or, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Fear and Loathing at a Public Library Reference Desk

Reference Question of the Week – 8/24/08

   August 30th, 2008 Brian Herzog

Attack of the B Movies posterHere's an example of what should be a simple question needing a round-about path to find the answer.

A patron came in asking for help finding movie listings. He'd heard there was a special showing at the local Showcase Cinema, called "attack of the" something, and he wanted to go. It's part of a series the theater is doing, showing certain movies on Thursday nights for $5.

But when he was at the movie theater, the employees wouldn't tell him what was showing on Thursdays. They said they didn't know. So he came to the library.

Usually for quick movie listings I check Yahoo Movies, but that didn't mention this special Thursday series. Also, all the phone numbers I could find for the theater were just their recorded show times, which likewise did not mention the special Thursday movies.

So the next step was to search the internet for "showcase lowell thursday attack." The first listing was the flickr photo shown above, which the patron was excited to see.

The second listing was "Attack of the B Movies" Series Playing at Select National..., an article about this series. It mentioned the information came from the National Amusements website, and after clicking around their site for a bit, we found their Special Program listing, which linked to the upcoming schedule of movies.

You can also check their locations listings to find a theater near you.

It took less than ten minutes to follow this chain of links to the answer, but it shouldn't have even taken that long. It's disappointing that the cinema employees (and the theater's phone recording) didn't answer this question right away, but I am glad the patron thought to come to the library. I hadn't heard of this movie series, and not only am I a fan of B movies, but I've also been asked about these twice since this first reference question.

Too bad this isn't a drive-in.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,