The 35 Best LGBTQ Movies of the 21st Century


Creative filmmaking, groundbreaking crossover hits, and our best auteurs: Listed here are the most productive queer movies of the century to this point.

This checklist used to be up to date on June 11, 2021 in birthday celebration of this 12 months’s Satisfaction month. It used to be first revealed on August 25, 2017.

The previous few years have no longer handiest introduced LGBTQ movies and tales additional into the mainstream, however queer movies have ruled awards seasons and located industrial luck in not likely puts. This has been greater than a very long time coming: The New Queer Cinema used to be a significant affect at the indie movie growth of the ’90s, and set the bar prime for the numerous queer movies to observe.

Not restricted through low budgets, movies with homosexual and lesbian tales have flourished within the first 20 years of the 21st century. There’s something in regards to the scrappy DIY aesthetic that can at all times be necessarily queer — and the movies beneath replicate a notable shift within the ambition and scope of modern queer movies. Whilst there is probably not a brand new wave of queer filmmakers on par with the ’90s growth, of their position we were given tales as sophisticated, sensual, soul-searching, and hilarious because the queer enjoy itself.

Listed here are the 35 very best LGBT movies of the 21st century.

David Ehrlich, Kate Erbland, Eric Kohn, Michael Nordine, Chris O’Falt, and Jamie Righetti contributed to this checklist.

35. “Booksmart”

As (in reality humorous) comedies turn out to be increasingly more uncommon, “Booksmart” arrived weapons blazing to kick off a robust 2019 summer season film season. Starring the charismatic duo of Beanie Feldstein and Kaitlyn Dever as very best pals who performed it secure in highschool, “Booksmart” is principally the film model of that rule-following pal who will get blackout under the influence of alcohol after her first Appletini. Following the 2 goody-goods’ roundabout adventure to their first (and closing) highschool birthday party, “Booksmart” is an ode to feminine friendship that isn’t afraid to get its fingers grimy. Dever’s Amy has been out since sophomore 12 months, she simply hasn’t ever kissed a lady. Her all-too-relatable arc comes to the heartache of figuring out her tomboy overwhelm is probably not homosexual giving approach to a wonder toilet hook-up with a brooding emo cutie. Directed through Olivia Wilde, (lesbians received’t quickly fail to remember her bisexual heartbreaker flip in “The OC”), “Booksmart” wears its queerness as naturally as a valedictorian pin. —JD

34. “The Duke of Burgundy”


Peter Strickland’s visually evocative tribute to ’70s Eu sexploitation movies explores the sadomasochistic dating between two lesbian entomologists. The movie starts with a chain of humiliating punishments that, because of an important disclose early within the movie, the viewer starts to peer as being each lovingly soft in addition to being hardcore kinky. The filmmaking itself is the important thing to unlocking the movie’s eroticism. The lighting fixtures is sensuous, the digital camera charged, the upscale costuming titillating. Strickland understands the important thing to being attractive is mounting anticipation; with “Duke of Burgundy” he establishes himself because the Hitchcock of sexual stress. —CO

33. “Circus of Books”

It’s laborious to think about a greater premise for a documentary than a homosexual porn store run through a immediately Jewish couple, however throw into the combination that their daughter is the filmmaker and you have got one of the unexpected movies of the 12 months. Filmmaker Rachel Mason follows within the footsteps of hybrid documentarian Kirsten Johnson, however throws in a heaping dose of Borscht belt humor, Jewish custom, and homosexual historical past. Her loving account of her folks Barry and Karen Mason, and the way they got here to run one in all LA’s most well liked homosexual cruising spots, is the easiest mix of private excavation and attractive storytelling. Karen emerges because the movie’s comedian lead and quintessential Jewish mom, haggling on the intercourse expo and wondering her daughter’s creative alternatives in the similar breath. It’s the sudden confluence of those eclectic components that make it this type of singularly pleasant movie. —JD

32. “I Killed My Mom”


Xavier Dolan’s “I Killed My Mom” marked the emergence of a thrilling new filmmaking ability. The Montreal actor, a trifling 20 years previous, presentations a startlingly mature viewpoint on human habits in his triple danger place as writer-director-star. He performs Hubert, a homosexual youngster repeatedly at odds along with his uptight unmarried mom (Ann Dorval). Even if described as a coming-out tale when it first made waves at Cannes and past, the film isn’t completely all in favour of Hubert’s sexuality. The identify itself turns into a story tool, toying with viewer expectancies and suggesting that it will grow to be into matricidal horror at any second.

Thankfully, “Mom” has extra reputable issues to concentrate on. Hubert’s heated conversations along with his well-intentioned mother contrasts with the relative tranquility he brings to his relationships with folks, together with his easy-going boyfriend, Antonin (Francois Arnaud), whose personal mom’s innovative, nonchalant perspective about her son’s courting lifestyles drives Hubert to expand additional disdain for his scenario at house. The stuff that makes us chortle additionally provides us pause. One evening, Hubert takes velocity and confesses his private turmoil to his sympathetic mum or dad. In a later scene, she unloads at the primary of his non-public faculty with a vulgar rant that’s each hilarious and brutally truthful. The film is touching, intense and at all times totally credible. Dolan would later building up his stylistic ambition with “Laurence In any case,” “Mommy” and a number of other different audacious filmmaking experiments in his dizzyingly prolific (but nonetheless younger) profession — however “I Killed My Mom” is the best distillation of his talent to discover the disillusionment of younger maturity in frank, unnerving phrases that obviously stem from a private position. —EK

31. “Finish of the Century”

Few movies have captured the twin fleeting and enduring nature of intimate connection as poignantly as “Finish of the Century.” The movie, a chic three-hander that most commonly revolves round two males who meet-cute on a Barcelona balcony, leaves a lingering affect at the middle. Like a perfect poem, “Finish of the Century” provides voice to a apparently indescribable feeling, one someone who’s ever fallen in love will acknowledge from deep of their soul — as though bumping into an previous pal you forgot how a lot you loved. Written and directed through Argentinian filmmaker Lucio Castro in his characteristic debut, “Finish of the Century” is the herbal descendant of lush romances like “Weekend” and “Name Me By way of Your Title,” and can indubitably undergo as one of the evocative homosexual movies of the last decade. —JD

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