The Oscars celebrate achievement in different aspects of film. Why can’t we celebrate information literacy content in movies? Please let me introduce the InfoSavvy Awards.
For this inaugural list I did not limit to current films or to a single winner. The dates and credits come from the IMDb. Anyway, the Savvies go to:
For Overall Film
Erin Brockovich (2000): Dir. Steven Soderbergh; Written by Susannah Grant; Starring Julia Roberts, Albert Finney, David Brisbin.
Erin shows persistence and resourcefulness in meeting an information need. Information literacy includes such qualities.
Good night, and good luck (2005): Dir. George Clooney; Written by George Clooney & Grant Heslov; Starring David Strathairn, George Clooney, Patricia Clarkson.
This film covers important issues of information access. It takes place during the McCarthy era, but the questions remain relevant today. In the interest of full disclosure, I admit that George Clooney’s involvement is an added bonus.
For Noteworthy Scene
October sky (1999): Dir. Joe Johnston; Written by Homer H. Hickam Jr. (book) & Lewis Colick (screenplay); Starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Chris Cooper, Laura Dern.
Part of the movie has the boys launching their model rockets, failing, refining the design, and launching the improved model. The young rocketeers model the research process.
Soapdish (1991): Dir. Michael Hoffman; Written by Robert Harling (story + screenplay) & Andrew Bergman (screenplay); Starring Sally Field, Kevin Kline, Whoopi Goldberg.
In one scene a soap opera writer is supposed to write for a character who was killed off. The writer researches the soap’s archives and finds out that the character had been decapitated. Though bringing back a killed-off character is common in soaps, bringing back a character who had been decapitated is not. Thus research saves the writer from violating an unwritten rule of soaps.
Now I’ll roll up the red carpet and think of next year’s Savvies. In the meantime, what are some movies where you see information literacy content?