10

Lesbian Films to Watch for Lesbian Visibility Week

21 min read

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It’s Lesbian Visibility Week!!!

But wait… what IS Lesbian Visibility Week? The entire week is dedicated to celebrate lesbians, promoting solidarity with all LGBTQ women and non-binary folks in the queer community. Interestingly, it was originally celebrated during July West Hollywood from 1990-92. However in 2020, backed by Diva magazine, the weeklong celebration was moved to coincide with Lesbian Visibility Day, an annual celebratory day in the UK for lesbians on April 26 that itself dates back to 2008.

Today, both Lesbian Visibility Day and the entire Lesbian Visibility Week takes the two-fold goal of celebrating lesbians while also raising awareness to the discrimination still faced by lesbians. (Which unfortunately sometimes comes from within the LGBTQ community!)

Lesbians are a key aspect of the Queer community!⁠

Here are Queer Film Reviews, I celebrate ALL of us on the spectrum. However, as a cis white gay male, I realize that sometimes I am not the best spokesperson for others in the community. Yet one important thing to remember during Lesbian Visibility Week (and ALL of the other special days among our community) is that those of us who may have a stronger voice MUST stand beside those who don’t. It’s our duty to elevate their causes, concerns, and even if all we do is provide support – that’s just as important.

Thankfully, there are a handful of folks who ARE the perfect role models to look towards for answers, the ideal support, and more. Some of the notable folks include LesbianVisibilityWeek.com in the UK, The Pink News, and of course – Diva Magazine itself.

Definitely go check out these amazing resources to learn more about Lesbian Visibility Week!


But you came here for some Lesbian FILMS to celebrate Lesbian Visibility Week, didn’t you!

Well, you’re in luck! I’ve gathered together TEN Lesbian films & shorts for you to enjoy this week. (Or anytime you’re looking for a good lesbian or sapphic film!)

There’s a good variety of topics on this list, including some cult classics, some lesser known films, newer releases, and I’ve even thrown in a couple of lesbian short films. (For those of you with limited time!) Now, I have written full, in-depth reviews for some of these films – but to help you, the rest include my quick thoughts about the lesbian film.

Before we get to the full list though, I want to draw attention to an amazing place you can WATCH many of these lesbian films:

Logo for Lesflicks, title "Lesflicks" in red letters above a film strip with rainbow colored inserts.

Lesflicks is a lesbian-owned, independent platform who provide authentic sapphic stories – the largest collection of them among ALL streaming platforms! Many of the lesbian films, shorts, and series on Lesflicks are also EXCLUSIVE to Lesflicks – you won’t find them anywhere else. They offer a a couple different plans for you to choose from, but their true value is the amazing sapphic content found on their platform.

And yes, the button below is an affiliate link which gives me an extra free month – BUT I still pay my own membership! They’re truly worth it. But don’t take my word, go check them out and then decide. (Hint: you can find FIVE of the films below on Lesflicks!)

Watch/Stream/Rent HUNDREDS of

Sapphic Films, Shorts, & Series on Lesflicks!

In case you’re not interested in Lesflicks BUT already have Amazon Prime, then you also have FREE access to SEVEN of these films – and MORE! – via Prime Video!
(Click HERE if you are a new subscriber to Prime Video.)

Anyways, enough rambling! Scroll through this list of 10 Lesbian Films to Watch for Lesbian Visibility Week. For the films I’ve published a full, in-depth review, feel free to read it too if it’ll help you decide!
(Click on the film’s title or the film poster to read the full review.)

But most importantly – ENJOY!

10 10 Lesbian Films to Watch for Lesbian Visibility Week

Megan (Natasha Lyonne) is a normal American girl who’s one of the best cheerleaders on the team, along with having the captain of the football team as the perfect boyfriend, but there are some very unnormal things about her, including the fact that she doesn’t like kissing her boyfriend, has posters of girls in her locker and at home, and likes listening to Melissa Ethridge. Does this mean that the normal Megan may, in fact, be… a lesbian?!?! Concerned parents and friends send her to True Directions, a gay-gone-straight camp led by the well-meaning yet totally insane Mary (Cathy Moriarty) and the “ex-gay” counselor Mike (RuPaul).

Frankly, I’m not sure there could ever be a campier & more satirical queer comedy film than “But I’m A Cheerleader”! Despite being Writer/Director ‘s directorial debut, this film is quite a gem and is queer in every way possible. The plot mocks heteronormativity from the conversion therapy camp, to the “lessons” taught on how to be straight, and even down to the gender-based colour scheme of the dreamlike set. And we cannot ignore the amazingly talented (and very queer!) cast that bring these characters to life. Don’t get me wrong, this queer comedy has some issue – especially with the pacing. But if you’re after an iconic queer & lesbian film that makes you laugh at the absurdity of conversion therapy, check out “But I’m A Cheerleader”!

Watch “But I’m A Cheerleader” on Amazon, Prime Video, or Plex.

Bellamy’s having the worst day: she’s being deported from the country, her girlfriend dumped her, she can’t access her bank account, and her fitted sheet just won’t fold. Now watch her make it worse.

We’ve all had to deal with customer service support where we are constantly put on hold, fighting to get something fixed or changed, and more. It is utterly frustrating and feels like we’re pulling out our hair trying to resolve issues. “How To Fold A Fitted Sheet” is everything a short film should be. It’s captivating, tells the story succinctly, our character is relatable for nearly everyone, and overall is quality work. I just wish that this film’s major storyline flaw had been better written, because that one scene ruined the film for me. Most folks probably wouldn’t have noticed or cannot fully understand why that one moment is so wrong. But even with that aside, I still strongly encourage you to watch “How To Fold A Fitted Sheet”. If you’ve ever had to call up customer support for anything, you’ll easily relate to Bellamy’s experience and frustration!

Read my full review of this queer lesbian short HERE.

Watch “How To Fold A Fitted Sheet” on Prime Video, Fearless, and Lesflicks.

4.0

Not long after moving into her own place, Maggie (Karyn Dwyer) finds herself with two unsolicited roommates: her recently divorced mother, Lila (Wendy Crewson), and her young brother (Kevin Mundy). The timing is especially bad, considering Maggie has fallen hard for an attractive woman, Kim (Christina Cox), only hours before they move in. What could be a nonissue becomes increasingly complicated — since Maggie’s family is unaware of her sexual orientation, and Maggie is not open to sharing that information.

For years, “Better Than Chocolate” was one of the few lesbian films that I had watched early on and made it into my collection. Perhaps it was my collegiate group of friends regularly watching and talking about the film. Or perhaps that’s because was a queer comedy that made waves when it came out in 1999. But there’s no question that this is quite a cute and romantic lesbian film! Is it perfect? Not exactly. There is a LOT to this story, with multiple side-stories intertwining – it’s easy to get lost a bit and as such, some characters may come across as superficial. However, amid the cliche’s (which are a tad dated twenty years later) is a rather broad and inclusive spectrum of difficulties that LGBTQ folks face: transphobia, homophobia, government censorship of “obscene” material, and more. All of this is woven into a slightly fantastical & idealistic film that nails some great comedy and is simply a fun queer comedy film to watch. If you have not yet seen “Better Than Chocolate”, I highly recommend it!

Watch “Better Than Chocolate” on Amazon or Prime Video.

After being discovered trying to escape, a woman must survive the night with her abusive girlfriend.

Wow – Just wow! “Silence” is a powerful queer short film that draws you in and keeps you on edge all the way till the end. Written and directed by Hamish Downie and inspired by personal events from his own life, this is a film that will NOT remain silent; it’s power speaks volumes on the poignant topic – even though not a single word is uttered in the five minute short! So what makes this queer short film such a powerhouse? It’s all in how the film succinctly deals with the dark and oft unspoken topic of partner abuse. “Silence” beautifully, and silently, shows the horrors of spousal abuse while also giving our victim that spark of hope as she escapes to her freedom.

Read my full review of this queer lesbian short HERE.

Watch “Silence” on Fearless and Lesflicks.

4.0

When Dot’s (Brenda Fricker) granddaughter puts her into a nursing home, Stella (Olympia Dukakis) stages a breakout, and takes Dot to Canada so they can get married. They pick up a hitchhiker along the way.

Based off the stage play of the same name, “Cloudburst” already had me quite intrigued despite the very short synopsis. After all, what’s more adventurous than an elderly lesbian couple breaking out of a nursing home to go get married! However, what I did not expect was how much I truly enjoyed watching this queer adventure film, which is equally a powerful queer romance. Part of me would like to think that such an adventurous and almost crazy plot would be entirely fictional today. However, the sad truth is that many elderly queer folk are having to deal with situations like the one set up in this film. Yet watching the loving romance between Stella, with her brash, sailor-mouth butch lesbian character, and Dot’s partially blind yet endearing grandmother and devoted partner is simply beautiful. “Cloudburst” is a must watch!

Watch “Cloudburst” on Amazon or Prime Video.

“The Date” is the story of two women looking for love in the dating world of the 21st century.

Ah, that first date – finally meeting that special person you’ve been flirting with for the first time. There’s a hint of caution and unease, however when things go well the fade away into an enjoyable evening. That’s what “The Date” has to offer: a cute, lesbian dating story. Short, sweet, with a dash of romance, I’m sure you’ll enjoy this queer short film from Emmalie El Fadli.

Read my full review of this queer lesbian short HERE.

Watch “The Date” on Prime Video and Lesflicks.

4.0

3.0

When a prominent lesbian couple adopts a child diagnosed with a genetic predisposition for violence, they must contend with their hard-lined stance on acceptance while attempting to raise the perfect family in the spotlight.

Writer/Producer Jennifer Cooney tackled a very specific and unique focus with “Rain Beau’s End” – and she took a cinematic gamble that is worth reviewing. But because of that gamble and a few other issues, I had a hard time connecting to the story even though it has charm and some great moments. Despite my dislike of some of the film’s key elements, there are many other reviewers who found the risky storytelling aspect of excluding Beau entirely to be commendable. In the end, the best way to determine if “Rain Beau’s End” is a film that YOU would enjoy watching is to simply go watch it yourself! At present, it’s only available to stream on Lesflicks – but they are a great VOD platform that centers on sapphic films, shorts, & series. Go check them out today – and watch “Rain Beau’s End”!

Read my full review of this lesbian film HERE.

Watch “Rain Beau’s End” on Lesflicks.

A timid high school girl reveals her truth during the most important night of the year.

Ah, Senior Prom. A night that many LGBTQ folks either loved because they could fully express themselves, or they dreaded. For Lauren, it’s actually both! Despite going with her best friend “Flash”, she actually changes into a tux and meets up with her crush – Sam. But the two girls sharing their first kiss is not the only dramatic twist of this queer short! Although decently shot and featuring a talented cast that creates a cute cohesive, I wasn’t a huge fan of “At Last”. It’s really two different storylines within the same short, and because of that the timing felt off. However, it’s still a cute & charming story of two lesbian teenagers sharing their prom night together. It’s still making the film circuit rounds, but I encourage you to find a way to watch this Queer short film!

Read my full review of this queer lesbian short HERE.

Watch “At Last” on Prime Video and HBO Max.

3.5

"Aimée & Jaguar" film poster

In 1943, while the Allies are bombing Berlin and the Gestapo is purging the capital of Jews, a dangerous love affair blossoms between two women. One of them, Lilly Wust (Juliane Köhler), married and the mother of four sons, enjoys the privileges of her stature as an exemplar of Nazi motherhood. For her, this affair will be the most decisive experience of her life. For the other woman, Felice Schragenheim (Maria Schrader), a Jewess and member of the underground, their love fuels her with the hope that she will survive.

Overall, I wasn’t a huge fan of “Aimée & Jaguar” – but I can’t quite pinpoint why. Told via flashbacks, the plot is a bit difficult to follow. Complicating things is the fact that it’s set during a very dangerous time in Berlin. Everyone is on edge, but for a Jew or for a homosexual – it’s deadly. The emotions within scenes change at the drop of a hat, often explosively. Juxtapositions, such as Lily’s explorations and newfound romance with a female lover set the building tension and plot onto a pedestal whose fall is inevitable – just like the fall of Berlin. This haunting queer war film not easy to watch, but we cannot disregard the importance of retelling the real-life romance between Lilly Wust and Felice Schragenheim. For that reason alone, this is a crucial queer film to watch.

Watch “Aimée & Jaguar” on Amazon and Prime Video.

It’s Valentine’s Day in the 1960s, and Kay and Rose recall when they first met and fell in love.

In a special treat for Valentine’s Day, this lesbian short film beautifully captures a couple’s love from their first meeting through to today. While it only lasts just over three minutes, it’s a refreshing message about love & commitment. Interestingly enough, no words are spoken! (Ok – all the dialogue is actually provided in a voiceover) “My Love” is the perfect little queer short for you to enjoy on this romantic holiday. If you need something sweet and romantic to rekindle an ongoing love, or perhaps if you are single & wish for a little boast in spirits – “My Love” is a perfect fit!

Read my full review of this queer lesbian short HERE.

Watch “My Love” on Lesflicks.

3.5

Final Thoughts

So what did you think about the 10 Lesbian Films to Watch for Lesbian Visibility Week that I’ve selected? Are some of them your favorites as well? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!

(Or you could Pin your favorite lesbian film to your Pinterest account to save for later!)

 

These were only 10 out of the MANY other amazing lesbian films out there – I just haven’t reviewed them all yet! Lesflicks is a GREAT place to start your search, as they focus on sapphic films. However, lesbian films can be found on Amazon, Prime Video, Fearless, and many other streaming sites online.

And remember – if I didn’t include your favorite lesbian film on this list or I haven’t had the chance to review it yet, let me know HERE. I will definitely add your favorite film to my database, and if I agree that it needs a full review, I can add it to my list!

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