LGBT Movies Everyone Should See

LGBT films have had a long history, marked by homophobia and erasure. But we've come a long way. Now that society is more progressive than it's ever been, there are more LGBT films to choose from and support, and they're receiving commercial and critical acclaim. Here are the twenty LGBT films everyone should see.




LGBT stories have had a long and storied history in film, and it definitely hasn’t always been progressive. In the early years a film, LGBT characters and storylines were mostly not shown at all, due to certain standards and practices of what could be shown on screen, and when they were they were shown, they were often portrayed in villainous or monstrous roles. This continued to happen throughout the 20th century, until about the ‘70s and ‘80s, when LGBT characters began to be acknowledged and break ground.

The ‘80s and ‘90s saw the advent of some of our most famous LGBT directors, including Pedro Almodovar, Todd Haynes, and John Waters. Thanks to these directors, movies with gay characters and gay themes were becoming increasingly more released and accepted by mainstream audiences. High profile LGBT films such as The Birdcage and The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert were specifically released during the ‘90s. And even then, there were a lot of missteps with regards to LGBT representation in 90’s film.

Even today, we have a long way to go in terms of having more LGBT representation in film. While we’ve made many strides in the past two decades, as recently as a decade ago there were still critically acclaimed movies that included playful homophobia. There are even movies made within the last five years that have a worrying grasp on LGBT history. It can be hard to tell which LGBT movies are horribly offensive or just bad, and which ones are actually worth watching. It’s becoming a little easier, though, thanks to the increasing presence of LGBT films at the Academy Awards in the past few years. In that vein, we’ve compiled a list of the LGBT movies everyone should see.

Parting Glances (1986)

View this video on YouTube

One of the first mainstream movies to address the AIDS pandemic is also one of the first to feature character actor Steve Buscemi. The 1986 film follows a gay couple, Robert and Michael, living in New York City as they take care of Michael’s ex (Steve Buscemi), whom Michael still loves and who also has AIDS. 

The film takes place over a 24-hour period in their lives and has both dramatic and comedic moments, painting a realistic view of life with AIDS, which was revolutionary at the time the film was made. It was also lauded for its realistic portrayal of urban gay life during the Reagan administration. It was a passion project for director Bill Sherwood; this was his first and last film, as he died of complications from AIDS in 1990. —Andy Herrera

Brokeback Mountain (2005)

View this video on YouTube

Probably the most popular and high profile gay film of all time, Brokeback Mountain is still sorely underappreciated. Released in 2005 to an America that was shockingly less progressive than current day America, the movie was subjected to endless tasteless jokes about gay cowboys, even though it’s a completely serious romantic drama.

Centering on the decades-long on again and off again affair between Jack Twist (Jake Gyllenhaal) and Ennis Del Mar (Heath Ledger), Brokeback Mountain is an epic romance that gave mainstream audiences a glimpse at fictional gay life while the fight for gay rights only became more public in reality. The movie is beautifully acted by both Gyllenhaal and Ledger, and is yet another gorgeously directed movie by celebrated director Ang Lee. Brokeback Mountain was nominated for and won many awards, including Oscars. It unfortunately (and notoriously) lost the Best Picture Oscar to Crash, a loss many critics attributed to homophobia. —Andy Herrera

Carol (2015)

View this video on YouTube

Celebrated gay director Todd Haynes’ sixth movie, Carol, was a huge critical and awards success in 2015. Based on the novel The Price of Salt by Patricia Highsmith, Carol follows the story of an affair between an older divorced woman and a younger female photographer in 1950’s New York City. The movie is a beautifully acted masterpiece starring both Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara at career highs.

Carol went on to be nominated for several awards, including the Best Actress Oscar and Best Supporting Actress for Blancett and Mara respectively. Although it didn’t create much audience buzz when it was released, and not win any Oscars, Carol became a cult hit due to a fervent Internet fandom known as “The Cult of Carol,” which has kept popularity for the movie alive and healthy years after its release. —Andy Herrera

Desert Hearts (1985)

View this video on YouTube

Released in 1985, Donna Deitch’s Desert Hearts is regarded as the first film to portray lesbian sexuality in a positive light, as well as the first lesbian film to be written and directed by a woman. The film, an adaptation of the 1964 novel Desert of the Heart, tells the story of a divorced university professor who meets and falls in love with a free-spirited younger woman in Reno, Nevada in 1959.

While the movie wasn’t a huge commercial hit and received a mixed critical response (some of which was due to homophobia) at the time, Desert Hearts has since been praised as one of the best lesbian films of all time, and even one of the most romantic films of all time. It has since been restored and shown at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival and was recently added to the Criterion Collection. —Andy Herrera

Victim (1961)

View this video on YouTube

The first English language film to use the word “homosexual,” 1961 British film Victim is notable for being one of the first films to explicitly focus on gay sexuality as a plot point. The film follows a married lawyer as he’s approached by his younger male lover, who asks for help after being blackmailed. It’s a dark thriller that takes twists and turns in terms of who is being blackmailed and who becomes the blackmailer.

While not a huge hit at the time, the movie became pivotal in introducing more liberal attitudes in Britain towards homosexuality. Homosexual acts were illegal in England and Wales up until the Sexual Offences Act, which came into effect in 1967, six years after Victim was released. Director Basil Dearden, together with producer Michael Relph, became known for creating films that focus on social issues not normally discussed in British film, and specifically made Victim as a protest against Britain's criminalization of homosexuality. —Andy Herrera

The Watermelon Woman (1996)

View this video on YouTube

The first feature film directed by a black lesbian, this 1996 film is one of the more recent landmarks in queer cinema. Director Cheryl Dunye discovered a lack of information about black actresses in early film, noting that many of their names weren’t even included in the credits. Often when black actresses were included in films, they were in horrifically stereotyped roles, including the “mammy” stereotype—Hattie McDaniel notably won an Oscar for playing a character literally called “Mammy” in Gone With The Wind in 1939.

The film stars Dunye herself in a largely autobiographical role as a woman trying to make a movie about an actress from the 1930’s known for playing “mammy” roles. The film also addresses the lack of archival knowledge of black actresses, and features several queer art figures, including Camille Paglia. —Andy Herrera


Call Me By Your Name (2017)

View this video on YouTube

Based on the 2007 novel of the same name, Call Me By Your Name was in production almost since the book itself was published. Finally coming out ten years later, Call Me By Your Name made a huge splash. Directed by Luca Guadagnino, the film, while a modest box office success, became an awards darling and made a huge star/teen idol out of Timothée Chalamet and reignited the Armie Hammer’s career.

The film chronicles the summer-long love affair between Oliver, a visiting grad student, and Elio, the son of the archeology professor he’s staying with during the summer of 1983 in Italy. What’s remarkable about the movie is how little is said between Elio and Oliver, and instead, how they use glances and gestures to communicate their flirting and attraction until finally their affair becomes physical. It’s one of the most romantic movies of the past few years, gay or straight. —Andy Herrera

Tangerine (2015)

View this video on YouTube

Director Sean Baker’s 2015 film Tangerine is notable not only for being shot entirely on three iPhone 5S smartphones, but also for focusing on the lives of transgender sex workers. Even more notably, the trans actors were cast to play the main trans roles. As the entertainment industry becomes more aware of the trans community, more and more television shows and films have cast trans actors in trans roles, versus casting cisgender actors in these roles, and Tangerine is one of the most recent films to proudly do so.

Tangerine follows the lives of sex workers Sin-Dee and Alexandra over Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, as they deal with cheating boyfriends, making ends meet, and a rough patch in their friendship. The result is an equally funny and sad romp through Los Angeles that’s shot remarkably beautifully for being shot on an iPhone. Mya Taylor and Kitana Kiki Rodriguez give incredible performances in the main roles, and are the first transgender actresses to have a producer-backed ad campaign for an Oscar nomination. —Andy Herrera

Moonlight (2016)

View this video on YouTube

Moonlight was the imminent critical and commercial success of 2016. Based on the unpublished play In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue, Moonlight is a triptych that follows three stages in a man’s life as he deals with his sexuality, identity, and relationships as a young child, a teenager, and as an adult. The film stars Trevante Rhodes, Ashton Sanders, and Alex Hibbert in the titular role of Chiron, as well as Andre Holland, Mahershala Ali, and Janelle Monae.

The film was largely successful and lauded for its moving, truthful, and compassionate focus on its main character as he navigates every aspect of his reality, from his race, to his childhood poverty, to his sexuality. It paints a sensuous, beautiful portrait of this one man’s life in all of its triumphs and tragedies. The film won the Oscar for Best Picture in 2016, becoming the first LGBT film to win the award, as well as the first film with an all-black cast. —Andy Herrera

Love, Simon (2018)

View this video on YouTube

Directed by TV megaproducer Greg Berlanti (Arrow, The Flash, Riverdale, the list goes on) Love, Simon is based on the YA novel Simon Versus The Homo Sapiens Agenda and is notable for being the very first movie about a gay teenager to be released by a major studio. The film is a comedy drama in the vein of John Hughes that follows average teenager Simon Spier as he attempts to come out to his friends and family.

A passion project for Berlanti, it’s an extraordinary film in how ordinary it is as this point in history. We’ve progressed so much in our acceptance of queer sexuality that this movie didn’t receive any of the jokes or boycotts that Brokeback Mountain did thirteen years earlier, and was instead celebrated and lauded for its portrayal of a gay teenager. The movie has the same wit and heart as a John Hughes movie, as well as a winning romantic conclusion that’s not that different from one Molly Ringwald would experience. John Hughes movies were and still are a big cultural touchstone for straight teenagers, and now LGBT teenagers thankfully have their own version in Love, Simon. —Andy Herrera

Blue Is The Warmest Color (2015)

View this video on YouTube

Based on the French graphic novel of the same name, Blue Is The Warmest Color caused a stir when it was released due to its length (three hours exactly) and its graphic sexual content. The MPAA gave the film an NC-17 rating, which caused a controversy around how the MPAA rates movies with homosexual sex versus heterosexual sex. The IFC Center in New York City famously decided to disregard the film’s rating.

Blue Is The Warmest Color follows young woman Adèle (Adèle Exarchopolous) as she finds love and freedom with a blue-haired painter named Emma (Léa Seydoux). The film follows their tumultuous love affair as they graduate from high school and become young adults. It won widespread critical acclaim, as well as the Palme D’Or at the Cannes Film Festival; it was the first time that the festival awarded the Palme to both the director and lead actresses. —Andy Herrera

Boys Don't Cry (1999)

View this video on YouTube

Director: Kimberly Peirce

Stars: Hilary Swank, Chloë Sevigny, Peter Sarsgaard, Brendan Sexton III, Alicia Goranson, Jeanetta Arnette, Matt McGrath

Nevermind the Oscar it won lead actress Hilary Swank, Boys Don't Cry is a harrowing and sympathetic depiction of a real-life tragedy, one that led to the untimely death of Brandon Teena. Teena (born Teena Brandon), a non-operative female-to-male transgender person, was the subject of a brutal beating at the hands of his girlfriends' homophobic, bigotted friends.

The story not only opened viewers' eyes to the reality faced by the LGBT community today, but it made national headlines that led to increased lobbying for hate crime laws in the U.S. TA

My Beautiful Laundrette (1985)

View this video on YouTube

Director: Stephen Frears

Stars: Saeed Jaffrey, Roshan Seth, Daniel Day-Lewis, Gordon Warnecke

Daniel Day-Lewis became the Daniel Day-Lewis for a reason, and it's because of his willingness to take risks. Before Brokeback Mountain made A-listers taking gay roles the thing to talk about, Day-Lewis, then relatively unknown, starred as Johnny, a punk who begins a secret affair with his best friend, a Pakistani man named Omar, who inherits a laundrette from his uncle. More than their forbidden relationship, the film deals with the tumultuous relations between white and Asian people under Margaret Thatcher-controlled UK. Street bawls, closeted kisses, racial slurs, and strict cultural customs complicate this crtically acclaimed film. TA

Laurence Anyways (2012)

View this video on YouTube

Director: Xavier Dolan

Stars: Melvil Poupaud, Emmanuel Schwartz, Suzanne Clément, Nathalie Baye

The youngest filmmaker doing the most for the LGBT community? Xavier Dolan. The 24-year-old Canadian phenom has put out four critically acclaimed films—I Killed My Mother (2009), Heartbeats (2010), Laurence Anyways (2012), and Tom at the Farm (2013)—all with themes that focus on homosexuality and self-discovery.

Each of his movies deserves a watch, but if you only have time for one, make it Laurence Anyways. Set in the 1990s, the film follows Laurence, a happily coupled up French teacher, who confesses to his fiance, an adrogynously nicknamed woman Fred, his desires to surgically become a woman. The film isn't only about accepting love in all its forms, but also the importance of being comfortable in one's own skin, whatever it takes. TA

My Own Private Idaho

View this video on YouTube

Director: Gus Van Sant

Stars: River Phoenix, Keanu Reeves, James Russo, William Richert

In 1991, gay cinema hit the mainstream with My Own Private Idaho, Gus Van Sant's reimagining of Shakespeare's Henry histories. Starring River Phoenix and Keanu Reeves, the film follows two hustlers exploring the American Northwest.

Stripped of sentiment, it's a careful study of one of film's most beloved characters: the drifter. It gave Van Sant the clout to become the filmmaker behind hits like Good Will Hunting, important political films like Milk, and art house gems like Elephant and Paranoid Park. —RS

Go Fish (1994)

View this video on YouTube

Director: Rose Troche

Stars: Guinevere Turner, V.S. Brodie, T. Wendy McMillan, Anastasia Sharp, Migdalia Melendez, Scout, Dave Troche

Riding the wave of LGBT-related indies of the 1990s—a notable mention being The Incredibly True Adventure of Two Girls in Love (1995)— Go Fish was the breakout work of director Rose Troche, the woman who'd go on to produce The L Word, South of Nowhere, and the 2013 Sundance darling, Concussion

The film, which follows the life of a group of friends in Chicago, is particularly notable for its discussion of gender roles, highlighting the butch/femme dichotomy, the responsibility of queer filmmakers, and the hidden lives of lesbians in history. Mirroring the conversation is the free-form structure of the film, which often breaks the fourth wall, goes into dream sequences, and uses free verse poetry. TA

Mysterious Skin (2004)

View this video on YouTube

Director: Gregg Araki

Stars: Brady Corbet, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Elisabeth Shue, Chase Ellison

Not all coming-of-age movies should be rainbows and first finger-bangs. Gregg Araki's Mysterious Skin is a sobering look at child abuse. Opening in 1972, the film follows two young men as they negotiate the world in the wake of life-altering sexual abuse.

Neil McCormick (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) becomes a hustler in New York. His friend Brian (Brady Corbet) shuts himself off from the rest of the world, obsessing over the possibilities of alien abduction. Unsettling but ultimately a rewarding experience in sympathy and love, Araki's eighth feature is too honest to be ignored. RS

Circumstance (2011)

View this video on YouTube

Director: Maryam Keshavarz

Stars: Sarah Kazemy, Nikohl Boosheri, Reza Sixo Safai, Soheil Parsa

Atafeh (Nikohl Boosheri) and Shireen (Sarah Kazemy) are just a couple of teenage friends who experiment with sex, drugs, and partying. In the U.S., this would be another raunchy Judd Apatow comedy. However, in Iran, it's anything but a free-for-all good time. Morality is heavily policed in Iran, and any deviant behavior is strictly forbidden. Don't even get us started on where homosexuality falls on that spectrum. You can't help who you fall in love with, and Atafeh and Shireen happen to fall in love with each other.

In order to get the film even made, the crew had to shoot in Lebanon, which is still controlled by the militant Islamist group Hezbollah. Thus, they shot under the guise that it was Keshavarz's thesis film, and not a commercial endeavor. The risk was worth it, as Keshavarz turns in a truly heartbreaking film that pits uncontrollable love against custom, tradition, and other self-imposed societal rules. TA

Weekend (2001)

View this video on YouTube

Director: Andrew Haigh

Stars: Tom Cullen, Chris New, Jonathan Race, Laura Freeman

It's rare that a film fixed around a gay relationship captures such international attention, but Weekend is a film of particular grace and honesty. Set during a whirlwind two days, Weekend follows closeted Russel (Cullen) through a weekend spent with an artist, Glen (New), who's leaving for a two-year art course in America come Monday.

What starts as a one night stand turns into something much deeper as the film explores the intricacies of sex and the difficulties of the closet. Frank conversation follows, almost in the style of a Richard Linklater movie. TA

The Crying Game (1992)

View this video on YouTube

Director: Neil Jordan

Stars: Stephen Rea, Jaye Davidson, Forest Whitaker, Miranda Richardson

Like Pyscho or The Sixth SenseThe Crying Game was one of those movies that swore its viewers to secrecy—they wouldn't reveal the twist, lest they ruin a breathtaking experience for others. That was the word around the film's release, anyway. Now, over 20 years removed from its theatrical debut, you should know that it doesn't really matter. If you've had the twist of this moving romance spoiled for you, and that knowledge has kept you from watching Irish director Neil Jordan's most famous flick, flip the script and go watch.

The winner of a Best Original Screenplay Oscar, The Crying Game opens with the kidnapping of a British solider, played by Forest Whitaker, by members of the IRA. Before he's killed, the British soldier bonds with Fergus, played by sad-eyed Stephen Rea, even though Fergus is supposed to execute the man. The solider tells Fergus about his girlfriend, Dil (Jaye Davidson).

In the wake of the soldier's death, Fergus seeks out Dil, who sings at a nightclub. Fergus is entranced, watching Dil sing a song called "The Crying Game." But nothing is as it seems in Jordan's quiet film about relationships across seemingly impassible divides, including the film's reputation that the twist is as important as the human drama unfolding before the viewer's eyes. —RS

A Single Man (2009)

View this video on YouTube

Director: Tom Ford

Stars: Colin Firth, Julianne Moore, Matthew Goode, Nicholas Hoult

What sets A Single Man apart from all the other LGBT films is that it's not about the struggle of coming to terms with one's homosexuality. Unlike Brokeback Mountain, which works hard to convince the viewer that love between two men is possible, A Single Man understands that as a given.

Set over the course of one day in 1962, the film stars Colin Firth as George, a college professor contemplating suicide in the wake of the the accident that killed his long-time partner, Jim (Matthew Goode).

Directed by designer Tom Ford, the Oscar-nominated masterpiece is gorgeous, with visuals that are just as captivating as the sadness it depicts. TA

Paris Is Burning (1990)

View this video on YouTube

Director: Jennie Livingston

Stars: André Christian, Dorian Corey, Paris Duprée, David The Father Xtravaganza

Jennie Livingston's stunning documentary captures ball culture in the '80s, with gay New Yorkers doing some of the finest stunting the city has ever seen. Before TV shows like RuPaul's Drag Race brought walking into the prime time, there was Paris Is Burning, an incredible time capsule of old New York. Your slang and swagger will grow one-thousand fold, and you'll marvel at how much contemporary rap has in common with the incredible houses that populate the film.

R.I.P. Pepper LaBeija. RS

Philadelphia (1993)

View this video on YouTube

Director: Jonathan Demme

Stars: Tom Hanks, Denzel Washington, Roberta Maxwell, Buzz Kilman

One of the first Hollywood films to acknowledge homosexuality and AIDs, Philadelphia was praised by viewers and critics alike, resulting in an Academy Award win for lead actor Tom Hanks. The film has all the essentials for a quintessential tear jerker that could crush even the hardest of hearts: a man in a loving gay relationship is fired by a conservative law firm for having AIDs, and it's up to a homophobic lawyer to defend him for wrongful termination. 

Sure, cynics can denounce the plot for being contrived and employing a straight actor to play a gay man, but it's still the kind of teaching film that plays in ethics classes. The fact that it's got Tom Hanks, a mega movie star, at the forefront only serves to advertise the film and get more butts in front of the screen to watch an undeniably important film they otherwise might not see. TA

Angels in America (2003)

View this video on YouTube

Director: Mike Nichols

Stars: Al Pacino, Meryl Streep, Patrick Wilson, Mary-Louise Parker, Emma Thompson, Justin Kirk, Jeffrey Wright, Ben Shenkman

When playwright Tony Kushner subtitled Angels in America, "A Gay Fantasia on National Themes," he was not aggrandizing. Er, he was, but because the epic he created meets the grandeur of those words in depth of feeling, in fantastical imagery, in just how damn serious it is about saying something true about love, death, and America, the subtitle is only natural. It couldn't be any other way, really.

Thankfully, HBO's adaptation of Kushner's play, directed by the peerless Mike Nichols, reaches just as high, and doesn't miss the mark. The sprawling story, set in New York City in the mid-'80s, introduces us to a couple, Prior Walter (Justin Kirk) and Louis Ironson (Ben Shenkman). Prior has just been diagnosed with AIDS. At the same time, conservative villain Roy Cohn (Al Pacino, in his best performance of the last decade) is dying of the disease, too. Cohn's protege, Joe Pitt (Patrick Wison) is drifting further and further from his wife, Harper (Mary-Louise Parker). He's closeted and Harper knows it.

From these threads, Kushner weaves a tapestry—sidenote: this is an overused image to describe art, but it fits with Kushner's fabulous aesthetic, trust—about identity in America during the height of the AIDS crisis. Don't write off Angels as a historical artifact—its inquiries into power in this country, its radical politics, make it just as urgent as ever. And the heartbreak it conjures, that will always feel immediate. —RS

Pariah (2011)

View this video on YouTube

Director: Dee Rees

Stars: Adepero Oduye, Kim Wayans, Aasha Davis, Pernell Walker

As the behind-the-scenes stories of most LGBT films go, Pariah was almost never made. Director Dee Rees told Variety, "It was...too black and too gay." Realizing that she needed to find funding herself, Rees sold her apartment to invest in the film. What resulted was an insightful coming-of-age story about an African American 17-year-old lesbian grasping at her identity in modern-day Brooklyn, while her parents are strictly in denial. 

The film, which premiered at Sundance and was eventually picked up by Focus Features, introduced audiences to the talent of Adepero Oduye and finally gave Rees a platform to be heard. —TA

All About My Mother (1999)

View this video on YouTube

Director: Pedro Almodóvar

Stars: Cecilia Roth, Marisa Paredes, Candela Peña, Antonia San Juan

To say Pedro Almodóvar's film is complicated would be an understatement. Set in Spain, the story involves a woman whose son dies in a terrible accident—getting hit by a car while chasing an actress for an autograph—which compels her to reconnect with the father her son never knew, a transgender prostitute. There, she discovers that not only is she dying of AIDs, but she's impregnated and infected another woman. The unconventional plot is typical Almodóvar, which is to say totally atypical.

At its core, the film is a meditation on facades, what people do and tell themselves to get by. Which makes Almodovar's dedication all the clearer: "To all actresses who have played actresses. To all women who act. To men who act and become women. To all the people who want to be mothers. To my mother." TA

Happy Together (1997)

View this video on YouTube

Director: Wong Kar-wai

Stars: Leslie Cheung, Tony Leung Chiu Wai, Chen Chang, Gregory Dayton

Hong Kong's great director of love stories, Wong Kar-wai examined the disintegration of a gay couple's relationship as the two men travel abroad in Argentina. Everyone knows this story, has seen that couple trying to fix everything with one big trip. Ho Po-Wing (Leslie Cheung) and Lai Yiu-fai (Tony Leung Chiu-Wai) are that couple in Happy Together. It's beautiful and sad and lovely to look at, like all of the director's films. Just prepare yourself. This picture wounds you in ways that are all too familiar. —RS

But I'm a Cheerleader (1999)

View this video on YouTube

Director: Jamie Babbit

Stars: Natasha Lyonne, Clea DuVall, Michelle Williams, Brandt Wille

Not all queer films are super serious meditations on self-discovery. Take But I'm a Cheerleader, for example. It's got the look and feel of Aqua's "Barbie Girl" video with a satirical take on conversion therapy camps meant to "cure" homosexuality. Before dominating in Orange Is the New Black, the always fun to watch Natasha Lyonne plays a popular cheerleader whose parents are convinced she's gay, and thus send her to True Directions, a rehab center to straighten her out, so to speak. It has the opposite effect.

While the film's been criticized for playing up stereotypes, it's a campy yet fun watch and a big "fuck you" to heteronormativity. TA

The Children's Hour (1961)

View this video on YouTube

Director: William Wyler

Stars: Audrey Hepburn, Shirley MacLaine, and James Garner

Almost 30 years after Lillian Helman's play made history by referencing homosexuality during a time when it was illegal to do so on any New York stage, director William Wyler put the story on screen. The story goes as follows: a spoiled private school student seeks revenge on her teachers, who've disqualified her from a school event for bad behavior, by promoting a lie that her teachers were in a lesbian relationship, thus ruining their lives. 

Considering the Hays Code was still in effect during production, the movie was met with some pushback. Samuel Goldwyn, the only producer willing to finance the film, had screenwriter John Michael Hayes change the lie to infidelity in a heterosexual relationship instead. But by the time filming began, the Hays Code was loosened, allowing Hayes to use the original plot.

Side note: In the documentary The Celluloid Closet (1996), Shirley Maclaine admitted she and Audrey Hepburn never talked about their characters' homosexuality. TA

The Birdcage (1996)

View this video on YouTube

Director: Mike Nichols

Stars: Robin Williams, Gene Hackman, Nathan Lane, and Dianne Wiest

Nathan Lane in drag, a perfect 'stache worn by Robin Williams, and Hank Azaria's brilliant character work make The Birdcage one of the funniest movies ever made, easily. It's a classic story of two young and nervous lovebirds finally introducing each other's families. The catch? She (Calista Flockhart) comes from an ultra right-wing house and he (Azaria) was raised by two dads (Lane and Williams), who also happen to own a cabaret. 

Of course the only solution is to pretend to be a straight couple and try to pass off Nathan Lane as a woman. TA

Hedwig and the Angry Inch (2001)

View this video on YouTube

Director: John Cameron Mitchell

Stars: John Cameron Mitchell, Miriam Shorm, Stephen Trask, Andrea Martin, Michael Pitt

Any one else notice that films like the musical/comedy/drama, Hedwig, are said to have a "cult following"? We suspect it's just the LGBT community loving a film fiercly because they're finally depicted in pop culture. The cishet group has no other way of explaining it, despite its Golden Globe nom for Mitchell's portrayal of Hedwig, the transgender rockstar, and Best Director and Audience Awards at Sundance. TA

Latest in Pop Culture