Discover the top 10 quality queer films to look forward to in 2018
The past few years have been solid for queer cinema, from the release of Oscar-nominated Call Me by Your Name, to 2017 Best Picture winner Moonlight, to breakthrough hit God’s Own Country, to Sean Baker’s Tangerine – the list goes on.
It looks like Hollywood will be taking on the demographic further this year with the release of a bundle of exciting films that delve deeper into the queer experience and celebrate the LGBTQI community. Here’s FD’s picks of the top ten queer movies to look forward to in 2018:
Hailed as “trans cinema’s breakthrough moment”, Sebastián Lelio’s Best Foreign Language Oscar nominee, A Fantastic Woman follows Marina (Daniela Vega), a waitress and singer whose life is thrown into array by the death of her older boyfriend (Francisco Reyes). Instead of giving up hope, Marina is forced to confront his family & society, and fight to show them who she is: complex, strong, forthright, fantastic.
Sadly, two Eastern Cape movie houses have postponed the release of Inxeba as several groups threatened to picket and boycott its screening. However, the film has found its audience elsewhere, with the South African feature from John Trengove winning the Sutherland Award for best debut feature. The narrative focuses on closeted sexuality set in the remote mountains of Eastern Cape, looking at the customs and practices of the Xhosa community with extraordinary authenticity.
The man of the moment, Sebastián Lelio, strikes again with his drama based on the novel by Naomi Alderman. Starring Rachel Weisz (The Lobster) and Rachel McAdams (The Notebook), the story is set in an orthodox Jewish community in London, focusing on a woman who stirs things up when her relationship with an old friend progresses into something more.
Tackling the ever-controversial concept of gay conversion camps, the Sundance-hit indie from writer & director Desiree Akhavan is adapted from Emily Danforth’s coming-of-age novel about a girl who is sent to a conversion center after being caught hooking up with the prom queen. Starring Chloë Grace Moretz (Let Me In) as the orphaned high school junior who develops mutual feelings for a girl she meets at Sunday school.
Chanya Button’s Vita and Virginia tells the fascinating true story of the relationship and love affair between Vita Sackville-West and Virginia Woolf. Definitely one for the modernist literary fans out there, this beautifully told story of female desire and sexuality is enjoyable enough on its own terms. To the lighthouse, we go!
This one’s a non-fiction exploration of the Mormon Church and its disapproval of homosexuality. In light of a rising suicide rate among teens in Utah, Believer sees Imagine Dragons’ Mormon frontman Dan Reynolds take on a new mission to explore how the Church treats its LGBTQ members. As he delves deeper into the Church’s policies, the singer is taken down an unexpected path.
Our favourite misfit actor, Alex Lawther (The End of the F***ing World), is back on the big screen as a glitter-bedecked, crossdressing teen sent away by his mother (Bette Midler) to live with his father (Larry Pine), where he’s forced to attend a straitlaced school. The Adam Ant-esque Billy Bloom is the coolest of the cool and, undaunted by the bullies who don’t understand his style, Billy makes a truly fabulous run for homecoming queen. Directed by Trudie Styler, this is a definite pick for any misfits and oddballs who feel they just don’t belong.
Saturday Church has been described as Moonlight meets La La Land, so you know you’re in for an interesting ride. Writer & director Damon Cardasis’s debut feature uses song & dance to mark out the exploration of sexuality and gender identity of a Bronx teenage boy, played with subdued intensity by Luka Kain.
This comedy from Rhys Ernst follows the story of a teen (Nicholas Alexander) who spends the summer in New York City with his older sister, an active member of the city’s lesbian and trans activist scene. Upon meeting the girl of his dreams, she mistakes him for being trans, and he can’t find a way to break the truth to her. Awkward!
Another 2018 film tackling the tricky subject of gay conversion therapy, this drama is one of 2018’s most hotly anticipated queer films so far. The plotline follows teenage Conley (Lucas Hedges), sent to a conversion camp by his fundamentalist Christian parents, played by Nicole Kidman (The Beguiled) and Russell Crowe (The Mummy). Based on Garrard Conley’s memoir, Boy Erased will likely prove to be a big conversation topic upon its release later this year.