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Research Guides

CIN472: Local Film Cultures

Tips for Building your Search

Choosing your Search Terms

Enter search terms on separate lines e.g., enter title of film on the top line, director's last name below, so as to articulate your search request. 

  • Quotations marks (search for specific phrases or names)

    • "Film Festivals", "Revue Cinema""Movie Theatre"Rocky Horror Picture Show

    • Careful of spelling!!  Scroll down to Tips on using OR for Theatre VS Theater

  • Asterisk / Wildcard * (search for root word with different endings)

    • Canad* =  Canada, Canada's, Canadian, Canadian's, Canadians, Canadiana


Combine your Search Terms

Pair up search terms using Boolean operators (AND, OR, NOT) to instruct databases to pull different combinations to narrow or widen the search results: 

  • AND (narrows your search)

    • "Reel Asian" AND Toronto 

    • "Music Hall" AND Danforth  

    • "Film Festival" AND distribution AND Canad* 

  • OR (widens your search)

    • film OR "motion pictures" OR movies OR cinem

    • "Movie Theatre" OR "Movie Theater"

    • TIFF OR "Toronto International Film Festival"

Subject Headings in Library Catalogue

Search using Subject Headings

  1. Click on the UTL Catalogue link below to access Advanced Search
  2. Enter one of the phrases below exactly as it appears in the Search Box (or any of the other Subject Headings found below)
  3. Change the drop-down menu from Anywhere to "Subject"

UTL Catalogue Advanced Search 


Subject Headings

  • Motion Picture Theaters
    • Be aware that this subject heading is the American Spelling
    • Click "Search within" below the search bar on the results page and search "Toronto" or "Ontario"
    • Search subject heading "Motion picture theaters--Ontario--Toronto"
  • Motion Picture Industry
  • Motion Picture Audiences
  • Film Festivals
  • Distribution
  • Motion Pictures 
  • Motion Picture Producers And Directors

Search using Business Names

Search as above; use quotation marks to direct the database to search for particular words in a particular order and you may want to add Toronto, Ontario or Canada to the search if it is a popular theatre name.

Be careful of the spelling of the word "theatre". US newspapers or magazines may use theater as its spelling even if it is a business name. Run more than one search. 

  • "Kingsway Theatre"
  • "Revue Cinema" AND Toronto
  • "Reel Asian" "Film Festival" AND Toronto

Lists to get you started - Toronto Cinemas and Film Festivals

Remember Wikipedia can be a great source to find industry names, terminology and events, but focus on using it as launch pad and use those search terms in UofT or web-based databases. Google Scholar can be useful, but the filters to narrow your search results are limited.