Collection Items

  • Article
    Mental Health Films The films in this presentation, dating mainly from the 1950s, are a striking example of how mental illness—so often sensationalized in Hollywood features—could be handled with considerably more nuance and sensitivity when produced for educational and training purposes. Many of these films were intended for mental health professionals. For example, The Steps of Age (1950) deals with the stresses that some people face upon...
  • Article
    National Film Registry The National Film Registry is a list of films deemed "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant" that are earmarked for preservation by the Library of Congress. These films are not selected as the "best" American films of all time, but rather as works of enduring importance to American culture. They reflect who we are as a people and as a nation. The Librarian of Congress...
  • Article
    Made to Persuade: Advertising and Promotional Films This presentation brings together a wide variety of films deploying diverse narrative approaches but all with the same goal: to sell a product or, sometimes, a person. Motion pictures have been used for promotional purposes practically since the medium was invented; for example, the oldest title in this collection is Admiral Cigarette (Edison, 1897). As "Made to Persuade" makes abundantly clear, the selling tactics...