Posted by Frank
In honor of Pride Month, let’s take a look at some of the most recent feature films and documentaries from the LGBT community.
For movies about the lives of gay men, consider: Test, which follows the exploits of Frankie, an understudy in a San Francisco dance company in 1985; The Happy Sad, which explores the lives of a gay Black couple in contemporary New York; Stranger By the Lake, a French thriller in which a murder takes place at a lake popular with gay men cruising for sex; and Pit Stop, an Independent Spirit Award nominee that examines the lives of two isolated men in rural Texas.
For the latest in lesbian cinema, check out: Vic + Flo Saw a Bear, about two ex-cons trying to start over in rural Quebec; Concussion, about a bored housewife who decides to become an escort following a freak accident; Margarita, about an undocumented Mexican nanny whose faces life with a partner who won’t commit and potential deportation; and Cloudburst, a highlight from SIFF 2012 about an older couple who flee their uptight family to get married in Canada, and pick up a hitchhiker along the way.
Looking for a gay coming-of-age film? Try Geography Club, based on the novel by Seattleite Brent Hartinger about a group of gay teens who form the geography club to secretly meet, thinking no one else would want to join; Date and Switch, about two best friends whose mission to help each other lose their virginity, is complicated when one announces he’s gay; Mosquita y Mari, about two Chicanas who become study partners, and possibly more; and, of course Blue is the Warmest Color, the controversial, explicit 3-hour epic about a passionate love affair between two young women that won the Palme d’Or at Cannes.
The transgender community is woefully underrepresented in feature films, but you can check out Laurence Anyways, a French-Canadian film that spans ten years in the life of Laurence, whose transition from male to female complicates his relationship with his fiancee. You can also check out season one of Orange is the New Black, whose co-star Laverne Cox (as trans prisoner Sophia) became the first transgender person to be on the cover of Time magazine.
If you prefer documentaries, check out: I Am Divine, about the drag superstar who rose to fame thanks to cult filmmaker John Waters; Vito, about Vito Russo, the pioneering gay activist and author of The Celluloid Closet; Valentine Road, about the shooting of an openly gay 8th-grader by his classmate; and Bridegroom, about Tom, whose sudden death leaves Shane, his (not legally married) partner, reeling without legal claims to Tom and barred from his funeral by Tom’s family.