Is it just me, or do most romantic movies ignore the fact that lesbians are a real thing?
Lesbian movies definitely exist, but they tend to be particularly low-budget (come on Hollywood, why?!) and therefore not well marketed.
They do exist, though – and some of them are quite good.
Here are some of my personal favorites. Look for them the next time you go looking for a new film for you and your love.
1. Better than Chocolate (1999) – Available on Netflix
Better than Chocolate tells the story of Maggie and Kim, a pair of lesbians in Canada. Kim is an artistic stud who is very out, while Maggie is an adorable femme who still hasn’t come out to her family yet.
Mayhem ensues when Maggie’s mom finds herself in the middle of a divorce and must come live with Maggie in her “spacious apartment” (that actually doesn’t exist).
This movie explores a variety of different LGBT+ groups, including pansexuals and transgendered individuals, without sugar-coating the hardships they face. Definitely a must-watch.
2. But I’m a Cheerleader! (1999) – Available on Netflix
But I’m a Cheerleader! explores what goes on at a “gay recovery camp” called True Directions. Featuring stereotypical pink and blue colors and such highly-recognizable actors as Natasha Lyonne, Clea DuVall, and even (arguably the biggest) gay icon, RuPaul, this movie is sure to make it into your favorites.
What’s even better is that there’s actually a beautiful coming-out story hidden amongst the campy (pun intended) agenda and the cheesy humor. You’ll find yourself falling in love with the characters and caring deeply about how their individual stories turn out. (Plus, Natasha Lyonne… How can you not love it?)
3. Imagine Me & You (2005) – Available on Netflix
Ok, this one might not exactly fall in the lesbian category, as it deals with a woman (played by Piper Perabo) who begins to question her sexuality at her wedding – to a man.
While this may be considered damaging as it hinges on the stereotype of bisexual women being unable to remain faithful in their relationships, it does explore the segment of the gay community who didn’t imagine that they even could be gay until that one person came along and changed their mind.
Piper Perabo and Lena Headey give a stellar performance, and their on-screen chemistry is phenomenal. (As a side note, the first time I watched this movie, I was on an 8-hour plane ride with my father… Before I came out. Pretty awkward.)
4. The Incredibly True Adventures of Two Girls in Love (1995) – Available on Netflix
Those who watch(ed) The L Word may recognize one of the main characters in this movie as a much-younger Tina Canard – it’s our very own Laurel Holloman, who seems such a good fit to play this young woman.
After falling in love with someone who comes from an entirely different background, Randy (Holloman) finds herself rising above her circumstances in order to chase her true love.
It’s definitely a stereotypical lesbian love story, but that’s not a bad thing when you’re trying to cuddle with your lady, right?
5. Loving Annabelle (2006) – Available on Netflix
Loving Annabelle takes a different approach; this movie tells the scandalous story of a teacher who falls in love with a troublemaker student. Set in a Catholic girls school, there is definitely a huge possibility of things going wrong here – and they definitely do! This isn’t your typical love story, for sure.
This deals with not only the chaos that is present in most homosexual relationships, but also the particular mayhem that occurs when a teacher falls in love with one of their students. Give it a watch if you’re looking for a different type of drama in your life.
6. 5ive Girls (aka “Five Girls”; 2006) – Available on Netflix
Let me start by saying that this movie is nothing like what I expected it to be. (When you hear about five girls stuck together in a Catholic reform school, as a teenage lesbian, it’s pretty much guaranteed that you imagine there’s going to be a lot of sex. There’s not.) However, if you are a fan of horror movies, this one’s sure to catch your interest.
Basically, these five troublemakers discover – after being locked into the school – that they have the powers necessary to beat an evil demon that seeks to take their souls. Oh, and one of the girls is actually gay, so that’s a slight perk. Even though it’s not what it sounds like, if you’re a fan of survival/supernatural horror, this movie is definitely going to send you into the arms of your lady for some much-needed “baby-I’m-scared” cuddling.
7. Chasing Amy (1997) – Available on Netflix
“Chasing Amy” tells a different side of the story – what happens when a straight man falls in love with a lesbian, despite constantly being informed that she had no interest in men?
Well, a lot, apparently. Those who don’t feel that sexuality is fluid might be somewhat offended by this movie, as it operates in the principle that our sexuality is ultimately a conscious decision.
However, director Kevin Smith touches on these subjects gracefully, and actually explains quite well that there are certain criteria in place for these sexually-fluid points in our lives. If you approach it with an open mind, this movie is actually a bit romantic, although that’s definitely not its main intention.
Overall, these movies represent just a small portion of the movies out there that are made for lesbians (and technically the last two don’t even count as lesbian movies). However, they all warrant checking out, and all are available on Netflix (my search only turned up DVD rentals, but you may be able to find them online through other sources as well).
Is there a lesbian movie you think I’ve left out? Let me know in the comments and I will try to check it out!