My 10 Favourite Gay Films

JudgeG recently asked me to comment on the film, Boys In The Band and he has put up my response on his blog. Needless to say, I hate it and he loves it so he wanted to put up two opposing views. Check it out here.

Rather than dwell on stuff I don’t like, I thought I’d share my list of favourite gay films. This is just off the top of my head and I’ve put them into chronological order.


VICTIM (1961)

Predating Boys In The Band by 9 years, Victim tells of a lawyer being blackmailed because of his sexuality. This was time when being a homosexual was highly illegal and something to be ashamed of. Dirk Bogarde played the lawyer, both the actor and his character standing up for what is right with the threat of destorying their respective careers hanging over their head. A brave and inspiring film.



A heart-warming story told of different stages of a gay man’s life and in particular, his relationships and how patterns repeat themselves. Very funny and very touching at the same time. Harvey Fierstein wrote and directed and starred alongside Anne Bancroft and Matthew Broderick.


THE SUM OF US (1994)

I’m not much of a Russell Crowe fan but he is brilliant in this Australian film as a gay plumber trying to find love and his relationship with his very understanding father. A very Australian film with very Australian characters that you just fall in love with.


JEFFREY (1995)

There have been so many films about HIV/AIDS that it got a bit much at one stage. It was almost like you couldn’t have a gay film unless it was about HIV/AIDS. Jeffrey was the film that stood out for me. At times totally hilarious and at times very sad and dramatic. Patrick Stewart is stunning as a flamboyant gay man (I could never look at Captain Picard quite the same way again) and there are all star cameos from Olympia Dukakis, Christine Baranski, Kathy Najimy, Nathan Lane and Sigourney Weaver.



A wonderful love story between two teenage boys as they go through their person journies. The dance scene at the end always leaves me with tears of happiness. The film is chock full of colourful characters and lots of Mama Cass music. This film really is a beautiful thing.


GET REAL (1998)

This is the story of Steven, an English schoolboy, and his journey which culminates in a very moving coming out speech in front of his school, family and friends. There’s also a Cyberman in it so how could I not love this film?



You just knew that this film had to be on my list, didn’t you? Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal are just superb in this dramatic tear-jerker of an unspoken love between two men.


SHELTER (2007)

A film about family, being true to your dreams, love and surfing. I first saw this at the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Film Festival and just loved it. A very positive story with two appealing lead characters. Being gay is just treated as something quite normal which is quite refreshing.


PATRIK, AGE 1.5 (2008)

Another film from the Film Festival and another film about family. A Swedish gay couple want to adopt an 18 month old baby (ie. 1.5 years) and due to an error end up with a 15 year old homophobic thug. The journey that this odd family unit takes is very heartwarming and very Swedish. I could relate to the Swedish bureaucracy, that’s for sure!


MILK (2008)

A truly inspiring story about a truly inspiring man. Sean Penn does such a good job of capturing Harvey Milk and he certainly deserved the Oscar. The film is very compelling as it travels towards the inevitable ending (for those who know about Harvey Milk). Although I knew how the story ends, it still packed an emotional wallop.

3 Responses to “My 10 Favourite Gay Films”

  1. 1 judgeg
    June 28, 2009 at 10:10 pm

    I like all of these except that Brokeback Mountain wouldn’t make my Top 10. When I finally saw it I was like ‘yeah it’s good but it doesn’t rock my world.’ I think it was overhyped. Anyway, Boys In The Band will always be in my top 10!

  2. October 9, 2009 at 1:58 am

    I’m with you on Jeffrey and Milk. I love Jeffrey, it was so witty and I did purchase it without even knowing anything about it because of Patrick Stewart. He’s brilliant in it and the wonderful cameos make it feel like a much bigger movie than it really is. I can identify with Jeffrey’s fears as an excuse to keep people at a distance and missing out on life because of it. I’m still struggling with that to a degree but I’ve come a long way since when I was first introduced to the movie. They so need to do a special edition release of this movie with a commentary track or something.

    As for Milk, I was surprised by how much I was moved by it. I don’t like Sean Penn much and I think he was absolutely brilliant in this movie. I actually would like to own this one, but haven’t gotten around to getting it yet.

    I haven’t seen all the films on your list, but the only one on there that I can guarantee would NOT be on my top 10 list is Brokeback Mountain. I though the scenery was gorgeous (It was filmed in Canada afterall, not far from my hometown), but I did not like the main characters. What it boils down to me was that if you took the gay element out of it, would I care about either of these the main characters as people, and the answer is no. I would have no respect for either one and that makes it an unwatchable movie to me.

    • 3 twistinthedark
      October 11, 2009 at 10:14 pm

      I guess I cared about the characters in Brokeback Mountain because of the tragedy of their love for each other. I really felt their pain as well as their love for each other. Brilliantly acted, I thought.

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