Favorite reel librarian posts of 2020

Exploring my favorite posts from the past year

Happy New Year! I do hope 2021 will ultimately be better, safer, and healthier than the pandemic dumpster fire year that was 2020! But before launching into the new year, I wanted to take a quick look back at favorite posts from the past year. First, I will highlight the most viewed posts I wrote and published this past year, and then I will go into detail about my own personal favorite posts from this past year. As it turned out, there is some overlap between the two lists (unplanned, because I made my list of my own personal favorite posts first). I hope you enjoy these posts — even if they are only momentary distractions!

Viewer’s choice: Top 5 viewed posts published in 2020

  1. Law librarian failure in ‘Philadelphia’ (1993) (published June 2020)
  2. Spring training and special collections in ‘Major League’ (1989) (published April 2020)
  3. Reel librarians and archivists in 16 sci-fi films (published March 2020)
  4. A reel librarian returns in ‘Major League II’ (1994) (published May 2020)
  5. 5 movies featuring Black reel librarians in major roles (published July 2020)

Librarian’s choice: Top 5 personal favorite posts published in 2020

For my own personal favorite posts I wrote and published this past year, I will list the posts in chronological order.

From March 2020: Reel librarians and archivists in 16 sci-fi films

This post was fun to put together, and the idea for it germinated from updating my Genres & Themes page and thinking about additional genres I could highlight. There are so many reel librarians and archivists in sci-fi films, it was actually kind of hard to narrow down to just 16 for this post! I also enjoyed that it’s a “listmaking” post that goes a bit deeper, in that after I narrowed down the list, I noted three major trends of the reel librarian roles in these sci-fi films: HeroesHelpers, and Hindrances.

Read the post: Reel librarians and archivists in 16 sci-fi films

Reel Librarians | Screenshot from 'Doctor Strange' (2016)
A closeup of reel librarian and sorcerer Wong from ‘Doctor Strange’ (2016)

From April 2020: Spring training and special collections in ‘Major League’ (1989)

I’ve always had a soft spot for Major League — and it appears that many of you do, too! In particular, I’ve also always had a soft spot for Rene Russo’s portrayal as Lynn, a reel librarian, and how she proudly states, “In two years I put together one of the best special collection departments in the country.

As I remember it, this post took me quite a while to put together, particularly figuring out how to structure it, since Lynn is a major character throughout the film. I ended up using a baseball-themed series of headings, starting off with “First base” and ending up with a “Home run.” Cheesy? YES! That’s how I roll here on this Reel Librarians blog. 😉

Read the post: Spring training and special collections in ‘Major League’ (1989)

Tom Berenger and Rene Russo have a showdown in her library, in a scene from Major League
Tom Berenger and Rene Russo have a showdown in her library, in a scene from Major League (1989)

From July 2020: 5 movies featuring Black reel librarians in major roles

I put this post together in the midst of this past summer of racial reckoning, after I had participated (with a face mask on, of course) in a regional “Educators for Black Lives Matter” protest and march. I kept thinking about what I, a White woman and librarian, could do in my own little sphere of the interwebs, to highlight that Black Lives Matter and that Black representation of librarianship on screen matters. It’s only one post, I know, but after recently re-reading it, it’s a post that has helped inspire me to do more in the coming year to highlight on this blog more reel librarians of color. I will go into much more detail about this in my next post!

Read the post: 5 movies featuring Black reel librarians in major roles

Men of Honor Because They Said I Couldn’t Have It” video, uploaded by Jonathan F., Standard YouTube License

From August 2020: ‘Drop Dead Gorgeous’ librarian

This post just made me laugh putting it together! I mean, how could you NOT laugh when you’ve got a deadpan reel librarian spouting lines like:

Didn’t even get to keep my damn tiara.”

“Lutefisk is codfish that’s been salted and soaked in lye for a week or so.It’s best with lots of butter.

I often mix it up here on the blog, sprinkling in some lighter posts amidst the longer and more analytical posts. This post is a good example of the former.

Read the post: ‘Drop Dead Gorgeous’ librarian

Reel librarian from 'Drop Dead Gorgeous' (1999)
Reel librarian from ‘Drop Dead Gorgeous’ (1999)

From December 2020: Comparing library scenes between the original book and movie version of ‘The Da Vinci Code’

This post is one that I didn’t plan, and had not been thinking about at all. In fact, I had forgotten completely about the library research scene in this movie. Rewatching the movie reminded me of the library research scene in the book, and thus, an idea for this post was born. Some posts I plan and work on for ages, while others come spur-of-the-moment. This post is definitely a good example of the latter!

I think I enjoyed re-reading this post because I felt that my snarky sense of humor comes through in the end result. Did I chuckle at how many times I was able to slip in variations of the word “mansplaining” into the post? OF COURSE. 😉

Read the post: Comparing library scenes between the original book and movie version of ‘The Da Vinci Code’

Screenshot from 'The Da Vinci Code' (2006)
Mansplainer alert!

Did you have any personal favorite posts from this past year? Please share!

Sources used

3 favorite Christmas movies starring reel librarians

Enjoy both the holiday spirit AND the reel librarians!

Happy holidays, y’all! I hope you all are enjoying a safe and socially distanced holiday season. Anyone bedazzled any face masks yet? (Goodness, that was definitely a “only in 2020” kind of sentence, wasn’t it?!) 😉 I was reviewing my “Holiday round-up with reel librarians, 2019 update” post, and I realized that I had some personal favorites in there… so why not revisit a few?! I hope y’all enjoy both the holiday spirit AND the reel librarians!

Reel Librarians | Holiday logo

#3: The Twelve Trees of Christmas (2013, TV movie)

This is a Lifetime TV movie, yes. And it is fun and cheesy and everything nice, so it is definitely on Santa’s good list! This TV movie is not only Christmas-themed but ALSO boasts a reel librarian as the lead character. Lindy Booth, who also played a librarian on “The Librarians” TV series, stars as children’s librarian Cheri Jameson. The library-centric plot — let’s save the local public library! — also includes several other librarians and library staff characters, so you get to see different kinds of library workers and all the different nooks and crannies of the library.

We also hear Cheri describe her library science education and how she realized she wanted to become a librarian:

“I spent all my spare time out at the library and decided to major in library sciences. […] I got this summer job as a library intern, tutoring kids and working on this literacy program. […] I found my calling.”

Related posts: Twelve reel lessons learned from ‘The Twelve Trees of Christmas’

Reel Librarians | Screenshot from 'The Twelves Trees of Christmas' (2013, TV)
Screenshot from The Twelve Trees of Christmas (2013, TV movie)

#2: It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)

I know, I know, I’ve written about this movie’s “30 seconds of infamy” when it comes to how it depicts reel librarians and our nightmarish fate if we do not marry. We become spinster librarians, the horror!!! 😦 But! This movie is a classic, and a classic holiday movie, and it is, indeed, a wonderful movie in all other aspects. This classic movie makes my Top 3 list of Christmas movie favorites — as well as my “Hall of Shame” list for reel librarian portrayals.

Here’s the infamous line from Clarence, the angel, revealing Mary’s fate to George:

“You’re not going to like it, George. She’s an old maid. She’s just about to close up the library!”

Related posts: ‘It’s a wonderful’… stereotype? ; Revisiting ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ ; All hail Mary? ; The Spinster Librarian ; Best librarian films by decade, Part I: 1910s – 1950s ; Librarian as nightmare

Screenshot from 'It's a Wonderful Life' is in the public domain
Screenshot from ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ is in the public domain

#1: Desk Set (1957)

How could anything beat out the classic Christmastime movie, It’s a Wonderful Life?! And yet, my favorite Christmas movie that stars a reel librarian is the effervescent and intelligent comedy Desk Set (1957), starring Katharine Hepburn as Bunny Watson, the head librarian at a TV network’s research library, and Spencer Tracy as an efficiency expert. The film takes place around the Christmas holidays and includes a very funny — and VERY boozy — office Christmas party in the research department library. What’s not to love? Christmas and cocktails and reel librarians all in one movie!

There are also sooooo many relatable librarian moments in this movie. Here’s a sample quote between Bunny Watson, the head librarian, and Ruthie, the newest reference librarian.

BunnyYou’re certainly ambitious.

RuthieWell, it was hard enough getting this job, and I want to keep it.

BunnyJust get to learn the reference library, and I’ll recommend you for a raise after the first of the year.

Related posts: Comparing two ‘Desk Sets’ (and I don’t mean furniture) ; Revisiting favorites | ‘Comparing two desk sets,’ Jan. 26, 2012

A Very Drunk Katharine Hepburn” video uploaded by I am an angel…….an angel of love is licensed under a Standard YouTube license.

Any other personal faves of yours? Please share!

Sources used

  • Desk Set. Dir. Walter Lang. Perf. Katharine Hepburn, Spencer Tracy, Gig Young, Joan Blondell, Dina Merrill. 20th Century Fox, 1957.
  • It’s a Wonderful Life. Dir. Frank Capra. Perf. James Stewart, Donna Reed, Lionel Barrymore, Thomas Mitchell, Henry Travers. RKO, 1946.
  • The Twelve Trees of Christmas. Dir. Michael DeCarlo. Perf. Lindy Booth, Robin Dunne, Shauna MacDonald, Melanie Brown, Casper Van Dien. Chesler/Perlmutter Productions, 2013.

Comparing library scenes between the original book and movie version of ‘The Da Vinci Code’

The movie version is 100% codswallop. I do not think this is a spoiler.

I hope you are all as safe and healthy as you can be during this pandemic holiday season. I, for one, find myself watching a lot of crappy movies and TV lately — you know the kind, the ones you can have on in the background and watch with one eye and one-quarter of your brain while you do other things. I find this soothing to my emotional and mental state during these pandemic times. And this is how I happened to recently rewatch the movie version of The Da Vinci Code, which was released in 2006. The film is based on Dan Brown’s 2003 bestseller novel. The film, directed by Ron Howard, stars Tom Hanks as the intrepid researcher and incessant mansplainer Robert Langdon, Audrey Tautou as French police cryptologist Sophie Neveu, and Sir Ian McKellen as British historian Sir Leigh Teabingas.

Here’s a trailer for the movie:

“The Da Vinci Code (2006) Official Trailer 1 – Tom Hanks Movie” uploaded by Movieclips Classic Trailers, Standard YouTube License

Both the book and the movie caused lots of controversy and were banned in several countries for its depiction of the Catholic Church and various conspiracy theories (see my 2017 post about banned reel librarian movies). I had read the book when it came out — a fact my loving spouse does not let me forget — and I chuckled at how McKellen described the experience of reading it:

“While I was reading the book, I believed it entirely. Clever Dan Brown twisted my mind convincingly. But when I put it down, I thought, ‘What a load of… potential codswallop.'”

From The Guardian, 2005

You said it, McKellen!

The movie version is 100% codswallop. I do not think this is a spoiler.

Research scene in the movie version

I had honestly forgotten about the story’s library research scene until I rewatched it. (And then I got cranky, because it meant I had to pause what I was doing and ACTUALLY start paying attention to the movie. All for the love of reel librarians! I often watch bad movies so you do not have to. 😉 )

At 1 hour and 40 minutes into the 2 1/2 hour-long film, Langdon and Neveu are in London on the quest to find the Holy Grail. As you do. Langdon then says these magical words:

I have to get to a library, fast.

Robert Langdon says, "I have to get to a library, fast." in 2006's The Da Vinci Code

And… then the film slows down as they find themselves sitting on a bus. Having nothing to mansplain about, Robert complains about the wait.

Langdon: We’re at least a half hour to Chelsea Library. If we’re going to help Leigh, that’s too long.

Neveu looks around the bus and spots a young man with a cell phone.

Langdon: Where are you going?

Neveu: Getting you a library card.

I had to groan aloud at this one and roll my eyes. OK, Sophie.

She then flirts with the young man, and Robert borrows the cell phone.

Langdon: Let’s see if we can access the database on this.

Next, Langdon pulls up a search engine called quicksolver.net — a search engine is NOT the same thing as a database, y’all!!!, and yes, I yelled this at the screen — and narrates what he is thinking and typing in:

“In London lies a knight a Pope interred.” Compounding keywords: London, knight, pope, grail.

A closeup on keywords in 2006's The Da Vinci code
You don’t need capital letters when you type in keywords. Pro tip, y’all.

Langdon seems confused by the search results. The young man glances at the screen, and says:

There’s your problem, mate. It’s your basic linguistic coincidence. See, keywords keep coming up with the writings of some bloke named Alexander Pope.

Closeup of search results on the cell phone
Closeup of search results

That provides a clue to Langdon, and they’re off and running to the next locale.

My random thoughts after watching this scene:

  • Who says things like “Compounding keywords” or “It’s your basic linguistic coincidence”? Oh, that’s right, NO ONE. Not even librarians.
  • There’s no other library closer than a half-hour bus ride away? That seems unlikely to me in a city like London. (If there are any London dwellers reading this blog post, please leave a comment and let me know if this is realistic or not!)
  • Is Chelsea Library a real library in London? (I looked that up and yes: It’s a library in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, and it’s located at Chelsea Old Town Hall, London, King’s Road.)
  • I appreciate the focus in this scene is on keywords and how they’re critical to research success. That does ring true for me.
  • Again, search engines (e.g. Google) are not the same things as library databases. I have to teach students this all the time, and go through examples of when it’s a good strategy to try search engines vs. when it’s better to try searching in library databases. You would think a professor and professional mansplainer like Robert Langdon would know the difference.
  • It was fun to see a young man teach Langdon something for once!

My husband also asked me if I was having fun watching this scene, considering how many times I had to pause the movie and yell at the screen. (Side discussion: Is it possible to have fun watching this tedious a film? 😉 ) But I don’t actually have a problem with the concept of using a cell phone for research. I use my cell phone for research all the time. But the movie makes an either/or fallacy, that cell phones replace libraries and librarians, instead of enhancing access to research or library resources. Sometimes, you really do need to go to a library to access specific resources; sometimes you need the guidance of an actual librarian; and sometimes, doing a quick search on your cell phone will suffice for your real-life research needs. You CAN have it both ways. Alas, there is no room for such nuance in this movie. More’s the pity.

This research scene on the bus lasts 3 minutes. There is no actual librarian present for this research scene, although one could argue that the young man on the bus serves a similar function in this scene. This movie lands in the Class V category of films, which are films with no identifiable librarians and/or archivists, although there is a research scene and/or scenes set in libraries.

Research scene in the original book

Now let’s revisit the research scene in Dan Brown’s original book. Langdon and Neveu do visit the King’s College Library (not the Chelsea Library) in chapters 92 and 95, because there is a special religious research database available in that specific library. (Side note: There are still lots of specialized databases that are only available to use on-site in a library. Brown gets this detail right.) Librarian Pamela Gettum — a librarian gets a name, y’all! — helps them with the database, and she shares that they get a lot of Grail hunters at the library. Search results that come up with Sir Isaac Newton lead the researchers to the Alexander Pope clue.

There are 105 chapters plus an epilogue in the original book, so the library research scene happens quite late in the book’s storyline. In the movie version, however, there is still almost an hour of screen time remaining after the research scene!

Revisiting the purpose of the librarian character in the book, she gets to be helpful, plus she has the opportunity to inject a bit of humor into the story by (gently) making fun of all the Grail hunters that pass through the library. There is no room for such humor in the research scene on the bus.

So why did the library scene in the book get switched out for a cell phone in the movie? According to the IMDb.com Trivia page for this movie, the director Ron Howard actually DID want to film inside the King’s College Library, at the main Maughan Library’s dodecagonal reading room. However, the college did not agree to close off a section of its library for the scene to be filmed.

Here’s what we missed out on:

The Maughan Library” by Colin, CC BY-SA 4.0 license

Yeah…. a cell phone is just not the same.

Behold:

On left: “Maughan Library Round Reading Room” by The wub, CC BY SA 4.0 license.

Is that why even the name of the library got changed in the final research scene? Remember, Langdon mentions “Chelsea Library” when they’re on the bus, not “Maughan Library” or “King’s College Library.” I’m thinking that library name change was Ron Howard’s revenge?

What are your thoughts on this library and librarian switcheroo in the movie version of The Da Vinci Code? Had you also forgotten about the research scene on the bus? Please leave a comment and share!

And please take care out there, and make sure you remember your face mask, hand sanitizer… and cell phone, in case you need to do some quick research. 😉

Sources used:

Law books and research in ‘Marshall’ (2017)

“You’d better start reading then.”

Today is the premiere date for Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, the final film role of Chadwick Boseman’s brilliant and all-too-short career. Boseman, who plays trumpet player Levee, and his co-star Viola Davis, who plays the title role of Ma Rainey, are getting rave reviews. I still get emotional whenever I think of Boseman’s passing. He died of colon cancer on August 28, 2020, at the young age of 43. By all accounts, he was a wonderful, caring, and dedicated man who was always giving back and paying it forward. Even though Boseman’s career was short — his first television role was in 2003 and his first film role was in 2008 — his list of film credits (only 15 total movies!) includes stellar turns playing iconic and inspiring Black men, including Jackie Robinson in 42 (2013), James Brown in Get On Up (2014), and of course, T’Challa, King of Wakanda, in Black Panther (2018). Boseman’s role as Thurgood Marshall in Marshall (2017) also joins this list.

Here’s a trailer for the movie:

“Marshall Trailer #1 (2017)” by Movieclips Trailers, Standard YouTube License

Marshall was the first African American Supreme Court Justice, serving on the U.S. Supreme Court from 1967 through 1991. Before that, he was a lawyer for the NAACP, criss-crossing the United States to defend people of color and work on cases focusing on racial prejudice. As NAACP chief counsel for Brown v. Board of Education, Thurgood successfully argued that case in 1954 before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Marshall, directed by Reginald Hudlin, does not delve into Marshall’s more well-known cases or his tenure as a Supreme Court Justice. Rather, we get to know the measure of the man during his early career and how Marshall also helped inspire others to join the fight for racial and social justice. The film is set in 1941 and focuses on an early case in Marshall’s career, State of Connecticut v. Joseph Spell, a case in which a Black chauffeur (played by Sterling K. Brown) was accused of raping Eleanor Strubing (played by Kate Hudson), a wealthy White woman. Josh Gad co-stars as real-life attorney Sam Friedman, who worked as local counsel alongside Marshall. Friedman, a Jewish lawyer, had been working in insurance cases, and this trial marked his first experience as a criminal defender. Friedman had to serve as the case’s lead counsel because the Connecticut judge had forbidden Marshall from speaking during the trial.

These screenshots below depict the scene in which Marshall introduces Friedman to the press.

NAACP lawyer Thurgood Marshall (Chadwick Boseman) introuces Sam Friedman (Josh Gad) to the press, in a scene from Marshall (2017)
NAACP lawyer Thurgood Marshall (Chadwick Boseman) introuces Sam Friedman (Josh Gad) to the press, in a scene from Marshall (2017)
A birds-eye view of Marshall and Friedman in front of reporters
A birds-eye view of Marshall and Friedman in front of reporters

Almost 30 minutes into the movie, Marshall tells Friedman he has to start preparing for the criminal case.

Marshall: You say you’ve never tried a criminal case before, right?

Friedman nods.

Marshall then takes out a stack of law books out of his case and puts them on the desk. The camera focuses on the stack of books, and their titles are plainly visible, as seen in the screenshot below.

Marshall: You’d better start reading then. You’ve got one month.

Law books from Marshall's bag.
“You’d better start reading then.”

Although short, this scene is impressive because it shows how prepared and professional Marshall is — he’s got a stack of law books in his case! — and how he is also prepared to help mentor a colleague. The scene also reinforces how research is the backbone of legal justice. And those law books do look realistically worn and used.

But let’s take a closer look, shall we?

Here are the titles of the legal tomes that Marshall pulls out, the ones he wants Friedman to study for their upcoming criminal case:

  • A Concise Restatement of Torts, Second Edition, is about civil law, and it wasn’t published until 1965.
  • There are two volumes of Wigmore on Evidence from the McNaughton Revision series, which were not published until 1961. As the film’s IMDb.com Goofs page states: “Evidentiary law discussed in Wigmore applies in both criminal and civil cases, so Friedman, a trial lawyer, would already be familiar with it.
  • The tan volume on top is Volume 308 of the United States Reports, which contains all the U.S. Supreme Court opinions from October 1939.

None of these titles are exclusively about criminal law. Three of the four volumes that Marshall pulls out of his case in 1941 had not been published yet. And the other volume is about the U.S. Supreme Court, which would have no bearing on a criminal case in a state court. Propmaster FAIL.

I appreciate the focus on research in this scene from Marshall, but it’s best to get the details right, especially for a cinematic close-up. Maybe next time, consult with a law librarian?

Ultimately, Marshall is a fine example of Boseman’s acting talent, and the film does justice to Marshall’s career and legacy. You can read more about the real-life case here in this Smithsonian Magazine article and here in this article with Friedman’s daughter, Lauren Friedman. The movie itself lands in the Class V category of reel librarian films, the category for movies that include research and/or library scenes but no actual librarians.

Have you seen Marshall? Do you also tear up when thinking about Chadwick Boseman? Are you planning on watching his final film, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom? Please leave a comment and share!

Sources used:

A buffet of must-read articles about libraries, librarians, and pop culture

What I’ve enjoyed reading the past few weeks

It has been an… intense? exhausting? exhilarating? (go ahead and insert your own superlative adjective here)… couple of weeks, to say the least. My energy has been depleted, y’all. But while I have been trying to distract myself from the news and vote-tallying and current political events here in the United States, I have been enjoying some really interesting articles about libraries and reel librarians and pop culture, so I thought it would be a good moment to share them with you all. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did!

“Step Inside The Museum of Obsolete Library Science” from The Met

This post, published last month, was written by John Lindaman, Manager of Technical Services at Thomas J. Watson Library. The Thomas J. Watson Library is the central research library of The Metropolitan Museum of Art. (I had to look that up. Cuz I’m a librarian, y’all, and I practice what I preach.) This article made me chuckle all the way through. As a kid, I grew up happily helping out in my mother’s school library, and as a teen, I volunteered to help catalog resources at my local public library when they were converting from the physical card catalog to an online system (I really was meant to become a librarian myself, wasn’t I?!), so I recognized a LOT of the obsolete library technology and supplies featured here in this article. Also, be sure to savor the witty captions on all the photos.

Beyond the chuckles, there is a point to this article:

There’s a popular misconception that librarians as a profession are conservative. Not politically conservative, but literally conservative—wanting to keep old stuff. Actually, nothing could be further from the truth—we are often on the cutting edge of using new technologies, and always looking for the most efficient, up-to-date way to help our patrons. […] We are forward thinking, technology-savvy, and driven to find the most modern way possible to fulfill our patrons’ needs. However, the dirty little secret is that sometimes the old stuff, while no longer useful, is actually cool.

This made me think about the central conflict in the classic reel librarian comedy, 1957’s Desk Set, when an efficiency expert, played by Spencer Tracy, installs a room-sized computer in a TV network’s research library, headed by Katharine Hepburn. Who is more needed: the librarians, or the computer? Spoiler: That’s a logical fallacy. The answer, of course, is the unwritten third option: BOTH. Librarians have always used technology, and we keep learning and investing in new technologies that help us do our job better, and help us connect with our patrons and communities.

Related posts: Comparing two ‘Desk Sets’ (and I don’t mean furniture) ; Revisiting favorites | ‘Comparing two desk sets,’ Jan. 26, 2012

“These Animated Shows Defy Library Stereotypes” from I Love Libraries

This article was published in August 2020 and written by Burkely Hermann, who also writes the blog Libraries in Popular Culture. I agree with Hermann’s opening statement, as it also applies to me and how I often think about librarians and libraries in pop culture:

When people think about librarians and libraries, they may point to films, live-action TV shows, or even novels. However, one area is often missed: animation.

So Hermann remedies that by highlighting stereotype-defying librarian characters in a couple of current animated series, Cleopatra in Space (streaming on Peacock) and She-Ra and the Princesses of Power (streaming on Netflix). These are two streaming services that I do not currently subscribe to (there are so many! I had to stop myself after subscribing to Amazon Prime, HBO, and Acorn), but I will definitely keep an eye out for these series! I have also added these series to my TV shows list.

Related posts: Bonus reel librarian love on ALA’s I Love Libraries blog

“Libraries as Safe Places in Horror Cinema” posts from Behind the Couch

I’ve really been enjoying reading the posts from the Behind the Couch movie blog, written by James Gracey, a Library Assistant at the British Film Institute, located in London. (Does that sound like a dream job, or what?! I’ve often daydreamed of being a librarian at the Margaret Herrick Library, the library of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in Hollywood.) The two recent “Libraries as Safe Places in Horror Cinema” posts delve into the classic horror movie Carrie (1976), and the lesser-known horror movie Ginger Snaps: Unleashed (2004).

I really enjoy the deep-dive into thoughtful analysis, and not just about what’s onscreen. Here is an example from the Ginger Snaps post:

By providing users a welcoming and peaceful space to spend time – browsing, reading, learning or simply reflecting or sheltering – libraries also act as a safe place, providing a lifeline, especially for the socially isolated and vulnerable within our communities. 

I also find the premise of using libraries as safe spaces within horror movies just a really interesting one, and an idea to explore more here on this blog. In fact, you could argue that my previous film analysis post, featuring the short — but vital! — library research scene in Jennifer’s Body (2009) is included in this vein. It’s also intriguing to think about the flip side, of libraries being used purposely as UNsafe spaces within horror movies… the ultimate betrayal?! 😉

Related posts: Paranormal research in ‘Jennifer’s Body’ (2009)

Have y’all come across some interesting articles and posts about libraries, librarians, and pop culture recently, too? Please share them in the comments!

Sources used