RottenTomatoes’ 200 Best LGBTQ+ Movies Of All Time (as of July 2, 2023)


#1 WELCOME TO CHECHNYA (2020)
Critics Consensus: An illuminating and urgent call to action, Welcome to Chechnya portrays the horrors of the mass persecution of the LGBTQ+ community in the Chechen Republic with tenacity and tenderness.
Synopsis: Chechnya, there are no homosexuals. That is what the tyrannical leader Ramzan Kadyrov has decided. Here we follow a group of activists who risk their lives to save LGBTQ + people who are threatened, detained, tortured and executed. The characters in the film have had their faces digitally altered to remain anonymous.

 


#2 MUCHO MUCHO AMOR: THE LEGEND OF WALTER MERCADO (2020)
Critics Consensus: An absorbing and affectionate tribute to a unique individual, Mucho Mucho Amor should prove fascinating for Walter Mercado fans as well as first-timers.
Synopsis: Once the world’s most famous astrologer, Walter Mercado seeks to resurrect a forgotten legacy. Raised in the sugar cane fields of Puerto Rico, Walter grew up to become a gender non-conforming, cape-wearing psychic whose televised horoscopes reached 120 million viewers a day for decades before he mysteriously disappeared.

 

 


#3 A SECRET LOVE (2020)
Critics Consensus: In telling one couple’s story, A Secret Love pays understated yet powerful tribute to a lifetime of choices and sacrifices made in the name of enduring devotion.
Synopsis: Falling in love in 1947, two women — Pat Henschel and pro baseball player Terry Donahue — begin a 65-year journey of love and overcoming prejudice.

 

 


#4 WE WERE HERE (2011)
Critics Consensus: We Were Here revisits the crises facing the gay community in the early 1980s — and offers a powerful tribute to the inspiring resolve shown at a time of turmoil.
Synopsis: A deep and reflective look at the arrival and impact of AIDS in San Francisco and how individuals rose to the occasion during the first years of this unimaginable crisis.

 

 


#5 MAEDCHEN IN UNIFORM (1931)
Critics Consensus: Beautifully filmed and performed, Mäedchen in Uniform avoids easy melodrama with its sensitive handling of oft-sensationalized subject matter.
Synopsis: In a strict Prussian boarding school for girls, sensitive student Manuela von Meinhardis develops a forbidden love to one of her teachers, the compassionate Elisabeth von Bernburg.

 

 


#6 BPM (BEATS PER MINUTE) (2017)
Critics Consensus: Moving without resorting to melodrama, BPM offers an engrossing look at a pivotal period in history that lingers long after the closing credits roll.
Synopsis: In this ensemble drama about AIDS activists protesting the French government’s slow response to the epidemic in early-’90s Paris, a young man named Nathan joins the movement and is soon drawn to radical organizer Sean.

 

 


#7 GIRL PICTURE (2022)
Critics Consensus: Sensitively written and beautifully acted, Girl Picture captures the whirlwind of teenage emotions without sacrificing narrative maturity and depth.
Synopsis: Three young women try to defy the persistent winter darkness in Finland. In the process, they move between dreams, reality, friendship and relationships, and try to make sense of the whole mess.

 

 


#8 MOONLIGHT (2016)
Critics Consensus: Moonlight uses one man’s story to offer a remarkable and brilliantly crafted look at lives too rarely seen in cinema.
Synopsis: This drama charts the life of a black gay youth named Chiron as he grows up in a rough neighborhood in Miami.

 

 


#9 FLEE (2021)
Critics Consensus: Depicting the refugee experience through vivid animation, Flee pushes the boundaries of documentary filmmaking to present a moving memoir of self-discovery.
Synopsis: Recounted mostly through animation to protect his identity, Amin looks back over his past as a child refugee from Afghanistan as he grapples with a secret he’s kept hidden for 20 years.

 

 


#10 GOD’S OWN COUNTRY (2017)
Critics Consensus: A quiet, moving rumination on loneliness and newfound intimacy, God’s Own Country marks an outstanding directorial debut for Francis Lee.
Synopsis: Spring. Yorkshire. Isolated young sheep farmer Johnny Saxby numbs his daily frustrations with binge drinking and casual sex, until the arrival of a Romanian migrant worker Gheorghe, employed for the lambing season, ignites an intense relationship that sets Johnny on a new path.

 

 


#11 ALL ABOUT MY MOTHER (1999)
Critics Consensus: Almodovar weaves together a magnificent tapestry of femininity with an affectionate wink to classics of theater and cinema in this poignant story of love, loss and compassion.
Synopsis: Following the tragic death of her teenage son, Manuela travels from Madrid to Barcelona in an attempt to contact the long-estranged father the boy never knew. She reunites with an old friend, an outspoken transgender sex worker, and befriends a troubled actress and a pregnant, HIV-positive nun.

 


#12 HOW TO SURVIVE A PLAGUE (2012)
Critics Consensus: Angry, powerful, and stirring, How to Survive a Plague is a brilliantly constructed documentary about the activists who pushed for action to combat the AIDS epidemic.
Synopsis: The story of two coalitions — ACT UP and TAG (Treatment Action Group) — whose activism and innovation turned AIDS from a death sentence into a manageable condition.

 

 


#13 PARIS IS BURNING (1990)
Critics Consensus: Paris Is Burning dives into ’80s transgender subculture, with the understated camera allowing this world to flourish and the people to speak (and dance) for themselves.
Synopsis: A chronicle of New York’s drag scene in the 1980s, focusing on balls, voguing and the ambitions and dreams of those who gave the era its warmth and vitality.

 

 


#14 DISCLOSURE (2020)
Critics Consensus: Disclosure engrossingly illuminates the history and effects of the way transgender lives are depicted onscreen — and outlines how much progress still needs to be made.
Synopsis: An in-depth look at Hollywood’s depiction of transgender people and the impact of those stories on transgender lives and American culture.

 

 


#15 CIRCUS OF BOOKS (2019)
Critics Consensus: Like the cheekily named store at this documentary’s center, Circus of Books proves there are countless stories below the surface if we’re only willing to look.
Synopsis: For decades, a nice Jewish couple ran Circus of Books, a porn shop and epicenter for gay LA. Their director daughter documents their life and times.

 

 


#16 CALL ME KUCHU (2012)
Critics Consensus: Alternately horrific and uplifting, Call Me Kuchu exposes heinous systematic brutality with a clear eye and admirable precision.
Synopsis: In Uganda, openly gay David Kato and his fellow activists work to defeat new legislation in their country that would make homosexuality punishable by death.

 

 


#17 MY BEAUTIFUL LAUNDRETTE (1985)
Critics Consensus: My Beautiful Laundrette is fast and all over the place because it has so much to say, and show, including a highly watchable fresh-faced Daniel Day-Lewis.
Synopsis: A Pakistani Briton renovates a rundown laundrette with his male lover while dealing with drama within his family, the local Pakistani community, and a persistent mob of skinheads.

 

 


#18 PORTRAIT OF A LADY ON FIRE (2019)
Critics Consensus: A singularly rich period piece, Portrait of a Lady on Fire finds stirring, thought-provoking drama within a powerfully acted romance.
Synopsis: In 18th-century France young painter Marianne, is commissioned to do the wedding portrait of Héloïse without her knowing. Therefore, Marianne must observe her model by day to paint her portrait at night. Day by day, the two women become closer as they share Héloïse’s last moments of freedom before the impending wedding.

 


#19 THE HALF OF IT (2020)
Critics Consensus: For viewers in search of an uncommonly smart, tender, and funny coming-of-age story, The Half of It has everything.
Synopsis: When smart but cash-strapped teen Ellie Chu agrees to write a love letter for a jock, she doesn’t expect to become his friend – or fall for his crush.

 

 


#20 BOOKSMART (2019)
Critics Consensus: Fast-paced, funny, and fresh, Booksmart does the seemingly impossible by adding a smart new spin to the coming-of-age comedy.
Synopsis: On the eve of their high school graduation, two academic superstars and best friends realize they should have worked less and played more. Determined not to fall short of their peers, the girls try to cram four years of fun into one night.

 

 


#21 PAIN AND GLORY (2019)
Critics Consensus: Pain and Glory finds writer-director Pedro Almodóvar drawing on his own life to rewarding effect — and honoring his craft as only a master filmmaker can.
Synopsis: Salvador Mallo, a filmmaker in the twilight of his career, remembers his life: his mother, his lovers, the actors he worked with. The sixties in a small village in Valencia, the eighties in Madrid, the present, when he feels an immeasurable emptiness, facing his mortality, the incapability of continuing filming, the impossibility of separating creation from his own life. The need of narrating his past can be his salvation.

 


#22 PARALLEL MOTHERS (2021)
Critics Consensus: A brilliant forum for Penélope Cruz’s talent, Parallel Mothers reaffirms the familiar pleasures of Almodóvar’s filmmaking while proving he’s still capable of growth.
Synopsis: Two unmarried women who have become pregnant by accident and are about to give birth meet in a hospital room: Janis, in her late-thirties, unrepentant and happy; Ana, a teenager, remorseful and frightened.

 

 


#23 THE HANDMAIDEN (2016)
Critics Consensus: The Handmaiden uses a Victorian crime novel as the loose inspiration for another visually sumptuous and absorbingly idiosyncratic outing from director Park Chan-wook.
Synopsis: In 1930s Korea, a swindler and a young woman pose as a Japanese count and a handmaiden to seduce a Japanese heiress and steal her fortune.

 

 


#24 SHIVA BABY (2020)
Critics Consensus: A ruefully funny calling card for debuting director Emma Seligman, Shiva Baby transcends its sitcom setup with strong performances and satisfying insights.
Synopsis: College student Danielle must cover her tracks when she unexpectedly runs into her sugar daddy at a shiva – with her parents, ex-girlfriend and family friends also in attendance.

 

 


#25 TANGERINE (2015)
Critics Consensus: Tangerine shatters casting conventions and its filmmaking techniques are up-to-the-minute, but it’s an old-fashioned comedy at heart — and a pretty wonderful one at that.
Synopsis: A transgender prostitute is released from prison and meets her friend at a donut shop. She learns that her boyfriend and pimp is cheating on her and begins a search through the neighborhood for retribution.

 


#26 TOMBOY (2011)
Critics Consensus: In tune with the emotion and tribulations of childhood, Tomboy is a charming movie that treats its main subject with warmth and heart.
Synopsis: A French family moves to a new neighborhood with during the summer holidays. The story follows a 10-year-old gender non-conforming child, Laure, who experiments with their gender presentation, adopting the name Mikäel.

 

 


#27 GODS AND MONSTERS (1998)
Critics Consensus: Gods and Monsters is a spellbinding, confusing piece of semi-fiction, featuring fine performances; McKellen leads the way, but Redgrave and Fraser don’t lag far behind.
Synopsis: It’s 1957, and James Whale’s heyday as the director of “Frankenstein,” “Bride of Frankenstein” and “The Invisible Man” is long behind him. Retired and a semi-recluse, he lives his days accompanied only by images from his past. When his dour housekeeper, Hannah, hires a handsome young gardener, the flamboyant director and simple yard man develop an unlikely friendship, which will change them forever.

 


#28 DOG DAY AFTERNOON (1975)
Critics Consensus: Framed by great work from director Sidney Lumet and fueled by a gripping performance from Al Pacino, Dog Day Afternoon offers a finely detailed snapshot of people in crisis with tension-soaked drama shaded in black humor.
Synopsis: Based on the true story of would-be Brooklyn bank robbers John Wojtowicz and Salvatore Naturale. Sonny and Sal attempt a bank heist which quickly turns sour and escalates into a hostage situation and stand-off with the police. As Sonny’s motives for the robbery are slowly revealed and things become more complicated, the heist turns into a media circus.

 


#29 GOOD MANNERS (2017)
Critics Consensus: Good Manners adroitly juggles disparate tonal shifts while taking a uniquely smart and sensitive look at female relationships.
Synopsis: Clara, a lonely nurse from the outskirts of São Paulo, is hired by mysterious and wealthy Ana as the nanny for her unborn child. The two women develop a strong bond, but soon Clara discovers a terrifying secret about the child.

 

 


#30 PARIAH (2011)
Critics Consensus: Pulsing with authenticity and led by a stirring lead performance from Adepero Oduye, Pariah is a powerful coming out/coming-of-age film that signals the arrival of a fresh new talent in writer/director Dee Rees.
Synopsis: A Brooklyn teenager juggles conflicting identities and risks friendship, heartbreak and family in a desperate search for sexual expression.

 

 


#31 HEAVENLY CREATURES (1994)
Critics Consensus: Dark, stylish, and captivating, Heavenly Creatures signals both the auspicious debut of Kate Winslet and the arrival of Peter Jackson as more than just a cult director.
Synopsis: Wealthy and precocious teenager Juliet transfers from England to New Zealand with her family, and soon befriends the quiet, brooding Pauline through their shared love of fantasy and literature. When their parents begin to suspect that their increasingly intense and obsessive bond is becoming unhealthy, the girls hatch a dark plan for those who threaten to keep them apart.

 


#32 WEEKEND (2011)
Critics Consensus: It may be a chamber piece but Weekend’s revelations on modern sexuality expand far beyond the modest setting.
Synopsis: After a drunken house party with his straight mates, Russell heads out to a gay club. Just before closing time he picks up Glen but what’s expected to be just a one-night stand becomes something else, something special.

 

 


#33 APPROPRIATE BEHAVIOR (2014)
Critics Consensus: Warm, funny, and quietly profound, Appropriate Behavior serves as a thoroughly compelling calling card for writer, director, and star Desiree Akhavan.
Synopsis: Shirin is struggling to become an ideal Persian daughter, politically correct bisexual and hip young Brooklynite but fails miserably in her attempt at all identities. Being without a cliché to hold onto can be a lonely experience.

 

 


#34 PRINCESS CYD (2017)
Critics Consensus: Princess Cyd defies coming-of-age convention to offer a sweetly understated – yet deeply resonant – look at pivotal relationships.
Synopsis: A 16-year-old girl visits her aunt in Chicago for the summer. While there, she falls for another girl, and she and her aunt challenge each other’s sex and spirit.

 

 


#35 BEING 17 (2016)
Critics Consensus: Being 17 rides the roiling emotions of adolescence through a coming-of-age melodrama whose narrative turbulence smartly reflects the confusion of its protagonists.
Synopsis: Damien lives with his mother Marianne, a doctor, while his father is on a tour of duty abroad. He is bullied by Thomas, whose mother is ill. The boys find themselves living together when Marianne invites Thomas to come and stay with them.

 

 


#36 CALL ME BY YOUR NAME (2017)
Critics Consensus: Call Me by Your Name offers a melancholy, powerfully affecting portrait of first love, empathetically acted by Timothée Chalamet and Armie Hammer.
Synopsis: In 1980s Italy, romance blossoms between a seventeen-year-old student and the older man hired as his father’s research assistant.

 

 


#37 THE POWER OF THE DOG (2021)
Critics Consensus: Brought to life by a stellar ensemble led by Benedict Cumberbatch, The Power of the Dog reaffirms writer-director Jane Campion as one of her generation’s finest filmmakers.
Synopsis: Charismatic rancher Phil Burbank inspires fear and awe in those around him. When his brother brings home a new wife and her son, Phil torments them until he finds himself exposed to the possibility of love.

 


#38 CAROL (2015)
Critics Consensus: Shaped by Todd Haynes’ deft direction and powered by a strong cast led by Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara, Carol lives up to its groundbreaking source material.
Synopsis: In an adaptation of Patricia Highsmith’s seminal novel The Price of Salt, an aspiring photographer develops an intimate relationship with an older woman in 1950s New York.

 


#39 A FANTASTIC WOMAN (2017)
Critics Consensus: Subtle and tender, A Fantastic Woman handles its timely, sensitive subject matter with care.
Synopsis: Marina, a transgender nightclub singer, comes under suspicion when her much older lover Orlando dies suddenly. After being harassed and threatened by her late boyfriend’s vengeful relatives and the police, she must defend her rights as both Orlando’s partner and as a human being.
Director: Sebastián Lelio

 


#40 FIRE ISLAND (2022)
Critics Consensus: Brought to life by a tremendously talented cast, the breezily entertaining Fire Island proves there are still fresh ways to update Austen.
Synopsis: A group of queer best friends gather in Fire Island Pines for their annual week of love and laughter, but a sudden change of events might make this their last summer in gay paradise.

 

 


#41 BEHIND THE CANDELABRA (2013)
Critics Consensus: Affectionate without sacrificing honesty, Behind the Candelabra couples award-worthy performances from Michael Douglas and Matt Damon with some typically sharp direction from Steven Soderbergh.
Synopsis: Based on the autobiographical novel, the tempestuous 6-year relationship between Liberace and his (much younger) lover, Scott Thorson, is recounted.

 

 


#42 THE DUKE OF BURGUNDY (2014)
Critics Consensus: Stylish, sensual, and smart, The Duke of Burgundy proves that erotic cinema can have genuine substance.
Synopsis: Day in and day out, lovers Cynthia and Evelyn enact an elaborate sadomasochistic fantasy as mistress and maid. But as their ritual of domination and submission begins to turn stale, Cynthia yearns for something more conventional, while Evelyn tries to push their taboos even further.

 

 


#43 STRANGER BY THE LAKE (2013)
Critics Consensus: Sexy, smart, and darkly humorous, Stranger by the Lake offers rewarding viewing for adult filmgoers in search of thought-provoking drama.
Synopsis: A cruising spot for men, tucked away on the shores of a lake. Franck falls in love with Michel, an attractive, potent and lethally dangerous man. Franck knows this but wants to live out his passion anyway.

 

 


#44 THE CRYING GAME (1992)
Critics Consensus: The Crying Game is famous for its shocking twist, but this thoughtful, haunting mystery grips the viewer from start to finish.
Synopsis: An unlikely kind of friendship develops between Fergus (Stephen Rea), an Irish Republican Army volunteer, and Jody (Forest Whitaker), a kidnapped British soldier lured into an IRA trap by Jude (Miranda Richardson), another IRA member. When the hostage-taking ends up going horribly wrong, Fergus escapes and heads to London, where he seeks out Jody’s lover, a hairdresser named Dil (Jaye Davidson). Fergus adopts the name “Jimmy” and gets a job as a day laborer. He also starts seeing Dil, who knows nothing about Fergus’ IRA background. But there is something about Dil that Fergus doesn’t know, either.

 


#45 THE NORMAL HEART (2014)
Critics Consensus: Thanks to Emmy-worthy performances from a reputable cast, The Normal Heart is not only a powerful, heartbreaking drama, but also a vital document of events leading up to and through the early AIDS crisis.
Synopsis: This adaptation of Larry Kramer’s Tony Award-winning play follows Ned Weeks, a gay male living in 1980s New York, as he struggles to raise awareness about the HIV/AIDS crisis devastating the gay community. His mission becomes increasingly personal when his partner, Felix Turner, begins developing symptoms associated with the virus.

 


#46 THE ADVENTURES OF PRISCILLA, QUEEN OF THE DESERT (1994)
Critics Consensus: While its premise is ripe for comedy — and it certainly delivers its fair share of laughs — Priscilla is also a surprisingly tender and thoughtful road movie with some outstanding performances.
Synopsis: Two drag-queens (Anthony/Mitzi and Adam/Felicia) and a transgender woman contract to perform a drag show at a resort in Alice Springs, a resort town in the remote Australian desert. They head west from Sydney aboard their lavender bus, Priscilla. En route, it is discovered that the woman they’ve contracted with is Anthony’s wife. Their bus breaks down, and is repaired by Bob, who travels on with them.

 


#47 EVERYTHING EVERYWHERE ALL AT ONCE (2022)
Critics Consensus: Led by an outstanding Michelle Yeoh, Everything Everywhere All at Once lives up to its title with an expertly calibrated assault on the senses.
Synopsis: A middle-aged Chinese immigrant is swept up into an insane adventure in which she alone can save existence by exploring other universes and connecting with the lives she could have led.

 

 


#48 MILK (2008)
Critics Consensus: Anchored by Sean Penn’s powerhouse performance, Milk is a triumphant account of America’s first openly gay man elected to public office.
Synopsis: The true story of Harvey Milk, the first openly gay man ever elected to public office. In San Francisco in the late 1970s, Harvey Milk becomes an activist for gay rights and inspires others to join him in his fight for equal rights that should be available to all Americans.

 

 


#49 LOVE IS STRANGE (2014)
Critics Consensus: Held aloft by remarkable performances from John Lithgow and Alfred Molina, Love Is Strange serves as a graceful tribute to the beauty of commitment in the face of adversity.
Synopsis: After Ben and George get married, George is fired from his teaching post, forcing them to stay with friends separately while they sell their place and look for cheaper housing — a situation that weighs heavily on all involved.

 


#50 FAREWELL, MY QUEEN (2012)
Critics Consensus: Farewell, My Queen transcends its gaudy period trappings to offer an affecting historical drama built on timeless – and timely – themes.
Synopsis: A look at the platonic relationship between Marie Antoinette and one of her female readers during the first days of the French Revolution.

 


#51 THE FALLOUT (2021)
Critics Consensus: Empathetic and well-acted, The Fallout uses the aftermath of teen trauma to grapple with the experience of grief.
Synopsis: Bolstered by new friendships forged under sudden and tragic circumstances, high schooler Vada (Jenna Ortega) begins to reinvent herself, while… [More]


#52 BLUE JEAN (2022)
Critics Consensus: Bridging times past with issues that are still current, Blue Jean resonates intellectually and emotionally thanks to thoughtful direction and authentic performances.
Synopsis: England, 1988 — Margaret Thatcher’s Conservative government is about to pass a law stigmatizing gays and lesbians, forcing Jean, a… [More]


#53 MY NAME IS PAULI MURRAY (2021)
Critics Consensus: My Name Is Pauli Murray educates and uplifts in equal measure while paying stirring tribute to a largely unsung — yet hugely important — individual.
Synopsis: Fifteen years before Rosa Parks refused to surrender her bus seat, a full decade before the U.S. Supreme Court overturned… [More]


#54 THE WAY HE LOOKS (2014)
Critics Consensus: Compassionate, emotionally detailed, and populated with resonant characters, The Way He Looks leaves a warmth that lingers.
Synopsis: Daniel Ribeiro’s coming-of-age story ‘The Way He Looks’ centers on the triangle that develops between a blind high-school student named Leo, his best female friend Giovana, and Gabriel, a new student who grows close to Leo while they work together on a project.

 

 


#55 DALLAS BUYERS CLUB (2013)
Critics Consensus: Dallas Buyers Club rests squarely on Matthew McConaughey’s scrawny shoulders, and he carries the burden gracefully with what might be a career-best performance.
Synopsis: Dallas 1985. Loosely based on the true-life tale of Ron Woodroof, a drug-taking, women-loving, homophobic man who in 1986 was diagnosed with HIV/AIDS and given thirty days to live.

 

 


#56 LOVE, SIMON (2018)
Critics Consensus: Love, Simon hits its coming-of-age beats more deftly than many entries in this well-traveled genre — and represents an overdue, if not entirely successful, milestone of inclusion.
Synopsis: Simon Spier keeps a huge secret from his family, his friends and all of his classmates: he’s gay. When that secret is threatened, Simon must face everyone and come to terms with his identity.

 


#57 THE KIDS ARE ALL RIGHT (2010)
Critics Consensus: Worthwhile as both a well-acted ensemble piece and as a smart, warm statement on family values, The Kids Are All Right is remarkable.
Synopsis: Lesbian couple Jules (Julianne Moore) and Nic (Annette Bening) have been together for almost 20 years and have two teenage… [More]


#58 PRIDE (2014)
Critics Consensus: Earnest without being didactic and uplifting without stooping to sentimentality, Pride is a joyous crowd-pleaser that genuinely works.
Synopsis: U.K. gay activists work to help miners during their lengthy strike of the National Union of Mineworkers in the summer of 1984.

 

 


#59 HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH (2001)
Critics Consensus: Hedwig and the Angry Inch may very well be the next Rocky Horror midnight movie. It not only knows how to rock, but Hedwig’s story has an emotional poignancy.
Synopsis: Raised a boy in East Berlin, Hedwig undergoes a personal transformation in order to emigrate to the U.S., where she reinvents herself as an “internationally ignored” but divinely talented rock diva, inhabiting a “beautiful gender of one”. She tours the U.S. with her band as she tells her life story and follows the former lover/band-mate who stole her songs.

 

 


#60 SWAN SONG (2021)
Critics Consensus: Udo Kier’s layered performance lends Swan Song a nuance and poignancy that offset its potentially outlandish story.
Synopsis: An aging hairdresser escapes his nursing home to embark on an odyssey across his small town to style a dead woman’s hair for her funeral, rediscovering his sparkle along the way.

 

 


#61 THE WATERMELON WOMAN (1996)
Critics Consensus: An auspicious debut for writer-director Cheryl Dunye, The Watermelon Woman tells a fresh story in wittily irreverent style.
Synopsis: A young black lesbian filmmaker probes into the life of The Watermelon Woman, a 1930s black actress who played ‘mammy’ archetypes.

 

 


#62 SUMMERTIME (2015)
Critics Consensus: Summertime (La Belle Saison) presents a well-acted, beautifully framed period romance that offers a refreshing perspective on its era in the bargain.
Synopsis: In 1971, Carole and Delphine meet and fall in love. When Carole follows Delphine back to her family farm, the… [More]


#63 UNPREGNANT (2020)
Critics Consensus: Unpregnant puts a compelling twist on the road trip comedy — and treats its sensitive subject with heart.
Synopsis: A pregnant teen and her former best friend embark on a road trip from Missouri to New Mexico…. [More]


#64 CABARET (1972)
Critics Consensus: Great performances and evocative musical numbers help Cabaret secure its status as a stylish, socially conscious classic.
Synopsis: A female girlie club entertainer in Weimar Republic era Berlin romances two men while the Nazi Party rises to power around them.

 

 


#65 GRANDMA (2015)
Critics Consensus: Boasting a stellar performance from Lily Tomlin and some powerfully empathetic work from writer-director Paul Weitz, Grandma is a dramedy that shouldn’t have to ask you to visit.
Synopsis: A misanthropic poet (Lily Tomlin) takes her granddaughter (Julia Garner) across Los Angeles in search of the money she needs… [More]


#66 WE’RE ALL GOING TO THE WORLD’S FAIR (2021)
Critics Consensus: Narratively challenging and visually haunting, We’re All Going to the World’s Fair adds a uniquely ambitious and unsettling entry to the crowded coming-of-age genre.
Synopsis: Late on a cold night somewhere in the U.S., teenage Casey (Anna Cobb in her feature debut) sits alone in… [More]


#67 SHOW ME LOVE (1998)
Critics Consensus: A naturalistic depiction of teenage life, Show Me Love has a charming, authentic feel.
Synopsis: Teens Elin (Alexandra Dahlström) and Agnes (Rebecca Liljeberg) are schoolmates. Elin is upbeat and popular, while Agnes is morose and… [More]


#68 THE IMITATION GAME (2014)
Critics Consensus: With an outstanding starring performance from Benedict Cumberbatch illuminating its fact-based story, The Imitation Game serves as an eminently well-made entry in the “prestige biopic” genre.
Synopsis: It is based on the real life story of legendary cryptanalyst Alan Turing. The film portrays the nail-biting race against time by Turing and his brilliant team of code-breakers at Britain’s top-secret Government Code and Cypher School at Bletchley Park, during the darkest days of World War II.

 


#69 TITANE (2021)
Critics Consensus: Thrillingly provocative and original, Titane reaffirms writer-director Julia Ducournau’s delightfully disturbing vision.
Synopsis: Titane: A metal highly resistant to heat and corrosion, with high tensile strength alloys, often used in medical prostheses due… [More]


#70 PASSING (2021)
Critics Consensus: While Passing’s delicate approach has a dampening effect on its story, debuting director Rebecca Hall makes the most of an impressive cast — and handles thorny themes with impressive dexterity.
Synopsis: In 1920s New York City, a Black woman finds her world upended when her life becomes intertwined with a former… [More]


#71 SUPERNOVA (2020)
Critics Consensus: Led by moving performances from Colin Firth and Stanley Tucci, Supernova is a heartbreaking look at the emotional toll that comes with accepting mortality.
Synopsis: Sam (Academy Award winner Colin Firth) and Tusker (Academy Award nominee Stanley Tucci), partners of twenty years, are traveling across… [More]


#72 MY SUMMER OF LOVE (2004)
Critics Consensus: My Summer of Love is a moody, bittersweet love story featuring outstanding performances from the leads.
Synopsis: In the Yorkshire countryside, working-class tomboy Mona meets the exotic, pampered Tamsin. To seal their friendship, Mona introduces Tamsin to her born-again Christian brother and helps her spy on her adulterous father. Bound together by their secrets, the two girls see their friendship deepen and enter into dangerous waters.

 

 


#73 BOYS DON’T CRY (1999)
Critics Consensus: Harrowing yet stirring, Boys Don’t Cry powerfully commemorates the life — and brutally unjust death — of transgender teen Brandon Teena.
Synopsis: Based on a true story, this drama was adapted from the life of Brandon Teena, born Teena Brandon, a woman who chose to live her life as a man and suffered tragic consequences as a result.

 

 


#74 ANAÏS IN LOVE (2021)
Critics Consensus: The main character may be hard to like, but Anaïs in Love offers a well-acted and breezily humorous take on its admittedly well-worn themes.
Synopsis: ANAIS IN LOVE is a buoyant French comedy from filmmaker Charline Bourgeois-Tacquet. Boasting a playfully magnetic performance by star Anaïs… [More]


#75 KEEP THE LIGHTS ON (2012)
Critics Consensus: Keep the Lights On is a mysterious, sexy journey deep into the love affair of two men that always manages to stay true to life.
Synopsis: Substance abuse and emotional and physical distance threaten the relationship between a gay filmmaker (Thure Lindhardt) and his longtime lover… [More]


#76 BROS (2022)
Critics Consensus: Bros marks a step forward in rom-com representation — and just as importantly, it’s a whole bunch of fun to watch.
Synopsis: Two men with commitment problems attempt a relationship.

 

 


#77 BOUND (1996)
Critics Consensus: Bound’s more titillating elements attracted attention, but it’s the stylish direction, solid performances, and entertaining neo-noir caper plot that make it worth a watch.
Synopsis: Tough ex-con Corky and her lover Violet concoct a scheme to steal millions of stashed mob money and pin the blame on Violet’s crooked boyfriend Caesar.

 

 


#78 BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN (2005)
Critics Consensus: A beautiful, epic Western, Brokeback Mountain’s love story is imbued with heartbreaking universality thanks to moving performances by Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal.
Synopsis: Ennis and Jack are two shepherds who develop a sexual and emotional relationship. Their relationship becomes complicated when both of them get married to their respective girlfriends.

 


#79 BLUE IS THE WARMEST COLOR (2013)
Critics Consensus: Raw, honest, powerfully acted, and deliciously intense, Blue Is the Warmest Color offers some of modern cinema’s most elegantly composed, emotionally absorbing drama.
Synopsis: A French teen (Adèle Exarchopoulos) forms a deep emotional and sexual connection with an older art student (Léa Seydoux) she… [More]


#80 BAD EDUCATION (2004)
Critics Consensus: A layered, wonderfully-acted, and passionate drama.
Synopsis: When an old friend brings filmmaker Enrique Goded (Fele Martínez) a semi-autobiographical script chronicling their adolescence, Enrique is forced to… [More]


#81 FEAR STREET PART THREE: 1666 (2021)
Critics Consensus: Fear Street Part Three: 1666 sends the slasher series back in time for a trilogy-concluding installment that caps things off on a screaming high note.
Synopsis: The origins of Sarah Fier’s curse are finally revealed as history comes full circle on a night that changes the… [More]


#82 PROFESSOR MARSTON & THE WONDER WOMEN (2017)
Critics Consensus: Professor Marston & The Wonder Women winds a lasso of cinematic truth around a fascinating fact-based tale with strong performances from its three stars.
Synopsis: If behind every great man is a great woman, then Harvard psychologist and inventor Dr. William Moulton Marston has the… [More]


#83 SAVING FACE (2004)
Critics Consensus: A charming tale of a love affair that overcomes cultural taboos.
Synopsis: Wil (Michelle Krusiec) is a lesbian, but she not dare tell her widowed mother, Hwei-lan (Joan Chen), or her very… [More]


#84 A SINGLE MAN (2009)
Critics Consensus: Though the costumes are beautiful and the art direction impeccable, what stands out most from this debut by fashion designer Tom Ford is the leading performance by Colin Firth.
Synopsis: An English professor, one year after the sudden death of his boyfriend, is unable to cope with his typical days in 1960s Los Angeles.

 

 


#85 MYSTERIOUS SKIN (2004)
Critics Consensus: Bold performances and sensitive, spot-on direction make watching this difficult tale of trauma and abuse a thought-provoking, resonant experience.
Synopsis: A teenage hustler and a young man obsessed with alien abductions cross paths, together discovering a horrible, liberating truth.

 

 


#86 CIRCUMSTANCE (2011)
Critics Consensus: A thought-provoking, insightful look into Iranian youth culture.
Synopsis: An Iranian teenager (Nikohl Boosheri) enters a lesbian relationship, while her brother (Reza Sixo Safai) becomes dangerously obsessed with Islamic… [More]


#87 SCOTTY AND THE SECRET HISTORY OF HOLLYWOOD (2017)
Critics Consensus: Scotty and the Secret History of Hollywood offers plenty of prurient thrills for film fans, but beyond the gossip lies a poignantly illuminating look at decades of sexual mores.
Synopsis: A portrait of unsung Hollywood legend Scotty Bowers, whose bestselling memoir chronicled his decades spent as sexual procurer to the stars.

 

 


#88 THE FIVE DEVILS (2022)
Critics Consensus: Overflowing with ideas as it moves across genres, The Five Devils uses intoxicating magical realism to explore a family’s troubled past.
Synopsis: Eight-year-old Vicky has a mysterious gift: she can recreate any scent she comes across, even that of her beloved mother… [More]


#89 YOSSI & JAGGER (2002)
Critics Consensus: A tersely told yet deeply felt romance.
Synopsis: Yossi is a Commander at an Israeli outpost near Lebanon. He is however involved in a secret, passionate love affair with his second in command (nicknamed Jagger). The two will often sneak off from the outpost to spend time together. A failed ambush during a full moon leaves Jagger mortally wounded and forces Yossi to finally express his love.

 

 


#90 MULHOLLAND DR. (2001)
Critics Consensus: David Lynch’s dreamlike and mysterious Mulholland Drive is a twisty neo-noir with an unconventional structure that features a mesmirizing performance from Naomi Watts as a woman on the dark fringes of Hollywood.
Synopsis: A dark-haired woman (Laura Elena Harring) is left amnesiac after a car crash. She wanders the streets of Los Angeles… [More]


#91 BEGINNERS (2010)
Critics Consensus: Wearing its twee heart on its sleeve, Beginners explores the depths of modern, multi-generational romance with wit and depth.
Synopsis: After his mother dies, Oliver (Ewan McGregor) is stunned when his father, Hal (Christopher Plummer), recently diagnosed with terminal cancer,… [More]


#92 OLD JOY (2006)
Critics Consensus: A serene, melancholy beauty permeates this meditative portrait of deep friendship and faded glory.
Synopsis: Soon to be a father, Mark (Daniel London) feels the pressure of domestic responsibility closing in, so he is more… [More]


#93 OTHER PEOPLE (2016)
Critics Consensus: Other People resists easy melodrama, rewarding viewers with a smart, subtle look at family dynamics with a talented cast and a finely calibrated blend of funny and serious moments.
Synopsis: Comedy writer David, already struggling with career frustrations and a painful breakup with his boyfriend, returns home to Sacramento to care for his cancer-stricken mother. There, he and his family bond as his mom decides to quit chemotherapy and accept death on her own terms.

 


#94 BATTLE OF THE SEXES (2017)
Critics Consensus: Battle of the Sexes turns real-life events into a crowd-pleasing, well-acted dramedy that ably entertains while smartly serving up a volley of present-day parallels.
Synopsis: The 1973 tennis match between Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs became the most watched televised sports event of all… [More]


#95 BENEDETTA (2021)
Critics Consensus: Precariously walking a tightrope of varying genres and tones, Benedetta provokes salient questions about sexual freedom and its relationship to faith.
Synopsis: Based on a true story, a 17th-century nun becomes entangled in a forbidden lesbian affair with a novice. But it… [More]


#96 BEACH RATS (2017)
Critics Consensus: Empathetic and powerfully acted, Beach Rats takes a clear-eyed yet dreamlike look at a young man’s adolescent turmoil.
Synopsis: A Brooklyn teenager spends his days experimenting with drugs and looking online for older men to meet with.

 

 


#97 CHUCK & BUCK (2000)
Critics Consensus: As poignant as it is unsettling, Chuck & Buck uses the complex dynamic between two men as fuel for untangling a rich assortment of thought-provoking themes.
Synopsis: A 27-year-old amateur playwright with the maturity level of an adolescent reconnects with a childhood friend, and then proceeds to follow him back to Los Angeles and stalk him.

 

 


#98 LAURENCE ANYWAYS (2012)
Critics Consensus: Passionate and powerfully acted, Laurence Anyways sometimes strains to achieve its narrative ambitions (and fill its three-hour running time), but ultimately succeeds.
Synopsis: In the ’90s, Laurence tells his girlfriend, Fred, that he wants to become a woman; they confront the prejudices of… [More]


#99 HANDSOME DEVIL (2016)
Critics Consensus: Handsome Devil offers a charming, well-acted variation on the coming-of-age story with a few fresh topical twists.
Synopsis: Two opposites, a loner and the top athlete at a rugby-obsessed boarding school become friends, and the authorities test their… [More]


#100 HAPPY TOGETHER (1997)
Critics Consensus: Happy Together’s strong sense of style complements its slice of life love story, even if the narrative slogs.
Synopsis: A gay couple from Hong Kong takes a trip to Argentina in search of a new beginning but instead begins drifting even further apart.

 

 


#101 THE BIRDCAGE (1996)
Critics Consensus: Mike Nichols wrangles agreeably amusing performances from Robin Williams and Nathan Lane in this fun, if not quite essential, remake of the French comedy La Cage aux Folles.
Synopsis: Armand Goldman owns a popular drag nightclub in South Miami Beach. His long-time lover, Albert, stars there as Starina. “Their” son Val (actually Armand’s by his one heterosexual fling, twenty years before) comes home to announce his engagement to Barbara Keeley, daughter of Kevin Keeley, US Senator, and co-founder of the Committee for Moral Order. The Senator and family descend upon South Beach to meet Val, his father and “mother.” What ensues is comic chaos.

 


#102 HAPPIEST SEASON (2020)
Critics Consensus: A jolly good time with heartfelt performances and more than enough holiday cheer, all you’ll want for Christmas is Happiest Season.
Synopsis: This romantic comedy is about longtime lesbian couple Abby (Kristen Stewart) and Harper (Mackenzie Davis), who made plans to go… [More]


#103 WATER LILIES (2007)
Critics Consensus: Water Lilies is a sharply-observed, provocative coming-of-age story that captures the anxieties of the early teen years.
Synopsis: Set during a sultry summer in a French suburb, Marie is desperate to join the local pool’s synchronized swimming team,… [More]


#104 MONSTER (2003)
Critics Consensus: Charlize Theron gives a searing, deglamorized performance as real life serial killer Aileen Wuornos in Monster, an intense, disquieting portrait of a profoundly damaged soul.
Synopsis: Shortly after moving to Florida, longtime prostitute Aileen Wuornos (Charlize Theron) meets young and reserved Selby Wall (Christina Ricci) and… [More]


#105 KNIFE + HEART (2018)
Critics Consensus: Knife + Heart wrings giallo-inspired thrills out of a boldly challenging story that defiantly succeeds on its own stylish merits.
Synopsis: In the summer of 1979, Paris-based filmmaker Anne is a producer of third-rate gay porn. After her editor and lover… [More]


#106 PHILADELPHIA (1993)
Critics Consensus: Philadelphia indulges in some unfortunate clichés in its quest to impart a meaningful message, but its stellar cast and sensitive direction are more than enough to compensate.
Synopsis: When a man with HIV is fired by his law firm because of his condition, he hires a homophobic small time lawyer as the only willing advocate for a wrongful dismissal suit.

 

 


#107 THE OLD GUARD (2020)
Critics Consensus: The Old Guard is occasionally restricted by genre conventions, but director Gina Prince-Bythewood brings a sophisticated vision to the superhero genre – and some knockout action sequences led by Charlize Theron.
Synopsis: A group of mercenaries, all centuries-old immortals with the ablity to heal themselves, discover someone is onto their secret, and… [More]


#108 MY OWN PRIVATE IDAHO (1991)
Critics Consensus: A tantalizing glimpse of a talented director and his stars all at the top of their respective games, Gus Van Sant’s loose reworking of Henry IV is smart, sad and audacious.
Synopsis: In this loose adaptation of Shakespeare’s “Henry IV,” Mike Waters is a gay hustler afflicted with narcolepsy. Scott Favor is the rebellious son of a mayor. Together, the two travel from Portland, Oregon to Idaho and finally to the coast of Italy in a quest to find Mike’s estranged mother. Along the way they turn tricks for money and drugs, eventually attracting the attention of a wealthy benefactor and sexual deviant.

 


#109 GBF (2013)
Critics Consensus: G.B.F. explores high school relationship dynamics and teen stereotypes with a refreshingly humorous touch – and surprisingly subtle smarts.
Synopsis: What happens after Tanner is outed by his classmates and becomes the title “gay best friend” for three high school queen bees?

 

 


#110 FRAMING AGNES (2022)
Critics Consensus: Framing Agnes may be frustratingly uneven as a work of cinematic storytelling, but that’s often outweighed by its thoughtful expansion of established historical narrative.
Synopsis: The pseudonymous Agnes was a pioneering transgender woman who participated in an infamous gender health study conducted at UCLA in… [More]


#111 THE HOURS (2002)
Critics Consensus: The movie may be a downer, but it packs an emotional wallop. Some fine acting on display here.
Synopsis: “The Hours” is the story of three women searching for more potent, meaningful lives. Each is alive at a different… [More]


#112 THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW (1975)
Critics Consensus: Rocky Horror Picture Show brings its quirky characters in tight, but it’s the narrative thrust that really drives audiences insane and keeps ’em doing the time warp again.
Synopsis: A newly-engaged couple have a breakdown in an isolated area and must seek shelter at the bizarre residence of Dr. Frank-n-Furter.

 

 


#113 GET REAL (1998)
Critics Consensus: An authentic portrayal of homosexuality in high school, Get Real is an engaging dramedy that doesn’t sermonize its audience nor trivialize its characters.
Synopsis: A tenderly romantic coming-of-age story as two boys in a British school fall in love.

 

 


#114 THE INTERVENTION (2016)
Critics Consensus: The Intervention’s familiar plot is enlivened by complex character dynamics and a likable cast.
Synopsis: A weekend getaway for four couples takes a sharp turn when one of the couples discovers the entire trip was… [More]


#115 TRANSAMERICA (2005)
Critics Consensus: A terrific performance by Felicity Huffman carries this unconventional but touching transgender road movie.
Synopsis: A transgender woman takes an unexpected journey when she learns that she mothered a son, now a teenage runaway hustling on the streets of New York.

 

 


#116 UNCLE FRANK (2020)
Critics Consensus: Uncle Frank finds writer-director Alan Ball still untangling the modern American family dynamic, aided by standout work from Paul Bettany and Sophia Lillis.
Synopsis: In 1973, teenaged Beth Bledsoe (Sophia Lillis) leaves her rural Southern hometown to study at New York University where her… [More]


#117 OUTRAGE (2009)
Critics Consensus: Outrage walks a difficult moral and ethical line — and not always successfully — but despite its flaws, it’s a fascinating, provocative look at homosexuality in American politics.
Synopsis: Oscar-nominated documentarian Kirby Dick directs this shocking and passionate indictment of the clandestine hypocrisy of many closeted homosexuals in Washington,… [More]


#118 HIGH ART (1998)
Critics Consensus: A surprisingly sultry performance from Ally Sheedy elevates High Art from pretentious melodrama to compelling — if still a little pretentious — romance.
Synopsis: Syd (Radha Mitchell), a low-level editor at a photography magazine eager to establish herself, discovers her neighbor is the once-celebrated… [More]


#119 THE WORLD TO COME (2020)
Critics Consensus: The World to Come is made from ingredients that will be familiar to fans of period forbidden romance movies, but they’re given fresh life thanks to an excellent cast.
Synopsis: In this powerful 19th century romance set in the American Northeast, Abigail (Katherine Waterston), a farmer’s wife, and her new… [More]


#120 GO FISH (1994)
Critics Consensus: With sensitive direction from Rose Troche and terrific work from co-writer/star Guinevere Turner, Go Fish plays a winning hand.
Synopsis: After leaving behind her girlfriend to attend college in Chicago, young lesbian Max West (Guinevere Turner) is introduced to Ely… [More]


#121 CONCUSSION (2013)
Critics Consensus: Smart, nuanced, and sexy, Concussion transcends its more awkward moments thanks to Robin Weigert’s remarkable starring performance.
Synopsis: A fateful blow to the head makes a middle-aged lesbian housewife (Robin Weigert) seek satisfaction as a high-end escort…. [More]


#122 BEFORE NIGHT FALLS (2000)
Critics Consensus: An impressionistic, fragmented look at Reinaldo Arenas, Before Night Falls’ imagery manages to evoke a sense of the writer’s artistry, and Bardem’s strong performance holds the film together. Finally, a biopic done well.
Synopsis: Spanning several decades, this powerful biopic offers a glimpse into the life of famed Cuban poet and novelist Reinaldo Arenas, an artist who was vilified for his homosexuality in Fidel Castro’s Cuba.

 


#123 HEARTBEATS (2010)
Critics Consensus: An art film to the max, Heartbeats intriguing and appealing premise is sometimes buried by director Xavier Dolan’s filmmaking flourishes.
Synopsis: In a story interspersed with interview tales of romantic pitfalls, friendship turns to romantic rivalry for gay man Francis and straight woman Marie when a veritable Adonis named Nicolas enters their lives. Sexual tensions mount as Francis and Marie await Nicolas’ show of preference.

 

 


#124 I LOVE YOU PHILLIP MORRIS (2009)
Critics Consensus: This fact-based romantic comedy has its flaws, but they’re mostly overcome by its consistently sweet, funny tone and one of the best performances of Jim Carrey’s career.
Synopsis: A cop turns con man once he comes out of the closet. Once imprisoned, he meets the second love of his life, whom he’ll stop at nothing to be with.

 

 


#125 MONSTER (2023)
Critics Consensus: Gently devastating in its compassion, Monster is a masterpiece of shifting perspectives that surprises to the end.
Synopsis: When her young son Minato starts to behave strangely, his mother feels that there is something wrong. Discovering that a… [More]


#126 C.R.A.Z.Y. (2005)
Critics Consensus: Balancing heart and humor against outstanding work from a talented cast, C.R.A.Z.Y. proves the coming-of-age formula can still produce powerful results.
Synopsis: A young French Canadian, one of five boys in a conservative family in the 1960s and 1970s, struggles to reconcile his emerging identity with his father’s values.

 

 


#127 VICTIM (1961)
Critics Consensus: Further elevated by a strong central performance from Dirk Bogarde, Victim offers an eloquent and emotionally affecting argument against prejudice.
Synopsis: Barrister Melville Farr is on the path to success. With his practice winning cases and a loving marriage to his wife, Farr’s career and personal life are nearly idyllic. However, when blackmailers link the secretly closeted Farr to a young gay man, everything Farr has worked for is threatened. But instead of giving in, Farr decides to fight.

 

 


#128 PORTRAIT OF JASON (1967)
Critics Consensus: Like any great work of art, Portrait of Jason tells a story that reaches far beyond its canvas in the act of illuminating its subject.
Synopsis: A black male prostitute and aspiring entertainer recounts his life story for filmmaker Shirley Clarke…. [More]


#129 SIGNATURE MOVE (2017)
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: A Muslim lesbian from Chicago cares for her TV-obsessed mother and falls in love with a wrestler…. [More]


#130 VICTOR/VICTORIA (1982)
Critics Consensus: Driven by a fantastic lead turn from Julie Andrews, Blake Edwards’ musical gender-bender is sharp, funny and all-round entertaining.
Synopsis: In 1934 Paris, a struggling female soprano finds work playing a male female impersonator, but it complicates her personal life.

 

 


#131 THE CELLULOID CLOSET (1996)
Critics Consensus: The Celluloid Closet takes a thought-provoking look at the decades of omission and misrepresentation endured by the gay community in mainstream cinema.
Synopsis: A documentary surveying the various Hollywood screen depictions of homosexuals and the attitudes behind them throughout the history of North American film.

 

 


#132 IN THE FAMILY (2011)
Critics Consensus: In the Family uses one couple’s tragedy to examine the legal meaning of parenthood – and make a persuasive argument for a more inclusive approach to family law.
Synopsis: After his partner dies in a car accident, a gay man (Patrick Wang) must fight for custody of the boy… [More]


#133 THE DEATH AND LIFE OF MARSHA P. JOHNSON (2017)
Critics Consensus: The Death and Life of Marsha P. Johnson uses its belated investigation into an activist’s murder as the framework for a sobering look at the ongoing battle for equal rights.
Synopsis: Victoria Cruz investigates the mysterious 1992 death of black gay rights activist and Stonewall veteran, Marsha P. Johnson. Using archival interviews with Johnson, and new interviews with Johnson’s family, friends and fellow activists.

 


#134 THE WEDDING BANQUET (1993)
Critics Consensus: Ang Lee’s funny and ultimately poignant comedy of manners reveals the filmmaker’s skill across genres.
Synopsis: A Taiwanese-American man is happily settled in New York with his American boyfriend. He plans a marriage of convenience to a Chinese woman in order to keep his parents off his back and to get the woman a green card. Chaos follows when his parents arrive in New York for the wedding.

 

 


#135 THE TIMES OF HARVEY MILK (1984)
Critics Consensus: True to its title, The Times of Harvey Milk looks back on the life of the titular politician and activist — and the era he helped define with his trailblazing career.
Synopsis: A documentary of the successful career and assassination of San Francisco’s first elected gay city supervisor.

 

 


#136 THE STROLL (2023)
Critics Consensus: A call to life and the ever-necessary visibility of a once-silenced community, The Stroll serves as a brilliant beacon of hope and resilience for trans women of color.
Synopsis: The history of New York’s Meatpacking District told from the perspective of transgender sex workers who lived and worked there…. [More]


#137 THE QUEEN (1968)
Critics Consensus: Celebrating its subjects without ever losing sight of their story, The Queen is a fascinating time capsule that has only gained resonance since its release.
Synopsis: In 1967, New York City is host to the Miss All-American Camp Beauty Pageant. This documentary from Frank Simon takes… [More]


#138 SOUTHERN COMFORT (2001)
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Kate Davis’s award-winning documentary chronicles the final four seasons in the life of Robert Eads, a female-to-male transsexual dying of… [More]


#139 MAKING THE BOYS (2009)
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: An exploration of the drama, struggle and legacy of the first gay play and subsequent Hollywood movie to successfully reach… [More]


#140 CHRIS & DON: A LOVE STORY (2007)
Critics Consensus: Chris and Don paints an affecting, enlightening portrait of a one-of-a-kind love affair.
Synopsis: Chris & Don chronicles the lifelong relationship between author Christopher Isherwood and his much younger lover, artist Don Bachardy, and it combines present-day interviews, archival footage shot by the couple from the 1950s, excerpts from Isherwood’s diaries, and playful animations to recount their romance.

 

 


#141 BEFORE STONEWALL (1984)
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: The riots that followed the arrests at New York City’s Stonewall Inn in 1969 are widely considered to be a… [More]


#142 STRAIGHT UP (2019)
Critics Consensus: Well-acted and sharply written, Straight Up serves as an effervescent calling card for writer/director/star James Sweeney.
Synopsis: Intellectual soul mates bond…. [More]


#143 MY LIFE IN PINK (1997)
Critics Consensus: Ma Vie en Rose follows a child’s exploration of their gender identity with warmth and empathy — for its young protagonist as well as the family affected by their journey.
Synopsis: Seven-year-old Ludovic (Georges Du Fresne) announces to his startled parents, Pierre (Jean-Philippe Écoffey) and Hanna (Michèle Laroque), that he is… [More]


#144 BEAUTIFUL THING (1996)
Critics Consensus: An engaging slice of life drama that happens to double as a gay coming-of-age story, Beautiful Thing captures its place and time with deceptive depth and skill.
Synopsis: Shy Jamie (Glen Berry) and athletic Ste (Scott Neal) are teen boys who live near each other in the London… [More]


#145 PASSAGES (2023)
Critics Consensus: Elevated by a remarkable Franz Rogowski performance, Passages adds another smart, deeply humanistic film to director/co-writer Ira Sachs’ estimable filmography.
Synopsis: Celebrated filmmaker Ira Sachs (Love is Strange) makes a breathtaking return with PASSAGES, a fresh, honest and brutally funny take… [More]


#146 LONGTIME COMPANION (1990)
Critics Consensus: Longtime Companion is a sensitive ensemble AIDS drama, lensed with sympathy which builds to a moving finale.
Synopsis: The emergence and devastation of the AIDS epidemic is chronicled in the lives of several gay men living during the 1980s.

 

 


#147 THE WILD BOYS (2017)
Critics Consensus: Debuting writer-director Bertrand Mandico’s The Wild Boys impresses with the breadth of its ambitions — and the skill with which they’re often triumphantly realized.
Synopsis: In the beginning of the 20th century, five children on the island of La Réunion commit a savage crime. As… [More]


#148 GAYBY (2012)
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Jenn, a hot yoga instructor, and Matt, a gay comic-book writer, have been best friends since college and decide to… [More]


#149 FIRST GIRL I LOVED (2016)
Critics Consensus: Intelligent, empathetic, and well-acted, First Girl I Loved explores teen romance from a refreshing – and emotionally resonant – perspective.
Synopsis: Anne falls in love with the most popular girl in her high school. When she confesses how she feels to… [More]


#150 THE BOYS IN THE BAND (1970)
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Michael (Kenneth Nelson) is hosting a birthday celebration for a pal when he gets an unexpected visit from old friend… [More]


#151 DESERT HEARTS (1985)
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: A New York professor (Helen Shaver) divorces her husband and has an affair with another woman (Patricia Charbonneau) in 1959… [More]


#152 FIRE (1996)
Critics Consensus: Fire takes a slow-burning approach to its exploration of illicit love, trading overwhelming heat for a seductive warmth that lingers.
Synopsis: Sita (Nandita Das) and Radha (Shabana Azmi) are two Indian women stuck in loveless marriages. While Sita is trapped in… [More]


#153 THE PERSIAN VERSION (2023)
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: … [More]


#154 UNDERTOW (2009)
Critics Consensus: A drama as beautifully filmed as it is finely detailed, Undertow is a wonderfully unique love story with a touch of magic.
Synopsis: An unusual ghost story set on the Peruvian seaside; a married fisherman struggles to reconcile his devotion to his male lover within his town’s rigid traditions.

 

 


#155 BORN IN FLAMES (1983)
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: In a future where a socialist government gains power, a group of women decides to organize and rebel…. [More]


#156 ALL OVER ME (1996)
Critics Consensus: All Over Me takes a serious, sensitive approach to teen lives and romantic relationships that are all too often ignored or misunderstood.
Synopsis: Claude (Alison Folland) is a young musician living in New York City’s tough Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood. She finds herself falling… [More]


#157 I KILLED MY MOTHER (2009)
Critics Consensus: I Killed My Mother’s raw, blunt coming-of-age narrative marks an impressive debut for filmmaker Xavier Dolan.
Synopsis: A young homosexual has problems with his mother…. [More]


#158 KISS OF THE SPIDER WOMAN (1985)
Critics Consensus: Kiss of the Spider Woman weaves an alluring exploration of sexual and societal norms that’s further elevated by strong work from William Hurt and Raul Julia.
Synopsis: The story of two radically different men thrown together in a Latin American prison cell. One is Valentin, a journalist being tortured for his political beliefs. The other is Molina, a gay window-dresser who fills their lonely nights by spinning romantic fantasies drawn from memories of old movies.

 

 


#159 BLACK WHITE & GRAY: A PORTRAIT OF SAM WAGSTAFF AND ROBERT MAPPLETHORPE (2007)
Critics Consensus: Vital documentation of an unsung 70’s art patron and his famous photographer lover. A vivid and tragic story.
Synopsis: Filmmaker James Crump looks at the complex relationship between art curator Sam Wagstaff and photographer Robert Mapplethorpe, and their influence… [More]


#160 MARGARITA, WITH A STRAW (2014)
Critics Consensus: Elevated by a unique perspective and a magnetic lead performance, Margarita with a Straw puts some welcome spins on the coming-of-age genre.
Synopsis: A rebellious young woman with cerebral palsy leaves India to study in New York. On her journey of self-discovery, she… [More]


#161 BEAUTIFUL BOXER (2004)
Critics Consensus: Beautiful Boxer blends boxing and identity politics to create a striking, if overdrawn, portrait of self discovery.
Synopsis: A Thai man (Asanee Suwan) who wants to have a sex-change operation becomes a champion kickboxer…. [More]


#162 KIKI (2016)
Critics Consensus: Kiki compassionately captures a scene on the social margins, offering — and demanding — respect and empathy for people to whom it’s too often denied.
Synopsis: In New York City, LGBTQ youth-of-color gather on the Christopher Street Pier to practice the performance-based art form Ballroom, which… [More]


#163 LOVESONG (2016)
Critics Consensus: Wise, well-acted, and emotionally resonant, Lovesong explores emotionally resonant themes through the ups and downs of the bond between two women.
Synopsis: Neglected by her husband, Sarah (Riley Keough) embarks on an impromptu road trip with her young daughter and her best… [More]


#164 NORTH SEA TEXAS (2011)
Critics Consensus: Strong direction and delicate performances save Noordzee, Texas from its narrative cliches.
Synopsis: A teenager searching for love finds it in the boy next door…. [More]


#165 CLOSET MONSTER (2015)
Critics Consensus: Closet Monster is a unique, understated fable, buoyed by a strong performance from Connor Jessup.
Synopsis: A closeted Newfoundland teen named Oscar (Connor Jessup) dreams of becoming a special-effects makeup artist, and is terrified of his macho father finding out the truth about his sexuality. When he falls for Wilder (Aliocha Schneider), a handsome, worldly co-worker at the hardware store, he is forced to confront his fears.

 

 


#166 FUNNY BOY (2020)
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: A young Tamil boy growing up gay in Sri Lanka during the deadly Tamil-Sinhalese conflict…. [More]


#167 MAURICE (1987)
Critics Consensus: Maurice sensitively explores the ramifications of forbidden desire with a powerful love story brought to life by the outstanding efforts of a talented cast.
Synopsis: After his lover rejects him, a young man trapped by the oppressiveness of Edwardian society tries to come to terms with and accept his sexuality.

 

 


#168 ALEX STRANGELOVE (2018)
Critics Consensus: Alex Strangelove offers a refreshingly insightful — and fittingly adult — take on teen sexuality enlivened by smart humor and a fearlessly progressive approach.
Synopsis: Alex, high school class president, nerd and a straight A student, has been dating Claire a long time. They decide to sleep together but then he meets a gay guy and he’s confused.

 

 


#169 HOLDING THE MAN (2015)
Critics Consensus: Heart-wrenching performances center Holding the Man, an achingly beautiful portrayal of love and death that may be too real for some.
Synopsis: 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.

 

 


#170 LIANNA (1983)
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Linda Griffiths plays Lianna, the naive young wife of a professor bored with her life and angered at her husband’s… [More]


#171 EDGE OF SEVENTEEN (1998)
Critics Consensus: A time capsule assembled with honesty and sensitivity, Edge of Seventeen overcomes youthful fumbles to capture a time of life — and an era.
Synopsis: Set in 1984 in Sandusky, Ohio, it follows the coming-out of a naive 17-year-old at exactly the moment when gender-bending… [More]


#172 TRICK (1999)
Critics Consensus: By portraying its love story as nothing less than conventional, Trick avoids genre tropes to create a simple, effective romance.
Synopsis: Gabriel is a young, aspiring musical composer whose life seems stuck in the First Act. When his new musical number gets a critical reception, a theatre colleague, Perry, tells Gabriel that he needs to get a life before he can write about one – so he heads straight for his local gay bar.

 

 


#173 CRUSH (2022)
Critics Consensus: Some of the writing is stilted and the execution is occasionally uneven, but Crush’s central love story is easy to fall for.
Synopsis: When a young artist is forced to join her high school track team, she uses it as a chance to… [More]


#174 BILLY’S HOLLYWOOD SCREEN KISS (1998)
Critics Consensus: Insubstantial yet charming, Billy’s Hollywood Screen Kiss tells a love story that’s as rooted in classic Hollywood as it is in timely themes.
Synopsis: Billy Collier is a photographer working on a series of pictures featuring recreations of movie kisses, with drag queens playing the female roles. For his male model, he hires Gabriel, a young waiter on whom he has developed a serious crush. While Billy is openly gay, Gabriel says that he is straight and even claims to have a girlfriend. However, as they spend more time together and grow closer, Billy becomes increasingly unsure that this is true.

 


#175 BURNING MONEY (2000)
Critics Consensus: Burnt Money tells a stylish and steamy story about criminals on the lam.
Synopsis: Set in Argentina in 1965, the story follows the tumultuous relationship between two men who became lovers and ultimately ruthless… [More]


#176 TORCH SONG TRILOGY (1988)
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: A very personal story that is both funny and poignant, Torch Song Trilogy chronicles a New Yorker’s search for love, respect and tradition in a world that seems not especially made for him.

 

 


#177 IN & OUT (1997)
Critics Consensus: It doesn’t always find comfortable ground between broad comedy and social commentary, but lively performances — especially from Kevin Kline and Joan Cusack — enrich In & Out’s mixture of laughs and sexual tolerance.
Synopsis: A midwestern teacher questions his sexuality after a former student makes a comment about him at the Academy Awards.

 

 


#178 PERSONAL BEST (1982)
Critics Consensus: Mariel Hemingway has a career-making star turn in this highly physical drama about two Olympic athletes who find each other during competitive training.
Synopsis: Young sprinter Chris Cahill (Mariel Hemingway) is having difficulty reaching her potential as an athlete, until she meets established track… [More]


#179 STRANGE WORLD (2022)
Critics Consensus: Strange World is a Disney milestone in terms of representation — but as a storytelling experience, this dazzlingly animated adventure offers little audiences haven’t already seen.
Synopsis: Walt Disney Animation Studios’ original action-packed adventure “Strange World” introduces a legendary family of explorers, the Clades, as they attempt… [More]


#180 BENT (1997)
Critics Consensus: Bent juggles heavy topics with style, though its heavy-handedness at times feels more like exploitation than exploration.
Synopsis: Max is a handsome young man who, after a fateful tryst with a German soldier, is forced to run for his life. Eventually Max is placed in a concentration camp where he pretends to be Jewish because in the eyes of the Nazis, gays are the lowest form of human being. But it takes a relationship with an openly gay prisoner to teach Max that without the love of another, life is not worth living.

 


#181 MAYOR PETE (2021)
Critics Consensus: Mayor Pete may not pull back the curtain on its subject’s deepest inner self, but it remains a compelling portrait of a candidate on the campaign trail.
Synopsis: Mayor Pete brings viewers inside Pete’s campaign to be the youngest U.S. President, providing an unprecedented intimacy with the candidate,… [More]


#182 SET IT OFF (1996)
Critics Consensus: It may not boast an original plot, but Set It Off is a satisfying, socially conscious heist film thanks largely to fine performances from its leads.
Synopsis: After being fired from her job as a bank teller, Frankie (Vivica A. Fox) begins working at a janitorial service… [More]


#183 LOVE! VALOUR! COMPASSION! (1997)
Critics Consensus: Sharp writing and a strong ensemble make Love! Valour! Compassion! work, though its stage-like presentation leaves something to be desired.
Synopsis: A group of gay New Yorkers — including Buzz Hauser (Jason Alexander), an HIV-positive Broadway musical enthusiast; John Jeckyll (John… [More]


#184 WERE THE WORLD MINE (2008)
Critics Consensus: Charming, endearing, and a little clunky, Were the World Mine is an entertaining, if somewhat unnecessary, musical adaptation.
Synopsis: A bullied and demoralized gay student at an all-boys school uses a magical flower derived from Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ to turn many in his community gay, including a comely rugby player for himself.

 

 


#185 BOY CULTURE (2006)
Critics Consensus: Eloquent one-liners and quick pacing make Boy Culture sharper than the typical gay indie flick.
Synopsis: A successful gay male escort describes in a series of confessions his tangled romantic relationships with his two roommates and an older, enigmatic male client.

 

 


#186 JEFFREY (1995)
Critics Consensus: Jeffrey offends as readily as it amuses, but an outstanding performance from Patrick Stewart keeps it from going completely off the rails.
Synopsis: Jeffrey (Steven Weber), a gay man living in New York City with an overwhelming fear of contracting AIDS, concludes that… [More]


#187 AMMONITE (2020)
Critics Consensus: The chemistry between Saoirse Ronan and a never-better Kate Winslet helps Ammonite transcend its period romance trappings.
Synopsis: In 1800s England, acclaimed but unrecognized fossil hunter Mary Anning (Kate Winslet) works alone on the rugged Southern coastline. With… [More]


#188 THE RUNAWAYS (2010)
Critics Consensus: Viewers expecting an in-depth biopic will be disappointed, but The Runaways is as electric as the band’s music, largely thanks to strong performances from Michael Shannon, Dakota Fanning, and Kristen Stewart.
Synopsis: Joan Jett (Kristen Stewart) and Cherie Currie (Dakota Fanning), two rebellious teenagers from Southern California, become the frontwomen for the… [More]


#189 SHORTBUS (2006)
Critics Consensus: The sex may be explicit, but Mitchell integrates it into the characters’ lives and serves the whole story up with a generous dose of sweetness and wit.
Synopsis: A group of New Yorkers caught up in their romantic/sexual milieu converge at Shortbus, an underground Brooklyn salon infamous for its blend of art, music, politics, and carnality, and loosely inspired by various underground NYC gatherings that took place in the early 2000s. Here, gay couple Jamie and James meet Ceth, a young ex-model and aspiring singer.

 


#190 LIFE PARTNERS (2014)
Critics Consensus: With two appealing leads adrift in a sitcom-worthy plot, Life Partners doesn’t do quite enough to earn viewers’ commitment.
Synopsis: A 29-year-old lawyer (Gillian Jacobs) and her lesbian best friend (Leighton Meester) experience a dramatic shift in their longtime bond… [More]


#191 STRANGE WAY OF LIFE (2023)
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: A man rides a horse across the desert that separates him from Bitter Creek. He comes to visit Sheriff Jake…. [More]


#192 PRINCESA (2001)
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: “Princesa” is the story of Fernanda, a 19-year-old Brazilian transsexual whose dream is to become a woman, find a husband… [More]


#193 KNOCK AT THE CABIN (2023)
Critics Consensus: Although it’s often less than scary and parts of the story don’t bear scrutiny, Knock at the Cabin is a thought-provoking chiller and upper-tier Shyamalan.
Synopsis: While vacationing, a girl and her parents are taken hostage by armed strangers who demand that the family make a choice to avert the apocalypse.

 

 


#194 FALLING (2020)
Critics Consensus: As messy and complex as the relationship at its center, Falling’s repetitive nature can be taxing, but its heart is clearly in the right place.
Synopsis: John Peterson lives with his partner Eric and their adopted daughter in Southern California. When he is visited by his aging father who is searching for a place to retire, their two very different worlds collide.

 

 


#195 REACHING FOR THE MOON (2013)
Critics Consensus: Reaching for the Moon’s uptight sensibilities sometimes play more pretentious than poetic, but solid performances and sumptuous photography leave a lingering longing for love in the tropics.
Synopsis: Poet Elizabeth Bishop (Miranda Otto) has a love affair with architect Lota de Macedo Soares (Gloria Pires)…. [More]


#196 THE DANISH GIRL (2015)
Critics Consensus: The Danish Girl serves as another showcase for Eddie Redmayne’s talent — and poignantly explores thought-provoking themes with a beautifully filmed biopic drama.
Synopsis: Copenhagen, Denmark, 1926. A fictitious love story loosely inspired by the lives of Danish artists Lili Elbe and Gerda Wegener. Lili and Gerda’s marriage and work evolve as they navigate Lili’s groundbreaking journey as a transgender pioneer.

 

 


#197 GUN HILL ROAD (2011)
Critics Consensus: Equal parts absorbing and educational, Gun Hill Road wears its heart on its sleeve through tender performances that make up for its narrative familiarity.
Synopsis: After a three-year stint in prison, an ex-con returns home and tries to put his family back together, but his… [More]


#198 CAMP (2003)
Critics Consensus: Campy comedy that squeaks by on its charms.
Synopsis: At Camp Ovation, kids of all ages spend their summer expressing themselves through dance, music and theater. Vlad (Daniel Letterle)… [More]


#199 BIG EDEN (2000)
Critics Consensus: Though unrealistic, Big Eden has all the charm and sweetness of a fairy tale.
Synopsis: Henry Hart is a young gay artist living in New York City. When his grandfather has a stroke, Henry puts his career on hold and returns home to the small town of Big Eden, Montana, to care for him. While there, Henry hopes to strike up a romance with Dean Stewart, his high-school best friend for whom he still has feelings. But he’s surprised when he finds that Pike, a quiet Native American who owns the local general store, may have a crush on him.

 


#200 THE BROKEN HEARTS CLUB (2000)
Critics Consensus: The Broken Hearts Club often feels like an amalgam of 70s sitcoms — though a hunky lead and a sweet central romance provide soapy delights.
Synopsis: A close-knit group of gay friends share the emotional roller coster of life, relationships, the death of friends, new beginnings, jealousy, fatherhood and professional success. At various stages of life’s disarray, these young men share humorous and tragic relationships and always have each other to rely on.