Shows like Orange Is the New Black, Transparent, The Good Fight, Sense8 and The 100 have helped boost the number of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender characters on TV to a record high, but the LGBT representation in mainstream cinema is downright pitiful. There’s a few compelling queer movies definitely worth your attention this fall.
1. 120 Beats Per Minute
This AIDS activism drama, who won four awards at this year’s Cannes Film Festival including the Grand Jury Prize, follows a group of young activists in the early 1990s struggling to find traction amid public indifference in Paris.
The movie, written and directed by Moroccan-born French filmmaker Robin Campillo (The Class, They Came Back), will have its North American premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival next month.
2. Battle of the Sexes
Directed by Valerie Faris and Jonathan Dayton, the duo behind the sleeper hit Little Miss Sunshine, Battle of the Sexes examines the infamous 1973 tennis match between Bobby Riggs (played by Steve Carell) and Billie Jean King (played by Academy Award winner Emma Stone) that became one of the most watched television event of all time. The match also sparked up a global conversation about gender equality, pushing the feminist movement to another peak.
This comedy-drama, written by Academy Award winner Simon Beaufoy (Slumdog Millionaire), will also follow Billie Jean King coming in terms with her sexuality.
The movie will premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival on September 22, 2017.
3. Call Me by Your Name
Based on the eponymous novel by American writer André Aciman and directed by Luca Guadagnino (the genius behind I Am Love and A Bigger Splash), Call Me by Your Name is the story of an intellectually precocious 17-year-old American-Italian Jewish boy who falls in love with his father’s intern, a 24-year-old American Jewish scholar.
The movie was called a “queer masterpiece” at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, stars Armie Hammer (The Social Network, Nocturnal Animals), Michael Stuhlbarg (A Serious Man, Boardwalk Empire) and Timothée Chalamet (Homeland, the upcoming Christian Bale western Hostiles) in a role that was lauded by critics and deemed a breakthrough performance.
This gorgeously shot drama, is set in 1980s Italy, features original music from indie-folk singer-songwriter Sufjan Stevens.
Call Me by Your Name will also be the subject of a special presentation at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival, which runs September 7 through September 17, 2017.
Japanese filmmaker Naoko Ogigami’s new drama, Close-Knit, centers on a transgender woman who becomes a mother figure to an 11-year-old girl.
The movie marks prolific Japanese actress Lily’s last appearance in cinema, earned rave reviews when it premiered at Outfest Los Angeles last month. Close-Knit also won the Audience Award at the Far East Film Festival in Udine, Italy, last April.
5. God’s Own Country
God’s Own Country follows an English farmer and a Romanian migrant who embark on an intense relationship during spring lambing season in England.
This Yorkshire-set tale of self-discovery was dubbed the “British Brokeback Mountain” at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, where the movie won the Special Jury Award for Directing at the World Cinema Competition.
This intimate drama, starring Josh O’Connor and Alec Secareanu, opens in theaters on October 27th.
6. Axolotl Overkill
German author Helene Hegermann turned her first novel, Axolotl Overkill, into her feature-directing debut, which screened at this year’s Sundance Film Festival.
This tale of youthful excess and exuberance centers on Mifti, a 16 year-old girl who strikes up a relationship with Alice, a much older blue-collar criminal.
The movie was called a “surprisingly affecting debut” by many critics, will be available on demand this fall.