As an avid fan of good gay movies, I have my favorites. Don't get me wrong, there are LGBT movies, too, that confuse me, that led me to ask, "So, what's the point?" I have seen a lot of gay movies, maybe, more than 200 (is that a lot to you?) ---and I've got a DVD collection (more than a thousand--both LGBT and general releases films) of those that I really, really like.
These are what I think are...
TOP 10 BEST GAY FILMS
1. Brokeback Mountain (USA)
Who doesn't know this film, anyway? Even the heteros know it not just as a gay movie but an award-winning gay movie. It's a beautiful story of love of two cowboys with the beauty of nature and the sound of rivers as bear witness to the "love that dare not speaks its name." The movie ends in tragedy when Jack Twist (Jake Gyllenhaal) died and Ennis Del Mar (Heath Ledger) was never the same again. Who could ever forget this line? "Tell you what, we coulda had a good life together! Fuckin' real good life!You are too much for me Ennis, you sonofawhoreson bitch! I wish I knew how to quit you."
2. Philadelphia (USA)
Tom Hanks did so well in this movie that he got his first Oscar as Best Actor in a Leading Performance. This was my very first good gay movie that made me cry. It's based on a true story of a lawyer/gay guy who had AIDS and who sued a law firm for unfair dismissal at work. When Tom Hanks accepted his award at the 66th Annual Academy Awards, the audience gave him a standing ovation and then I cried more when he made the best acceptance speech in the history of the Academy, so far. The emotions and the acting performances from all actors in this film were raw, convincing and moving.
3. Breakfast on Pluto (Ireland/UK)
This film has everything: sexuality, music, religion, art, history, drama, comedy, etc. It is set in Ireland and London in the 70's. It is about a transgender orphan searching for love and her long-lost mother. Cillian Murphy as Patrick "Kitten" Braden took the role like he really is the character that would make you gasp in disbelief if you hear someone say that he's not really a trans in real life. And yes, he's so beautiful in the film!
4. Shelter (USA)
Ah...I love this good gay film. It's sweet but not too cheesy for a gay movie. The film offers conflicts and surprises that it is real and non-exaggeration. It is what it is: simple, yet, utterly true to each one watching. Aside from the simplicity of the story, hot, surf bods in the beach are bonuses that make you drool unnoticed. Intimacy between two guys here is not something that goes with sexual pleasure. There is pure friendship and connection beyond sexuality and carnal cravings. That's why, I watched this movie four times in a month.
5. Beautiful Boxer (Thailand)
Based on a true story on the life Nong Toom, a transgender muai thai boxing champion in Thailand, this is one gay movie, you shouldn't miss. The tag line: He fights like a man to become a woman" is but fitting to sum up his life. He must only be the only kickboxer in the world whose punches are stronger when he wears a make-up as if he's on his way to join a beauty pageant.
6. The Blossoming of Maximo Oliveros (Philippines)
IN most gay movies you have seen, a 12-year old gay guy is depicted as closet or, at least, having troubles coming out. Not this film. Maximo is a transgender at 12 and walks the street slums of the third world like a beauty queen, takes care of his brothers and father like he's the woman in the family. He's the heart of the family of men around him. Then, he falls in-love to a young, handsome cop. And the conflict begins.... Nathan Lopez as Maximo is superb in his role and the rest of the cast. It's raw, illuminating, moving and for sure, the same feeling Maximo has for his first love will take you back to the time when you were in-love for the first time.
7. The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Dessert (Australia)
Campy, fabulous and colorful! Boy, oh, boy! This is, perhaps, the best gay musical/adventure in the 20th century! Everything gay is there and the fabulous costumes are there to tantalize you visually. The acting performances of the hetero guys (in real life) is beyond your average flamboyant gay guy! They're believable, incredible and watching it once is NEVER enough! And, oh, how would you like to be someone with a cock with a frock in a rock? The amazing Australian outback is the backdrop of this movie.
8. Wedding Banquet (Taiwan / USA)
Hearty and poignant, this comedy about a gay couple (Taiwanese and American) who fooled the former's parents into believing that they're just "friends" is something really worth watching for. Cultures clash and conflicts arise but it all end up to love and understanding. The comedy part is nicely done and it makes you say "It's ridiculous" but, then, there's an amount of truth, reality to the absurdity of the situation.
9. Milk (USA)
Sean Penn is super, super excellent in this biographical movie of Harvey Milk--whose life helped shaped American politics for gay rights. This is a film that reminds everyone of us the fight fought by those ahead of us, thus, we shouldn't forget their sacrifices--and that we should never give up for equal rights for the LGBT communities. The film clearly depicts the time in the 70's.
10. UNDERTOW - (Peru)
This is a story of three lives in a super conservative coastal town in Peru. Is it really possible to love two hearts equally? A bisexual man is thorn between his affection for the wife who carries his child and the gay artist who he loves and sees in clandestine meetings.
What's yours? Would love to hear yours. Let me know and I'll publish it here.