What’s your favorite queer film? Years ago if you asked a queer person that question, chances are you probably heard answers repeated like, Broken Hearts Club, Trick, Jeffrey, Billy’s Hollywood Screen Kiss, Longtime Companion. In 2000, the simple fact was there just were not that many queer films being made. Twenty-three years later the landscape is completely different.
As it should be, queer films and television series are in a golden age. Last year saw movies like Bros, Fire Island, Single All the Way, and Happiest Season among a flourish of other well-loved series Pose, Schitt’s Creek and the divise Looking, just to name a tiny few. (Earlier this week we reported on how the fan backlash for Looking personally affected star Russell Tovey.)
In this golden age of filmmaking for queer people Instinct thought we would shine the spotlight on five maybe little known maybe not as popular films. These films might not have the name recogintion of award-winning films like Call Me By Your Name, Love Simon, and Moonlight, but they warrant a viewing. These romance films are legit-tear jerkers so be ready for the waterworks.
You might notice the plot summaries are somewhat sparse. Movie reviews and trailers sometimes tend to give away wayyyyy too much of the movie! So you won’t find any major spoilers ahead.
IN FROM THE SIDE (2022)
This small British film only made about $50k at the box office but seeing their TOTAL budget was only $60k the movie has since turned a profit. According to IMDB the story goes like this,
“Following a drunken encounter, two equally attached men from a cash-strapped and divided gay rugby club unwittingly sleepwalk into an adulterous affair but must conceal their growing feelings or risk destroying the club they love.”
I have to keep stopping #InFromTheSide and taking a moment.
It hurts. Like the bombs thrown by love and desire often do.
Also hurts to see a place where 🌈we✨ get to fall in love, have sex and break hearts surrounded by normal, accepting friendships.
It took ages to get here. pic.twitter.com/kalotktgjL
— knifey (((cypher))) (@jahan_tyson) January 15, 2023
This 2019 movie stars Crazy Rich Asians hunk Henry Golding. According to Gay Times the story centers around,
“G.I. Joe Origins (Henry Golding) leads the film as Kit, a British-Vietnamese man who returns to Saigon for the first time in over 30 years to scatter his parents’ ashes. During his time in Saigon, Kit reconnects with his childhood friend Lee (David Tran), falls for Lewis (Parker Sawyers), an American whose father fought in the Vietnam War, and comes to terms with his loss.”
watching Henry Golding use tongue in his kissing scenes in Monsoon pic.twitter.com/uE2IsZZDD1
— 🤧 Andrew 🤧 (@henryevil) September 27, 2020
This film did receive considerable press in the American queer media last year. I know, for me, it’s been on my to-watch list for months. I just haven’t gotten around to it. Think tonight is the night for me! Starring Hollywood royalty Stanley Tucci and Oscar winner Colin Firth Supernova introduces us to,
“Sam and Tusker [who] are traveling across England in their old RV to visit friends, family, and places from their past. Since Tusker was diagnosed with dementia two years ago, their time together is the most important thing they have.”
supernova the movie:(
I’m not used to cry in the afternoon guys pic.twitter.com/LAYwoo5QUN
— 𝘚𝘩𝘰𝘸𝘯𝘢 (@itssuperay) May 15, 2023
HOLDING THE MAN
If IMDB is describing this movie as incredibly sad then you know it must be a doozy. And finding it out it centers around two young teens exploring their first love over a span of 15 years. My eyes are already welling up.
“The warm, funny and achingly sad story of the 15-year-long love affair between Timothy Conigrave and the boy he fell in love with at high school, John Caleo.”
1) Holding The Man
This is one of the best movie about homosexuality and HIV/AIDS I have ever seen. I couldn’t stop myself from crying even after the 5 minutes of finishing the movie. And my heart broke into pieces when I got to know that this movie is based on a true story 😖😭 pic.twitter.com/KvjQXWk2aA
— staypoz+ (@staypoz_) October 31, 2019
MY BEAUTIFUL LAUNDRETTE
We went far back in the movie canon for this beloved gem of a film. This Oscar-nominated film stars eventual three-time winner Daniel-Day Lewis. Directed by Stephen Frears this 1985 film is rightfully called a queer classic,
“An ambitious Pakistani Briton and his white boyfriend strive for success and hope when they open a glamorous laundromat.” (IMDB)
Polaroid of Daniel Day-Lewis on the set of My Beautiful Laundrette (Stephen Frears, 1985). pic.twitter.com/MIZiwngNo6
— Albert Galera (@AlbertGalera) March 3, 2023
Daniel Day Lewis and Gordon Warnecke, My Beautiful Laundrette (1985). A ground breaking movie about class & immigration in Margaret Thatcher’s England.pic.twitter.com/wAOVgrPw73
— Many People Are Saying… (@many_people2) May 20, 2023
3 thoughts on “Five Gay Romance Films That Will Have You Grabbing For The Tissues”
Speaking of classics, reaching waaay back in the Wayback machine, let’s not forget “Suddenly, Last Summer” (1959) starring Elizabeth Taylor, Katharine Hepburn and Montgomery Clift. In 1959, gay themes in movies largely had to be subtextual… and the gay subtext, albeit somewhat sad and gruesome, is definitely there in this film.
Some great gay movie recommendations, thank you.
Don’t forget “That Certain Summer” starring Hal Holbrook in 1972.