s most enigmatic and revered directors, reflects upon his history and his works, divulging inspirations, intentions, thoughts, and memories as he explores his humanistic and creative relationship with life.

Lynch on Lynch – David Lynch, Chris Rodley (O)

The director, whose synthesis of Americana and a surreal form of the uncanny sent shockwaves through the film world, discusses his films, photography, paintings, and musical collaborations from his wholly unique perspective.

Shock Value: A Tasteful Book About Bad Taste – John Waters (O)

Waters, whose daringly transgressive films shocked and mesmerized the American film underground, offers his bitingly sardonic and powerfully subversive perspective on his beginnings as a filmmaker and the career he made for himself.

Werner Herzog: A Guide for the Perplexed – Paul Cronin, Werner Herzog (O)

Through introspective dialogues, Herzog, whose career is as surreal as the mythical tales that surround him, reflects upon his films and creative partners that comprise his revolutionary filmography.

Tsai Ming-Liang and a Cinema of Slowness – Song Hwee Lim (X)

An exploration of cinema through stillness and silence, this work reflects upon the minimalistic and paced films of Tsai Ming-Liang through consideration of their static and hesitating nature.

Ousmane Sembène: The Making of a Militant Artist – Samba Gadjigo (X)

The first true biography of the revolutionary director, this work provides a close look at the humble and secretive director, considering his politically-tinged life and the influences of colonlialism on his works in film and literature.

James Benning – Barbara Pinchler, Claudia Slanar (X)

A biography and critical work on the subversive and influential director whose spanning career is closely tied to the avant-garde tradition.

David Lynch: The Man from Another Place – Dennis Lim (O)

A critical composition, this work offers multiple perspective through which one may view the inscrutable yet deeply resonating films of David Lynch.

Derek Jarman: A Biography – Tony Peake (O)

An artist whose controversial works exposed audiences to sides of society often left unseen, Jarman’s biography paints a portrait of an artist whose humanity and strength found its place in all of his creations.

Apichatpong Weerasethakul – James Quandt (X)

James Quandt offers a compilation of critical writings on Weerasethakul, whose visually-stunning and dreamlike films have established the director as one of the most praised figures of contemporary cinema.



Making Movies – Sydney Lumet (O)

Both a memoir and a guide to the filmmaking process, Making Movies tells of a masterful director who is intimately familiar with the pains and pleasures of creating a masterpiece of cinema.

Hitchcock – Francois Truffaut (O)

A collision of two masterful filmmakers, Hitchcock is composed of a lengthy and deeply penetrating interview conducted by Francois Truffaut as he probes the mind of a director for whom he has utmost reverence.

Who the Devil Made It – Peter Bogdanovich (O)

A collection of interviews with 16 directors spanning 15 years, Bogdanovich provides an illuminating peak into the creative and political processes that underlie the filmmaking industry.

Who the Hell’s in It – Peter Bogdanovich (O)

A reflection on the art of acting from the perspective of an actor and director, Bogdanovich offers loving but critical portraits of the many stars he came to know in his career, telling of their work through both his words and theirs.

Spike Lee’s Gotta Have It – Spike Lee (X)

Lee reflects on the creation and success of She’s Gotta Have It which overcame a shoe-string budget through the sheer creative force of Lee and his partners.

On Directing Film – David Mamet (O)

Mamet, whose career as a playwright, screenwriter, and director gives him a distinct omniscience, offers a comprehensive overview of the entirety of the filmmaking process, from creative conception to directing and editing.

Rebel Without a Crew – Robert Rodriguez (O)

Both a memoir and a guide to low-budget filmmaking, Rodriguez recalls the process behind the creation of his first film, El Mariachi, on an incredibly miniscule budget of $7,000.

Notes on the Cinematographer – Robert Bresson (X)

Comprised of memos Bresson intended for himself, this work offers an aesthetic and philosophical consideration of cinematography as an essential artistic function of cinema.

Essential Deren: Collected Writings on Film – Maya Deren, Bruce R McPherson (X)

One of the most important figures of experimental film, Maya Deren’s writings are collected in this publication, detailing the director’s perspectives on her own films, as well as her theories on film and the avant-garde.

A Critical Cinema (Series) – Scott McDonald (X)

A collection of in-depth interviews with the directors whose works in cinema offer a critique of the form itself, referred to as “critical cinema,” who in turn revolutionized film, revealing the power of cinema as a means to explore the implications of film and filmmaking itself.



The American Cinema: Directors and Directions 1929-1968 – Andrew Sarris (O)

Sarris, who created the auteur theory of directing, methodically moves through the history of film, offering critical writings and lists composed through the lens of the massively influential school of auteur studies.

Easy Riders, Raging Bulls – Peter Biskind (O)

A comprehensive tale culled from interviews with a diverse spread of Hollywood figures, Biskind details the revolution of film that began in the late 60s and lasted through the 70s as young filmmakers dominated Hollywood and permanently changed the medium.

The Name of this Book is Dogme95 – Richard Kelly (X)

As mischievous as its subject matter, this work reports on the creation of Dogme95, a manifesto that fought for a return to sparse and drama-driven film, which in turn penetrated the film world.

The New Biographical Dictionary of Film – David Thomson (O)

Massively comprehensive and deeply opinionated, Thomson, a widely-respected critic offers biographical and critical writings on the figures of films tracing back to its very origin.

The Story of Film – Mark Cousins (X)

Weaving connections between directors and films from multiple decades, this history of film offers a critical analysis of film and its multifaceted relationships, connecting directors to the history of film as well as society as a whole.

The Parade’s Gone By… – Kevin Brownlow (X)

This history of the silent era offers both a critical perspective as well as a deeply insightful oral history culled from interviews with hundreds of figures of the early days of film.

Kino: A History of the Russian and Soviet Film – Jay Leyda (O)

This composition offers a politically oriented history of film produced within Russian and Soviet contexts, beginning before the turn of the century and culminating after the end of World War II.

From Caligari to Hitler: A Psychological History of the German Film – Siegfried Kracauer, Leonardo Quaresima (X)

A landmark composition, this work synthesizes a historical, psychological, and aesthetic perspective in its approach to German film and how the country’s cinema reflected a cultural environment that would ultimately lead to the rise of the Nazis.

Film Art: An Introduction – David Bordwell, Kirstin Thompson (X)

Providing a toolset for both film creation and appreciation, this text methodically goes through all facets of filmmaking, utilizing a diverse range of examples.

L.A. Rebellion: Creating a New Black Cinema – Allyson Field, Jan-Christopher Horak, Jacqueline Najuma Stewart (X)

The first book on the subject, this work details the history of revolutionary L.A. Rebellion, a group made up of African American filmmakers who sought to subvert mainstream cinema in order to better portray their experiences within America.



From Reverence to Rape – Molly Haskell (O)

A classic feminist writing on film, Haskell offers a deeply insightful consideration and criticism of the role of  femininity and women within the art.

What is Cinema? – Andre Bazin (O)

One of the most important voices within film theory, Bazin offers a highly critical approach to film from a theoretical perspective, offering probing writings that remain influential to this day.

Queer Bergman: Sexuality, Gender, and the European Art Cinema – Daniel Humphrey (X)

Humphrey offers a powerful consideration of the queer undertones within Bergman’s works, reflecting on both the films themselves as well as often-ignored statements made by the director alluding to queer themes.

The Aesthetics of Shadow: Lighting and Japanese Cinema – Daisuke Miyao (X)

Reflecting on the role of shadow within Japanese cinema, this work details the aesthetic theory which argued that shadow in film adds depth and mystery, and how such a theory became fundamental to the country’s films.

Psycho-Sexual: Male Desire in Hitchcock, De Palma, Scorsese, and Friedkin – David Greven (O)

Combining psychoanalytics and queer theory, Greven bridges the thematics of the male gaze within Hitchock’s films, and how such a depiction of the American man is recurrent in the works of De Palma, Scorsese, and Friedkin.

Devotional Cinema – Nathaniel Dorsky (X)

A dwelling on the humanistic potential of cinema, the experimental filmmaker Nathaniel Dorsky offers a meditation on what allows film to yield the deeply human connections it draws forth in audiences.

Toms, Coons, Mulattoes, Mammies, and Bucks: An Interpretive History of Blacks in American Films – Donald Bogle (O)

A history of the black figure in film, this work considers the first appearances of African Americans in film, and how such depictions have changed over time, as well as the ways in which they have remained static.

The Material Ghost: Films and their Medium – Gilberto Perez (X)

A massively influential contemporary work, Perez offers a loving portrait of film as both a process of creation and a subject for an audience.

The World Viewed – Stanley Cavell (X)

A careful consideration of film as an art form and its role in society, The World Viewed offers a consideration of film and its role in society, prompting the reader to consider cinema’s lingering figure in their own history.

Film as a Subversive Art – Amos Vogel (X)

Both as historical as it is predictive, this work reflects on the trends of subversive cinema as it subverts societal standards and accustoms audiences to the shifting tides of societal expectation.

The Celluloid Closet: Homosexuality in the Movies – Vito Russo (O)

Spanning from the origins of cinema to the modern film world, Russo divulges the relationship of homosexuality to cinema, exploring how the gay and lesbian figures of cinema have reflected the historical relationship between homosexuality and society.

Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Lacan (But Were Afraid to Ask Hitchcock) – Slavoj Zizek (X)

A collection of essays analyzing the minute details of Hitchock, bringing forth subtle and hidden meanings that explore the psychological and political implications of the great director.

The Cinema of Cruelty: From Bunuel to Hitchcock – Andre Bazin, Francois Truffaut (X)

One of France’s greatest directors, Truffaut, collects the writings of one of France’s greatest film critics, Bazin, as he analyzes and explores the works of six great directors.

Visual and Other Pleasures: (Language, Discourse, Society) – L. Mulvey (X)

Synthesizing film theory, feminism, and psychology, Mulvey creates an impactful and highly critical consideration of cinema and its implications within society.

Art and the Moving Image: A Critical Reader – Tanya Leighton (X)

Analyzing the paradigm shift caused by the introduction of the moving image to contemporary art, this collection of essays explores the initial impact of film and its lasting effects on the art world.



Psychotronic Encyclopedia of Film – Michael Weldon (X)

A classic of bizarro cinema, the Psychotronic Encyclopedia anthologizes the fascinating underbelly of cinema typically only found at the drive-in and the bottom of the bargain bin.

Horizons West – Jim Kitses (O)

An introduction and guide to the Western genre, Horizon’s West explores the uniquely American nature of the Western and how it came to be.

Film at Wit’s End: Eight Avant-Garde Filmmakers – Stan Brakhage (X)

Stan Brakhage, a hero of experimental cinema, provides eight biographies of revolutionary experimental filmmakers, exploring their histories and the works they would create.

Cult Movies – Danny Peary (X)

An anthology and collection of critical writings on the phenomenon of cult movies and their deep connection to our cultural world.