Reference Sites, Sources, and Connections

Above the Line Movie ResourcesAll about Movies, movie sites, blogs, critics, and resources for more than you could ever want to know about movies. And then some.  I use these resources frequently and recommend them as insightful, informative and entertaining links to learn more about your favorite films, filmmakers, and stars.

An artist I know and love, mi amore.

View the work, know the artist

A place from the everywhere

A place for artists by an artist

ACTORSandCREW is an employment and networking site which serves all entertainment professionals, from actors to editors, costume designers to hair stylists, agents to studio executives, and everyone else. And I am a featured columnist in their magazine.

Rotten Tomatoes is one of the top reference sites I use when conducting research for my movie reviews and a general source for all things movie.  Rotten Tomatoes compiles reviews from top critics from around the net and uses a ‘rotten’ or ‘fresh’ rating system to determine an overall consensus of movies you must see or movies you should avoid as long as possible and save your cash for something else.  The site includes trailers, pictures, and other goodies, and can easily serve as a sprinboard for the casual movie fan or dedicated movie aficionado.

Box Office Mojo is one of those sites that you stumble upon and wonder how your movie world existed before it.  I don’t remember when I discovered them, but they are hands down my favorite site for tracking box office receipts, movie popularity, and for providing an immediate, over-all snapshot of budget-to-sales statistics.  I refer to with every movie review I write and any time I want to find out how well a film did in combined domestic and international sales – of just sitting around flipping through stations and thinking, I wonder if anyone else liked this movie or thinks it stinks as much as I do?

The Internet Movie Database is probably the most essential tool for anyone interested in the movie business.  If you don’t know about it, you should, and if you do know about, then you can attest to the invaluable information they provide.  I don’t know how long they’ve been around but it is clear they have a firm connection with the entertainment industry and rightfully so.  The imdb interface is clean and simple and the ads are not as annoying as some sites. What I like the most about the site is the way in which just about everyone involved in a production are given credit for their work with links that connect their personal and professional affiliations in one place.  And if you’re a filmmaker, you can upload your movie information and create a credible link to your accomplishment.  IMDB provides a one-stop source for cast, crew, log-lines and synopsis, links connecting past, present and future projects, not to mention a nearly inexhaustible supply of facts, trivia, and awards. Every review at Above the Line contains information provided by the Internet Movie Data Base website.

Movie-Vault is an established movie review website with referral links from some of the top websites, newspapers and even a nation-wide television show.  You’ll find over 2,000 reviews, news, movie games and an active community of movie enthusiasts and professionals.  If you need help finding a movie reviews, their extensive search feature offers searches by title, year, director, on-staff reviewer, and just about everything in between.  Their forum contains over 7,000 threads, 170,000 posts, and 10,000 members as of August 2010.  I am just beginning to explore the resources at but plan to frequent the site often.  They’re also on Twitter and Facebook.

Metacritic is a relatively new site for me, but I’ve found myself returning to their helpful, insightful collection of reviews on everything from the latest (as well as earlier) releases in film, video, music, books and games. They proudly proclaim, “Since its inception, Metacritic has provided a cross-section of reviews from a carefully screened group of the most respected critics” and a quick visit to their site is the proof in the pudding, as it were.

MRQE (pronounced “marquee”) the Movie Review Query Engine, is an on-line collection of movie reviews. Founded in 1993, MRQE is a searchable index of all published and available movie reviews, news, interviews, and other material associated to movies. Like Metacritic, I am relatively new to MRQE, but am excited about exploring the site further and incorporating what I learn there into my reviews.

Roger Ebert I have been a long time admirer and follower of movie critic Roger Ebert.  I think my earliest memory of him dates back to 1986 or thereabouts when he co-hosted a show with fellow critic Gene Siskel called, “Siskel and Ebert and The Movies”.  The name was later changed with the times, and then again when Siskel died in 1999.  To be honest, the magic of their frequent disagreements and intellectual bout of wits was never equaled, akin to a band that comes apart when any one member dies or leaves.  I prefer him now as a soloist, a curmudgeon tucked away but no less visible in the hearts and minds of movie fans and fellow critics; the Roger Ebert style of reviews, among many other ventures, remains a barometer for good reviews to this day.  As a freshman in the college of movie reviews, I consider Mr. Ebert an upper classman, a mentor and tutor with a daunting career that is as commendable as it is approachable. I remind myself of Mr. Ebert’s frankness, his professionalism and ever-sharp wit, the gentle reminder in his eyes that he has plenty left to say and will write for as long as he has breath.

Movie Fone I discovered the folks over at MovieFone randomly, as it would seem, while searching for local movies times at the metroplex. The site also offers information, reviews, and other facts about popular movies in theaters, coming soon and on dvd.  You can conduct a search for movie titles, find movie theater showtimes, trailers, reviews and news. is a relatively new destination for everything movies.  I don’t know how long they have actually been on-line but that is what they write in their ‘about us’ section.  I’ve personally found news about current movie runs as well as what’s coming soon to theaters and DVD.  I haven’t used their ‘get movie times’ section but they offer that too. You might recall the talking hand-puppet characters that made Fandango popular, or used your smart phone to receive updates or buy movie tickets.  I pop over to their site from time to time for their reviews or links to additional information. I’m a relatively new user of the fflick site but am enjoying the organization and direct link with Twitter.  Their claim is, “Instant movie reviews from you and your friends – Is that $12 movie ticket worth it? Find out!”.  For the time being I’m stretching my legs over there and will update later.

This site, as they put it, is where movies from free.  The site is pretty slick and includes reviews, news, links to free content and just about everything you can think of that is either directly or indirectly connected to the film industry.  I haven’t spent a lot of time on the site but there is a ton of information and I’ve referenced more than one review during my research jaunts around the net.  Looks promising.


AMC’s Filmcritic movie portal is probably one of the original sites I visited before I started my blog.  The site is well-organized, easy to navigate, and the front-end provides easy access to top reviews, new releases, in-theaters, and just about anything you might be interested in when it comes to your movie diet.  They have an interesting ratings system that compares critics, users, and ‘you’ if you subscribe, providing a quick-look if you’re in a hurry or have a short attention span.  I’ve referenced quite a few of their reviews and collected articles during my research.

There are many other sites and individuals that I refer to when researching and writing my reviews.  I will update this section often as time permits and my net stumbles provide.


19 Responses to Reference Sites, Sources, and Connections

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  6. family guy adult swim episodes says:

    I tend not to leave many responses, however after looking at a few of the
    comments on Reference Sites, Sources, and Connections | Above the Line.
    I do have a couple of questions for you if you don’t mind. Could it be just me or do a few of these responses appear like they are written by brain dead individuals? 😛 And, if you are posting on additional online sites, I’d like to
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    • rorydean says:

      Hey family guy adult swim episodes, I’m always conflicted about these sorts of comments from these sorts of addresses, URLs and emails that don’t look quite right. That being said, I’ll respond just the same as I have thirty three seconds of time to spare between airing out cobwebs on the shelf of my mind. Responses written by, as you put it, “brain dead individuals” most certainly. Random spam attempts and hack jobs from people that don’t have anything better to do, indeed. If you just look around this site or do a general search online you’d be surprised what you might find.

  7. carissa_alonzo says:

    {edited} Violence and sex displayed in television and movies creates adverse mental effects on some people. For example, the popularity of The Hunger Games seems based on the phenomenon that audiences were attracted to the notion of government control and abuse. Obviously a huge box office success only furthers populate this idea. Shows that is able to entertain the target audience while intriguing others as well as their popularity is expected to raise inside the coming years.

    • rorydean says:

      Well, I think this has been a topic of discussion ever since the inception of movies when the earliest stories were very often a portrayal of everyday events, persons and places. I would agree movies and entertainment very often elicits an emotional and psychological reaction, both during the experience and afterwards, especially when people come together to discuss it. I haven’t written about Hunger Games yet but it is forth coming – personally I’m not a fan. That being said, I would be interested to hear your thoughts on my article as well as the post here on regarding Christopher Nolan’s exploration of the whole notion of speaking directly to audience fears and expectations for better or for worse. Thanks for commenting.

  8. yost says:

    Thanks for expressing your ideas. I would also like to mention that video games have been evolving and the line between movies and electronic arts is blurring. Today’s technology and inventions have created the most realistic and interactive games in history and movies are right behind them.

    These types of movies are someday going to merge the interactive process to a point of reviving the old arcades of the 80s. You wait and see!

    Thanks for your posts.

    • rorydean says:

      Hi Yost –
      Always appreciate your point of view. I know we’ve discussed this idea before and I promise, one of these days I’m going to write an article about it. I keep thinking of movies like Total Recall (the remake) which you can find my review here I mean this is such an amazing film in so many ways, not to mention I found it to be a great remake because it didn’t fall victim to what a lot of filmmakers do – that is to either stray too far from the original or somehow try and “fix it” or stick too close to the original without any real point to it (like Van Sant’s remake of Psycho, for instance). You are on to something, the idea of video games and movies merging into a whole new kind of entertainment experience. Whether it goes to arcades of yester year or not, who knows. Thanks as always for visiting!

  9. allie says:

    Looks like you need to update your pages. I keep meaning to send you some suggestions. Maybe this month. Maybe not.

  10. apa k. says:

    Thanks for visiting my site. I don’t ever have enough time. Do you? I sit down to read and that ends up with me writing and I never get back to where I started. What is the system? Oh well, thanks for visiting. I still don’t like Total Rekall. I guess I only in love with Arny..sigh

  11. lilian says:

    Saved as a favorite, I love your website!

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