10 LGBTQ+ Films to Stream Before The Year Ends
by Ryan Shea
The Coronavirus pandemic has been a roller coaster for millions of us whose lives it turned upside down over the past year. There have been a bunch of low lows and high highs during this as the world continues to adapt to the new normal that we’ve been presented with.
Television shows and movies are two things that have kept us entertained throughout all of this, especially in the early months when it was a very ‘Big Brother’ type of situation indoors. We caught up on our favorites and were introduced to a plethora of new programming and films that occupied our time that would’ve more than likely been spent at a fab dinner or cruising one of our beloved gay bars.
COVID still has no end in sight, unfortunately, so instead of being all gloom and doom about it why not grab your favorite snack and cozy up on the couch while watching one of many amazing LGBTQ films out there?
Take a look at 10 that will hopefully whet your appetite.
Love, Simon (2018)
This was a film that, maybe for the first time ever, normalized a gay leading character to a widespread audience. Take a classic John Hughes movie like 16 Candles or Pretty in Pink and make the lead character gay but scared for everyone to know. Then follow said character Simon (Nick Robinson) on his quest to keeping his sexuality a secret after its threatened to be exposed while trying to finding love at the same time. The end result is both refreshing and adorable to witness.
Moonlight rightfully won Best Picture at the 2017 Academy Awards for so many reasons. It follows the journey of an African-American man named Kevin from adolescent to full-grown adult. Along the way you find Kevin struggling with his sexuality, battling with other classmates and dealing with series problems happening in a turbulent home. Director Barry Jenkins sugar-coated nothing in this amazing film that is incredible to watch from start to finish.
How to Survive a Plague (2012)
This is movie that is educational and something that needs to be seen especially for the younger LGBTQ+ generation. The Oscar-nominated documentary follows the story of two coalitions: ACT UP and TAG (Treatment Action Group) who fought tirelessly to turn AIDS from a death sentence to something that millions of people can live with from a manageable POV. It holds nothing back when it comes to what they had to endure in order for the people of today to live as free and long as they can.
A Single Man (2009)
Colin Firth playing a gorgeous gay man? Fashion icon Tom Ford directing? Sign us up! Colin, along with a bevy of other fabulous talent including Julianne Moore and Nicholas Hault, star in an award-winning movie about a professor struggling to move on with his life in 1960’s Los Angeles after his lover is killed in a car accident.
This lesbian based crime thriller starred two of the hottest leading ladies in the world at the time (Jennifer Tilly and Gina Gershon). Two things to look out for from this memorable 90’s flick: a deliciously handsome Christopher Meloni in his pre-Oz years and arguably one of the hottest same-sex lip locks between Jennifer & Gina to ever be put on film.
Felicity Huffman earned an Oscar nomination for her amazing performance as Bree, a preoperative transgender woman. Bree’s world is flipped upside down after she discovers that she fathered a son who turns out to be a teenage hustler working the streets of NYC. It was a huge shift for Felicity from a public POV who at that point was one of the stars of ABC’s smash hit Desperate Housewives.
Brokeback Mountain (2005)
This is one of the most essential LGBTQ+ films ever in my opinion. The forbidden love story between cowboys Ennis (Heath Ledger) & Jack (Jake Gyllenhaal) is heartbreaking and incredible to watch. Both men play their characters to its fullest extent as you witness just how difficult it was for them to love one another during a time where gay was not only taboo but illegal.
The Laramie Project (2002)
Several A-list stars from Christina Ricci to Laura Linney to Peter Fonda take us inside the world of the town where Matthew Shepard was brutally murdered on October 12, 1998. It tells the story of the aftermath of Matthew’s murder in Laramie, Wyoming, by way of interviewing a bunch of local residents who gave their honest thoughts on the situation that shook the nation in their very small town.
The story of American gay activist Harvey Milk is brilliantly played by Sean Penn in this amazing movie that earned the acclaimed actor his second Oscar.
Cruel Intentions (1999)
OK this isn’t an LGBTQ+ film per se, but there’s Ryan Phillippe’s perfect behind, a juicy and devilish storyline revolving around his, Sarah Michelle Gellar and Reese Witherspoon’s character, and Joshua Jackson rolling around in the bed with another guy. Let’s not forget that hot as hell kiss between SMG and Selma Blair. If you are looking for something sinfully delicious to watch, then this is your movie.
About the Author:
Ryan Shea is an established writer who has contributed thought-provoking pieces for many different industries. He has worked for major publications including Newsday, Hollywood Life, Instinct Magazine and The Ladders.