Links to Other Resources
“Why haven’t you reviewed this or that movie?” is easily one of the most frequently asked question I receive. Alas, the answer is always the same: There’s only so much I can do. Every week I post only a handful of pieces; the vast majority of films always fall through the cracks, and always will. Even if I wanted to review everything that came down the pike — which, frankly, I don’t — I couldn’t begin to do so.
If you’ve tried the search box and the other search features and haven’t found the movie you’re looking for, chances are you’ll have to look elsewhere for more info. But where?
This page represents the start of an answer to that question. Like all resources, including my work on this site, the websites listed below should be used discerningly; each of them has its limitations, and nobody is right or even helpful all the time. I can’t endorse everything on these sites, which may include problematic content or reflect a range of religious, moral or critical opinions at odds with the principles informing this site.
That said, there’s a lot of good information and insight out there. Used critically, these sites are a good place to start looking for information about movies. Which resources are likely to be the most help to a particular reader in a question each reader must answer for himself.
Decent Films Links
The website of the official film review body of the US Catholic bishops. The site features full-length and capsule reviews for an extensive library of reviews encompassing thousands of films from all decades of cinema, evaluating films for “artistic merit and moral suitability” and rating them for age appropriateness (read more). The sheer breadth of coverage now available at the USCCB website, particularly with respect to older films, makes it one of the most reliably useful online resources for gauging the potential interest level for an unfamiliar title.
The Faith & Film Critics Circle, of which I am a member, is a fellowship of critics applying Christian perspectives to film through reviews and discussion, seeking to encourage revealing and intelligent dialogue about the human experience. Its online home is hosted by the Matthews House Project, dedicated to developing a place in which the intersections of faith and culture can be explored.
Billed as “the best place on the Web for a discussion of Christian faith, the arts, and much more,” Arts & Faith represents a sizeable online community engaged in ongoing discussion about current and older movies, music, literature, and other arts and media, as well as religion, politics, science, sports, and more. Information, analysis, arguments, tagents, banter, general foolishness, insight, etc. is all here in abundance. Arts & Faith is Christian-operated and Christian by charter, but participation is open to all, and a wide array of opinions and points of view are represented and cross-examined, making for stimulating, often insightful discussion.
Designed especially to give parents direct information on the content of films their kids want to see, Screen It! offers incredibly detailed information on virtually every conceivable potentially problematic element in thousands of films, down to specific word counts on obscene or profane dialogue, descriptions of violent or sexual content, documentation of drug, alcohol or tobacco usage, even issues like “imitative behavior” and “tense family scenes.” A husband-and-wife operation, Screen It! is not religious either by charter or otherwise, but the site has been responsive to religious concerns, giving due attention to profane use of sacred names and religious words.
There have been a lot of changes at CT Movies, but it’s still one of the best places to go for solid film writing from the vantage point of Christian faith.
General Film Links
This is it: the movie site par excellence. Monstrously huge, robustly searchable, this repository of movie data is invaluable when looking for information on a particular film, filmmaker, genre, studio, or practically anything else film-related you might be interested in. Find out what other movies you’ve seen that familiar face in before, or what projects have teamed up particular filmmakers. Or browse links to reviews and other outside commentary on particular films. It’s all at the IMDb.
A unique film-review site that collects scores of critical opinions from all over on any given film and averages them together. Films with an approval rating of 60% or better are “fresh”; those below that level are “rotten.” Rotten Tomatoes also provides pull quotes and links to reviews, so you can read individual critics, or simply scan the page to get a sense of how the critical community felt about the film.
Founded in 1997, the OFCS is the premier international organization of film critics who post their printed movie reviews exclusively or primarily online. Hosted by Rotten Tomatoes, the OFCS website provides links by film or by critic to thousands of reviews from almost 100 critics.