The Lesbian-themed movies I have seen (from best to worst)

by TMMVDS | created - 14 Feb 2012 | updated - 5 months ago | Public

Excluding tv-series.

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1. Carol (2015)

R | 118 min | Drama, Romance

94 Metascore

An aspiring photographer develops an intimate relationship with an older woman in 1950s New York.

Director: Todd Haynes | Stars: Cate Blanchett, Rooney Mara, Sarah Paulson, Kyle Chandler

Votes: 107,757 | Gross: $12.71M

Really the first first-rate lesbian film made in my opinion. Production values and budget are here totally something else than those typical indie films and that certainly adds more quality. Great cast, great music, great atmosphere, great everything.

2. Cloudburst (2011)

Unrated | 93 min | Adventure, Comedy, Drama

A lesbian couple escape from their nursing home and head up to Canada to get married. Along the way, they pick up a young, male hitchhiker.

Director: Thom Fitzgerald | Stars: Olympia Dukakis, Brenda Fricker, Kristin Booth, Michael McPhee

Votes: 1,781

Wonderful actors in a bittersweet story which is so real that you can taste it. The raunchiness is not maybe everybody's cup of tea, but I love this drama with a great sense of humour.

3. Albert Nobbs (2011)

R | 113 min | Drama, Romance

57 Metascore

Albert Nobbs struggles to survive in late 19th-century Ireland, where women aren't encouraged to be independent. Posing as a man so she can work as a butler in Dublin's most elegant hotel, Albert meets a handsome painter and looks to escape the lie she has been living.

Director: Rodrigo García | Stars: Glenn Close, Mia Wasikowska, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Antonia Campbell-Hughes

Votes: 22,791 | Gross: $3.01M

This movie is not on many lesbian lists here and I wonder why. These brave bygone era women dressed as a man for various reasons but as this movie shows, they could also be with other women freely because of that. And Albert Nobbs handles this subject admirably. Kudos for Glenn Close and Janet McTeer.

4. Kiss Me (2011)

Not Rated | 105 min | Drama, Romance

A young woman engaged to be married finds herself in an affair with her soon-to-be stepmother's lesbian daughter.

Director: Alexandra-Therese Keining | Stars: Ruth Vega Fernandez, Liv Mjönes, Krister Henriksson, Lena Endre

Votes: 8,910

Well done, Swedes. Reflective, believable and very well done drama with enough hotness to warm even the coldest winter day. This is what I want from a Lesbian film, precisely.

5. Aimee & Jaguar (1999)

Not Rated | 125 min | Biography, Drama, Romance

72 Metascore

In 1943 Berlin, a Nazi officer's wife meets and starts a passionate affair with a Jewish woman.

Director: Max Färberböck | Stars: Maria Schrader, Juliane Köhler, Johanna Wokalek, Heike Makatsch

Votes: 5,917 | Gross: $0.93M

Possibly the most ambitious film here. The subject matter (Nazis, Jews, gays) is destined to make an impact, and when the historical and aesthetic values are high, there's not much to complain. Also inspired me to know more about the real Aimée & Jaguar.

6. Reaching for the Moon (2013)

Not Rated | 118 min | Biography, Drama, Romance

44 Metascore

A chronicle of the tragic love affair between American poet Elizabeth Bishop and Brazilian architect Lota de Macedo Soares.

Director: Bruno Barreto | Stars: Glória Pires, Miranda Otto, Tracy Middendorf, Marcello Airoldi

Votes: 2,706 | Gross: $0.04M

Complicated relationships and past traumas between women I knew nothing about beforehand. Executed and acted very well, this piece of real history is one of the best lesbian-themed films around.

7. Die Konkurrentin (1997 TV Movie)

90 min | Drama

Katharina, a successful management consultant, has to face Maren as a new assistant. The young woman is very ambitious but has been employed by junior Boss Grosser to spoil Katharina's ... See full summary »

Director: Dagmar Hirtz | Stars: Charlotte Schwab, Ann-Kathrin Kramer, Peter Lerchbaumer, Ezard Haußmann

Votes: 181

"This is your life. In the end, you're only accountable for yourself". That intelligent remark sums up well this drama with a dose of humor with it. Business environment wasn't ideal setting for me, but enjoyable (and the most enjoyable leading ladies) flick on the whole.

8. Me, Myself & Her (2015)

Not Rated | 102 min | Comedy, Romance

Marina and Federica have been together for five years now, they share the same apartment, bed, face cream, they laugh, they fight, but even so sometimes they are not sure if they're a couple or not.

Director: Maria Sole Tognazzi | Stars: Margherita Buy, Sabrina Ferilli, Fausto Maria Sciarappa, Alessia Barela

Votes: 667

To be or not to be... in a relationship with a woman? Fast-paced, lively and mature film with a refreshing approach and dose of witty humor. And the actresses are top notch, especially Sabrina Ferilli.

9. Desert Hearts (1985)

R | 91 min | Drama, Romance

A woman on the precipice of divorce becomes drawn to a ranchowner's daughter.

Director: Donna Deitch | Stars: Helen Shaver, Patricia Charbonneau, Audra Lindley, Andra Akers

Votes: 4,706 | Gross: $2.49M

Groundbreaking film, and includes a love scene which still is one of the boldest ones out there. A bit too slow going to be really entertaining, but this is the one film every lesbian should (and probably have) watch.

10. The Secret Diaries of Miss Anne Lister (2010 TV Movie)

TV-14 | 92 min | Biography, Drama, Romance

A look at the life of 19th century Yorkshire landowner Anne Lister (1791-1840), who lived openly as a lesbian and kept diaries chronicling the details of her daily life.

Director: James Kent | Stars: Maxine Peake, Anna Madeley, Susan Lynch, Christine Bottomley

Votes: 1,764

Good tv-movie (the TV-series Gentleman Jack took this story to a new level), and highly unusual experience to witness so modern character at the eve of Victorian era. Definitely recommended, even more because this is a true story.

11. Combats de femme (1997– )
Episode: Un amour de femme (2001)

89 min

A lonely wife secretly starts an affair with a female dance teacher, at the distress of her husband.

Director: Sylvie Verheyde | Stars: Hélène Fillières, Raffaëla Anderson, Anthony Delon, Jeannick Gravelines

Votes: 605

A reflective film with an atmosphere and background music all of its own. Lot is happening without much words or explanations, and the two main actresses are well worth of your time.

12. Imagine Me & You (2005)

R | 90 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

49 Metascore

A newlywed bride becomes infatuated with another woman who questions her sexual orientation, promoting a stir among the bride's family and friends.

Director: Ol Parker | Stars: Piper Perabo, Lena Headey, Matthew Goode, Celia Imrie

Votes: 28,625 | Gross: $0.67M

Very Richard Curtis-like romantic comedy. Compared to the best ones he has made, this has no chance, but thanks to (again) lovely leading ladies and great overall cast, it has enough appeal to more than one viewing.

13. Summertime (2015)

Not Rated | 105 min | Drama, Romance

72 Metascore

There was little chance, in the year 1971, that Carole, a Paris Spanish teacher and feminist militant, would ever meet Delphine, the daughter of a couple of Limousin farmers. But they did ... See full summary »

Director: Catherine Corsini | Stars: Cécile de France, Izïa Higelin, Noémie Lvovsky, Jean-Henri Compère

Votes: 3,525 | Gross: $0.04M

City vs. countryside, freedom vs. duty, liberation vs. convention. What wins and does it matter in the end? This time travel to the 70's flows like water and offers plenty of erotica and natural beauty in its various forms.

14. Tell It to the Bees (2018)

TV-MA | 108 min | Drama, Romance

50 Metascore

In 1950s small town Britain, a doctor develops a relationship with her young patient's mother.

Director: Annabel Jankel | Stars: Billy Boyd, Gregor Selkirk, Anna Paquin, Euan Mason

Votes: 2,414

Prejudice and heartache in 1950's Scotland, but in the end hope beckons. Very nice movie with not that much 'new things' in this time and age, but who cares. Only minus is some of the actors' thick Scottish accent which can be hard to understand.

15. I Can't Think Straight (2008)

PG-13 | 82 min | Drama, Romance

A young woman engaged to be married finds her life changed forever when she meets her best friend's girlfriend.

Director: Shamim Sarif | Stars: Lisa Ray, Sheetal Sheth, Antonia Frering, Dalip Tahil

Votes: 7,444 | Gross: $0.04M

It hardly could be more of an eye candy than here, these two women are probably every lesbians ideal couple. The movie itself greatly improves with their presence, but has good enough story line to make it one of the best movies of its subject matter.

16. My Summer of Love (2004)

R | 86 min | Drama, Romance

82 Metascore

In the Yorkshire countryside, working-class tomboy Mona meets the exotic, pampered Tamsin. Over the summer season, the two young women discover they have much to teach one another, and much to explore together.

Director: Pawel Pawlikowski | Stars: Natalie Press, Emily Blunt, Paddy Considine, Dean Andrews

Votes: 19,029 | Gross: $0.99M

Interesting, different take on youthful love which is idealistic, confused and just can't last. Gorgeous scenery and gorgeous summer days and two outcasts in a world of their own.

17. Grandma (2015)

R | 79 min | Comedy, Drama

77 Metascore

A teenager facing an unplanned pregnancy seeks help from her acerbic grandmother, a woman who is long estranged from her daughter.

Director: Paul Weitz | Stars: Lily Tomlin, Julia Garner, Marcia Gay Harden, Judy Greer

Votes: 14,117 | Gross: $6.98M

The main theme here is teen abortion, not Lily Tomlin's failing lesbian affair, but it doesn't matter. This short study of three generations of women is interesting, well-written piece of cinema.

18. Kissing Jessica Stein (2001)

R | 97 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

72 Metascore

A woman searching for the perfect man instead discovers the perfect woman.

Director: Charles Herman-Wurmfeld | Stars: Jennifer Westfeldt, Heather Juergensen, Tovah Feldshuh, Esther Wurmfeld

Votes: 15,602 | Gross: $7.02M

Nice attempt from these two young ladies. Fun and also witty at times, and despite a bit unsatisfactory ending, has enough that urban New York charm (in the same vein of Woody Allen) to carry it through.

19. Snapshots (2018)

TV-MA | 95 min | Drama

63 Metascore

When a grandmother's secret past collides with her granddaughter's secret future and her daughter's angry present, can the love of three generations be enough to accept decades of deceit. With a simple roll of film it begins.

Director: Melanie Mayron | Stars: Piper Laurie, Brooke Adams, Emily Baldoni, Christopher McVay

Votes: 1,143

Lesbian love in the 60's. Grandma remembers when she sow her wild oats and more secrets comes to the surface. Very watchable drama between three generations of women.

20. The Kids Are All Right (2010)

R | 106 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

86 Metascore

Two children conceived by artificial insemination bring their biological father into their non-traditional family life.

Director: Lisa Cholodenko | Stars: Annette Bening, Julianne Moore, Mark Ruffalo, Mia Wasikowska

Votes: 122,813 | Gross: $20.81M

Authentic, believable look at the life of long-term lesbian couple with children - and with very famous actresses. Not bad film at all.

21. Tru Love (2013)

Not Rated | 94 min | Drama, Romance

A lesbian with commitment issues befriends a widowed mother who is visiting her workaholic daughter.

Directors: Kate Johnston, Shauna MacDonald | Stars: Kate Trotter, Peter MacNeill, Shauna MacDonald, Anna Cyzon

Votes: 610

A pleasant experience. This kind of small-scale dramas don't leave any deep marks, but have enough substance to keep you interested. Points for two lovely leading ladies and an intelligent (if at times a bit too laborious) dialogue.

22. The World Unseen (2007)

PG-13 | 93 min | Drama, Romance

A drama centered on two women who engage in a dangerous relationship during South Africa's apartheid era.

Director: Shamim Sarif | Stars: Lisa Ray, Sheetal Sheth, Parvin Dabas, Nandana Sen

Votes: 3,648 | Gross: $0.02M

Lisa Ray and Sheetal Sheth make magic again on the big screen, and really light up this otherwise quite average movie.

23. Blue Is the Warmest Colour (2013)

NC-17 | 180 min | Drama, Romance

88 Metascore

Adèle's life is changed when she meets Emma, a young woman with blue hair, who will allow her to discover desire and to assert herself as a woman and as an adult. In front of others, Adèle grows, seeks herself, loses herself, and ultimately finds herself through love and loss.

Director: Abdellatif Kechiche | Stars: Léa Seydoux, Adèle Exarchopoulos, Salim Kechiouche, Aurélien Recoing

Votes: 130,962 | Gross: $2.20M

Three hours of eating, talking of art and pretty graphic sex. Not the masterpiece for me like for so many other viewers, but still very natural, well made film.

24. Elena Undone (2010)

Not Rated | 111 min | Drama, Romance

Fate brings two diversely different women together, and sets them on a collision course that will shatter their preconceived notions about love, life and the power of one's soul.

Director: Nicole Conn | Stars: Necar Zadegan, Thunderbird Dinwiddie, Gary Weeks, Sam Harris

Votes: 5,006

When Elena Met Peyton. Great, believable lead actresses, especially Traci Dinwiddie, make this film better than it otherwise would have been. Annoying music, soppy handling and oh so typical American juxtaposition church vs. gays are especially the downfalls.

25. Daphne (2007 TV Movie)

90 min | Biography, Drama, Romance

Set during the years between the "Rebecca" trial and the writing of Du Maurier's short story "The Birds", including her relationship with her husband Frederick 'Boy' Browning, and her ... See full summary »

Director: Clare Beavan | Stars: Geraldine Somerville, Elizabeth McGovern, Janet McTeer, Andrew Havill

Votes: 388

Again true story, concentrating on novelist Daphne du Maurier's relationships with two women outside her marriage. Quite nicely done, but no satisfaction or happy endings.

26. Therese and Isabelle (1968)

Not Rated | 118 min | Drama, Romance

Two young girls experience awakening sexuality in the heated atmosphere of a Swiss girls' boarding school...

Director: Radley Metzger | Stars: Essy Persson, Anna Gaël, Barbara Laage, Anne Vernon

Votes: 539

Well...! Based on writer Violette Leduc's own experiences in boarding school, this is not "love that dare not speak its name", but "tell it like it is". It's all very 60's, no matter what decade they live in the movie, and all action happens in words. But props by presenting all so natural fashion without any shame or explanations.

27. When Night Is Falling (1995)

R | 94 min | Drama, Romance

An uptight and conservative woman, working on tenure as a literacy professor at a large urban university, finds herself strangely attracted to a free-spirited, liberal woman who works at a local carnival that comes to town.

Director: Patricia Rozema | Stars: Pascale Bussières, Rachael Crawford, Henry Czerny, David Fox

Votes: 6,372 | Gross: $1.19M

Too artsy-fartsy for my taste, but the bold and beautiful love scenes makes it worth watching.

28. The Night Watch (2011 TV Movie)

89 min | Drama, Romance, War

In post-war London, Viv Pearce is dating Reggie and runs a dating bureau with Helen Giniver, who lives with her older lover, authoress Julia Standing. Viv's younger brother Duncan, a gay ... See full summary »

Director: Richard Laxton | Stars: Jenna Augen, Neal Barry, Claudie Blakley, Lucy Briers

Votes: 812

After great "Tipping the Velvet", this is my second peek at Sarah Waters' novels. Fairly good, but grim story of straight, gay and lesbian relationships during and after WWII. Extra lenght could have mean some extra interest.

29. A Village Affair (1995 TV Movie)

Not Rated | 101 min | Drama, Romance

Alice has married the rich but boring Martin. When they move to a small village Martin starts flirting with Clodagh, but she is more interested in his wife Alice.

Director: Moira Armstrong | Stars: Sophie Ward, Kerry Fox, Nathaniel Parker, Jeremy Northam

Votes: 485

This movie is pretty good until the hysterical ending. Plus the two leading ladies have no chemistry at all.

30. But I'm a Cheerleader (1999)

R | 85 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

39 Metascore

A naive teenager is sent to rehab camp when her straitlaced parents and friends suspect her of being a lesbian.

Director: Jamie Babbit | Stars: Natasha Lyonne, Clea DuVall, Michelle Williams, Brandt Wille

Votes: 24,409 | Gross: $2.21M

Fun and campy. The whole thing could be just a one big tasteless joke, but the script is good enough to carry the movie. The chemistry is completely missing, though, I would never imagine a more unsuitable pair than these two women.

31. The Sea Purple (2009)

Not Rated | 105 min | Drama, History, Romance

Nothing - not her father, not the church - can stop unruly Angela from being with her childhood best friend turned great love, Sara. Based on a true story, Viola di mare, presents a ... See full summary »

Director: Donatella Maiorca | Stars: Valeria Solarino, Isabella Ragonese, Ennio Fantastichini, Giselda Volodi

Votes: 1,367

Quite harsh look on lesbian life in the 19th Century Italy. Raw feelings and desperation, but not much happiness.

32. Lianna (1983)

R | 110 min | Drama, Romance

A happily married woman comes to realize herself of being a repressed lesbian after she has an affair with a female college professor, and then tries to come to terms with her newfound lifestyle.

Director: John Sayles | Stars: Linda Griffiths, Jane Hallaren, Jon DeVries, Jo Henderson

Votes: 1,497 | Gross: $1.50M

Is this the first real lesbian movie? (No, as I have found out) Pretty realistic and modern look to the lesbian world and considering this is made thirty years ago, it is really brave film. Not as interesting or entertaning as it could have been, though.

33. Bandaged (2009)

92 min | Mystery, Romance, Thriller

Since his wife's death, Arthur, a peculiar and severe surgeon, cloisters his teen daughter Lucille inside a strange mansion. Desperate, Lucille tries to commit suicide and ends up with her ... See full summary »

Director: Maria Beatty | Stars: Janna Lisa Dombrowsky, Hans Piesbergen, Susanne Sachße, Martine Erhel

Votes: 353

Scientific experiments, English with an accent, gloomy piano music: maybe not much as a movie (some strange tale about a patient and her recovery) but the main attraction here are the sensual, erotic scenes between the patient and her caregiver.

34. Een vrouw als Eva (1979)

113 min | Drama

Young mother of two Eva is send on holiday to France by her husband to relief her stress. There she meets lesbian Liliane who lives in a commune.

Director: Nouchka van Brakel | Stars: Monique van de Ven, Maria Schneider, Marijke Merckens, Peter Faber

Votes: 274

It figures that Dutch made it all look so natural even in 1979. Despite being a film from my early childhood, dated is not the word here. Very sensible, maybe even too sensible [read: dry] look on woman's life who finally founds her real voice and wants to act on it. True story.

35. Unexpected (2014 TV Movie)

87 min | Drama, Romance

Marie is a successful designer and has a loving husband and two children. But fate offers more. When she meets the fiancée of their friend Dom, the two women fall for each other. This comes... See full summary »

Director: Rainer Kaufmann | Stars: Ina Weisse, Erika Marozsán, Ulrich Noethen, Marc Hosemann

Votes: 365

You can't have your cake and eat it too, or torn between two loves, the old and the new. Quick passion in a quick movie, which managed to left me somewhat cold. Similarities to Kiss Me are notable.

36. Bye Bye Blondie (2012)

87 min | Comedy, Drama

A Love Story Of Two Women Who meet up in their late forties and attempt to retrieve the romance they had in their youth.

Director: Virginie Despentes | Stars: Emmanuelle Béart, Béatrice Dalle, Soko, Clara Ponsot

Votes: 592

Well, it's different. This movie has a gloomy subject matter but has interesting elements. Not your typical lesbian romance for sure.

37. The Incredibly True Adventure of Two Girls in Love (1995)

R | 94 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

An adventurous love story between two young women of different social and economic backgrounds who find themselves going through all the typical struggles of a new romance.

Director: Maria Maggenti | Stars: Laurel Holloman, Nicole Ari Parker, Maggie Moore, Kate Stafford

Votes: 4,159 | Gross: $1.98M

Watching these girls half my age isn't current for me anymore, so their schoolgirlish antics didn't really interested me. Not bad movie at all, just juvenile.

38. Out of Season (1998)

98 min | Drama, Romance

41 Metascore

A sexy, romance about two woman who unexpectedly fall in love during a winter's stay in the resort town of Cape May.

Director: Jeanette L. Buck | Stars: Laura Carson, Rusty Clauss, Nancy Daly, Nasser Faris

Votes: 141

Nice little movie to watch once, but lacks any real interest. As realistic as a film made in US can be.

39. If These Walls Could Talk 2 (2000 TV Movie)

R | 96 min | Drama, Romance

Trio of stories about lesbian couples in three different decades.

Directors: Jane Anderson, Martha Coolidge, Anne Heche | Stars: Vanessa Redgrave, Marian Seldes, Paul Giamatti, Elizabeth Perkins

Votes: 6,407

Three different stories, all of them quite lame. It's been awhile since I saw this, but see it again isn't in my agenda.

40. Family Pack (2000)

98 min | Drama

July 1969 . After two years spent in Canada, Sacha is back in her small Belgian town. She has two disturbing news to break to her family : the first one is that instead of being married - ... See full summary »

Director: Chris Vander Stappen | Stars: Marie Bunel, Hélène Vincent, Tsilla Chelton, Mimie Mathy

Votes: 138

It's 1969 in Belgium and the eve of Moon landing. But the main theme is: will she come out as a lesbian to her family and tell she's not the doctor her mother desperately wants her to be. Curious, original film, but in parts confusing and repetitive and altogether too far from my liking zone.

41. I've Heard the Mermaids Singing (1987)

R | 81 min | Comedy, Drama

Scatterbrained Polly gets a job as a secretary in Gabrielle's art gallery. Polly aspires to be a professional photographer, and idolizes Gabrielle for her artistic ability. When Gabrielle ... See full summary »

Director: Patricia Rozema | Stars: Sheila McCarthy, Paule Baillargeon, Ann-Marie MacDonald, Richard Monette

Votes: 1,351 | Gross: $1.41M

I don't know if you should call this strictly a lesbian movie, but in any case, it doesn't work. Uninteresting and odd, with no sensible plot.

42. Revoir Julie (1998)

92 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

Two friends meet after 15 years. One of them is in love with the other. One night she comes clean and is rebuffed by her shocked friend - at first.

Director: Jeanne Crépeau | Stars: Dominique Leduc, Stephanie Morgenstern, Marcel Sabourin, Muriel Dutil

Votes: 156

I saw this with abysmal subtitles, so there maybe was more to it than I realized. Or maybe not. Lots of singing, dancing and nonexistent plot didn't grab my attention that much. Light and harmless film overall which doesn't hurt anybody.

43. Better Than Chocolate (1999)

R | 101 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

Maggie, 19, works at a lesbian/LGBT bookstore. Her mom's getting divorced and has invited herself to stay with Maggie. Maggie hasn't told her, she's lesbian. Her new girlfriend moves in as well.

Director: Anne Wheeler | Stars: Wendy Crewson, Karyn Dwyer, Christina Cox, Ann-Marie MacDonald

Votes: 7,628 | Gross: $2.01M

Well, I would choose chocolate in any day! Unbelievable, campy and annoying film, that is hard to watch all the way through.

44. French Twist (1995)

R | 104 min | Comedy

After learning of her husband's infidelities, a housewife invites an itinerant lesbian to move in with them. None of their lives will ever be the same again.

Director: Josiane Balasko | Stars: Victoria Abril, Josiane Balasko, Alain Chabat, Ticky Holgado

Votes: 4,442 | Gross: $1.40M

The worst lesbian film I have seen or ever I'm likely to see. Obnoxious farce which is not funny, just pathetic.

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