After a bit of a dry stretch, LGBT characters are once again returning to cinemas, and there are several things worth keeping an eye out for, writes Jack Cline.
If you haven’t yet seen Call Me By Your Name (out now), it’s one of the year’s must-see movies – a sensitive exploration of the dawning of sexuality set in a picturesque corner of Italy. It stars Armie Hammer and rising star Timothee Chalamet. And next week, hot young British actor Harrison Dickinson makes his astonishing debut as the lead in Beach Rats (out 24 Nov), playing a closeted teen in suburban New York who isn’t quite sure how to express his deep yearning for men. It’s sexy and beautifully observed. Both films are complex and unpredictable, refusing to play by the rules of gay cinema.
Three films in cinemas now feature feisty queer girls in ways that are entertaining for boys as well. Professor Marston and the Wonder Women is about the threesome that created the iconic comic book superhero, and it stars out actor Luke Evans. The Party is a ripping British black comedy about politics and relationships with an ace cast including Patricia Clarkson, Kristin Scott Thomas and Emily Mortimer as a lesbian pregnant with triplets. And from Norway, Thelma is a fiendishly original coming-of-age thriller about a teen with a startling gift.
And finally, here are some awards season movies that we’ll be hearing a lot about over the coming months. Some are taking their time to get to UK cinemas, but it’s worth the wait. Martin McDonagh’s Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (Jan) has an almost unspoken gay twist that adds another layer of meaning to a blackly comical thriller as fierce Frances McDormand takes on racist cop Sam Rockwell. Guillermo Del Toro’s The Shape of Water (Feb) features Richard Jenkins as a gay man who can’t even speak those words in a remarkable fantasy about outsiders in 1950s America. Chile’s candidate for the Oscar, A Fantastic Woman (Mar) is the drop-dead gorgeous story of a trans woman who refuses to give in to bigotry. And France’s Oscar contender will be 120 Beats per Minute (Apr) a devastatingly moving account of romance among AIDS activists in 1990s Paris.