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Top 10 LGBTQ+ Films to Watch This Pride Month

Trevante Rhodes, Ashton Sanders, Timothée Chalamet, Kitana Kiki Rodriguez, May Taylor and Emma Stone

LGBTQ community managed to make its way into cinematography. Although lesbian, gay bisexual and transgender characters have often been limited to strict storylines, such as a form of coming out, some have shown a deeper message of self-acceptance and hope. The difference in each story allows LGBTQ characters to shoulder a wide range of narrative challenges which would be usually attributed to their straight counterparts.

Over the past few years, there’s been an outstanding worldwide development of queer content for the big screen, with many pictures scoring nominations and even wins at the Academy Awards.

The genres within LGBTQ productions fall are many, but there is one lesson that each one of these movies has in common: love always wins. To celebrate Pride Month, here are ten films worth watching while you cuddle up with your special someone.

Armie Hammer and Timothée Chalamet

Call Me by Your Name - 2017

Directed by Luca Guadagnino, ‘Call Me by Your Name’ is a dreamy but sensual coming-of-age romantic drama starring Timothée Chalamet (Elio) and Armie Hammer (Oliver). Set in 1983 in northern Italy, the film describes the sentimental relationship between the 17 years old Elio and Oliver, a 24 years old graduate student. This love flourishes from intellectual conversations on art and music, which later escalates in their intimacy. But this summer fling is the illusion of a happy adolescence which will, unfortunately, fade due to parental decisions. The message of the movie is about being raised right, showing the contrasting mentalities of their parents.

Available on: Netflix, Apple TV, Prime Video.

Ashton Sanders and Trevante Rhodes

Moonlight - 2016

Winner of 3 Academy Awards, which included Best Picture, ‘Moonlight’ is the story of a young, African-American, gay man who deals with his dysfunctional home life as he grapples to his identity and sexuality. Set in the 1980’s Miami, the plot unfolds in three different periods of Chiron’s life, from his young adolescence to his mid-teen years and finally adulthood. Directed by Barry Jenkins, the picture has become one of the best LGBTQ films, addressing topics such as poverty, homophobia and bullying from the point of view of a black gay man in America.

Available on: Netflix, Apple TV, Prime Video.

Nick Robinson, Kathrine Langford, Alexandra Ship, and Jorge Lendeborg Jr.

Love, Simon - 2018

This coming-of-age drama narrates the story of Simon Spier (Nick Robinson), a 17 years old student who has yet to come out to his family and friends. But his life takes an unexpected turn once he falls in love online with one anonymous classmate and their conversations are revealed to the entire high school. Directed by Greg Berlanti (Riverdale, The Flash) and based on the self-titled novel by Becky Albertalli, this commercial hit is a funny and romantic adventure about finding yourself and falling in love. Other main topics addressed are the struggles of adolescence and the importance of friendship.

Available on: Apple TV, Prime Video, Vudu.

Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara

Carol - 2015

Set in 1950s Manhattan, the movie follows the story of Therese (Rooney Mara), a young department-store clerk who meets Carol (Cate Blanchett), an older woman oppressed by her marriage of convenience. After their relationship becomes more and more intimate, Carol boldly leaves her husband. However, the suspects of her spouse on her secret relationships makes him question her role as a mother. The picture - which earned 6 Academy Awards nominations - puts the focus on the female couple and offers a hopeful conclusion, breaking the typical rule of a dramatic ending. Among the years, ‘Carol’ has become a holiday tradition for queer women due to its Christmas release.

Available on: Netflix, Apple TV, Prime Video.

Noémie Merlant and Adéle Haenel

Portrait of a Lady on Fire - 2020

France, 1760. Héloïse, a reluctant soon bride-to-be, is gifted a portrait as a promise for her marriage by her mother. Marianne, the young painter, pretends to be her companion in order to paint her in secret because she had previously refused to pose for portraits. As time goes by, the bond between them grows stronger and when the painting is finished, Marianne is unable to betray Héloïse’s trust and reveals her true reason for arriving. The French historical drama, directed by Céline Sciamma, focuses its attention on the female gaze while depicting the emotions of falling in love.

Available on: Apple TV.

Léa Seydoux and Adéle Exarchopoulos

Blue is the Warmest Colour - 2013

As one of the most criticised LGBTQ movies, ‘Blue Is the Warmest Colour’ is a French romance film that follows the life-changing relationship between Adèle, a teenager, and the blu-haired and aspiring painter, Emma. As the plot unfolds, their intimacy and sexual attraction are what captures the audience. This represents a first-love scenario, which includes moments of happiness as well as arguments and fights between the two lovers. The film, directed by Abdelatiff Kechiche, has been awarded the Palme d’Or at Cannes but was heavily accused of being too sexual and the cause of discussion on the dangers of the ‘male gaze’.

Available on: Netflix, Apple TV, Prime Video, Vudu.

Julianne Moore, Annette penning and Mark Ruffalo

The Kids Are All Right - 2010

‘The Kids Are All Right’ is a family comedy-drama about two teenaged children trying to reunite with their biological father and introduce him to their two mothers. The lesbian couple (Annette Bening and Julianne Moore) will have their quiet life challenged by the arrival of the sperm donor (Mark Ruffalo), offering the audience some entertaining moments as well as opening a discussion over gay couples and adoption. The movie, directed by Lisa Cholodenko, was one of the first mainstream films to showcase a queer family. It had a successful box-office and was nominated for Best Picture at the Academy Awards.

Available on: Prime Video, Apple TV, Vudu.

Eddie Redmayne and Alicia Vikander

The Danish Girl - 2015

This biographical romantic drama narrates the lives of Danish painters Lili (Einar) Elbe (Eddie Redmayne) and Gerda Wegener (Alicia Vikander). Elbe is one of the first known recipients of sex reassignment surgery, thus a transgender pioneer. Set in the Copenhagen of 1926, the couple lives their artistic marriage with joy and mutual devotion. Through Lili, Einar’s female persona, he discovers his identity and what initially was considered an experiment, such as dressing up as a woman, becomes an existential transformation. Directed by Tom Hooper, the picture represented a powerful change in cinematography and received 4 Academy Awards nominations.

Available on: Netflix, Apple TV, Prime Video.

Kitana Kiki Rodriguez and May Taylor

Tangerine - 2017

Directed by Sean Baker, ‘Tangerine’ is a comedy-drama starring two trans women of colour (Mya Taylor and Kitana Kiki Rodriguez) representing trans lives in Los Angeles. The movie was shot entirely on an iPhone 5s camera and was praised for its innovative take on cinematography. The plot unfolds around Taylor and Rodriguez’s lives: they portray sex workers - a profession which they had engaged in - as they show the struggles trans women may face as well as the relief of finding friendship between these women. Their performance offered a commentary on Hollywood and on how little representation marginalised people receive on the big screen.

Available on: Netflix, Apple TV, Prime Video.

Olivia Coleman, Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz

The Favourite - 2018

This all-female historical drama, directed by Yorgos Lanthimos and starring Olivia Coleman, Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz, was one of the queerest films about women of 2018. The plot revolves around the battled intimacy between the frail Queen Anne of England, her confidante (and lover) Sarah the Duchess of Marlborough and her cousin Abigail. The rivalry between the aspiring ‘favourites’ will cross every limit, from political to sexual manipulations, escalating in a climax of consequences for each woman. The feature film was critically acclaimed, landing several nominations at the Academy Awards and being one of the few queer-based movies which offered an air of satire.

Available on: Apple TV, Vudu.

Words By Gennaro Costanzo

Graphics By Georgia Walters

#LGBTQmovies #CallMebyYourName #Moonlight #LoveSimon #Carol #PortraitofaLadyonFire #BlueistheWarmestColour #TheKidsAreAllRight #TheDanishGirl #Tangerine #TheFavourite

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