Among the many movie titles you can watch on Amazon Prime Video is a diverse selection of LGBTQ films. Immerse yourself in historical documentaries about some of the pivotal figures from the community, or check out a touching, coming-of-age drama. It’s not easy to find some of these hidden gems, however. While you could scour everything Prime Video has to offer to find a good fit, we’re making it easy for you with a curated list of the best LGBTQ-themed movies you can find on Amazon.
Not to be confused with the recent Netflix original miniseries starring Ewan McGregor as the title character, this biographical documentary takes a different approach to re-telling the story of American fashion designer Roy Halston Frowick. Best known for frequenting Studio 54 with his many celebrity friends like Andy Warhol, Halston’s meteoric rise to fame was fuelled after he designed the now-iconic pillbox hat Jacqueline Kennedy wore to her husband President John F. Kennedy’s inauguration. The film mixes archival footage with commentary from those who knew him, such as Liza Minelli. If you’re into fashion and its storied history, this documentary makes for an entertaining watch.
Rotten Tomatoes: 77%
Stars: Liza Minennli, Marisa Berenson, Joel Schumacher, Naeem Khan, Pat Cleveland, Karen Bjornson
Director: Frederic Tcheng
Runtime: 119 minutes
Joris’ father died almost a decade ago, and while continuing to try and come to terms with the loss, a young Syrian refugee named Yad arrives in his life, working for his grandmother. Despite Joris’ conservative upbringing, he can’t deny the spark that exists between him and Yad, who quickly realizes that they aren’t “just friends” but share a much deeper — and romantic — bond. The hidden gem Dutch romantic comedy is part coming-of-age and part story of love that must defy the odds, familial pressures, and coming to terms with one’s true self.
Rotten Tomatoes: No Score
Stars: Majd Mardo, Josha Stradowski, Jenny Arean, Tanja Jess
Director: Ellen Smit
Runtime: 80 minutes
As an activist, a politician, and the first openly gay man elected to office in California, the late Harvey Milk was a gift to the struggle of the LGBTQ community to enjoy the rights it should never have had to fight for in the first place. Sean Penn brings the activist to life in Milk, following the eponymous hero from when he first decides to move from New York City to San Francisco to his assassination at the hands of Dan White (Josh Brolin). In between, we get an impressively accurate recreation of the times in which Milk lived, as well as a perfectly human portrayal of Milk’s political setbacks along with his victories, including defeating the infamous 1978 Briggs Initiative, which sought to ban gay men and lesbians from working in San Francisco public schools. Milk proved to be one of the darlings of the 81st Academy Awards. The film attracted eight nominations, including two wins — Penn for Best Actor and screenwriter Dustin Lance Black for Best Original Screenplay.
Rotten Tomatoes: 93%
Stars: Sean Penn, Josh Brolin, Emile Hirsch
Director: Gus Van Sant
Runtime: 128 minutes
In Amazon Prime’s original film Uncle Frank, Paul Bettany plays Frank Bledsoe — a man about to learn that the secrets we keep from our families can be both more and less important than we ever imagined. Set in the early ’70s, Uncle Frank finds its titular lead living with his lover, Walid (Peter Macdissi). Frank’s pretty sure no one in his South Carolinian family knows he’s gay, but that changes when his young niece, Beth (Sophia Lillis), pays him a surprise visit in New York and discovers her uncle’s true life. Matters are further complicated when news of the death of the family patriarch arrives. Frank and Beth set out on their own to South Carolina for the services, leaving Walid behind because Frank doesn’t want the rest of his family to discover his secret. Walid follows anyway, and the trio has a touching, funny journey to the funeral, where some shocking surprises await them.
Rotten Tomatoes: 77%
Stars: Paul Bettany, Sophia Lillis, Peter Macdissi
Director: Alan Ball
Runtime: 95 minutes
This historical comedy-drama is based on the true story of a group of lesbian and gay activists who banded together to raise money for families impacted by the British miners strike of 1984. The event eventually became known as the Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners campaign. While the help was initially unwelcome, the group addressed the homophobia head on to dispel myths and preconceived notions, finding unlikely allies in the small-town miners and their families. Nominated for a Golden Globe, the film has been universally praised and referred to as a “joyous crowd-pleaser.”
Rotten Tomatoes: 91%
Stars: Bill Nighy, Imelda Staunton, Dominic West, Paddy Considine, Andrew Scott, George MacKay, Joseph Gilgun, Ben Schnetzer
Director: Matthew Warchus
Runtime: 120 minutes
During the time when the “don’t ask, don’t tell” military policy existed, private Barry Winchell (Troy Garity) finds himself in a difficult position when it’s discovered that he’s dating Calpernia Addams, a transgender showgirl. Jealousy, anger, lack of acceptance, and pressure lead to rising tensions between Winchell and his roommate Justin Fisher (Shawn Hatosy) that escalates to violence and Winchell’s eventual murder. Based on a true story, this crime drama will have you clenching your fists in anger. The ending, however, brings some closure with a discussion of the events that occurred after Winchell’s death.
Rotten Tomatoes: 88%
Stars: Troy Garity, Lee Pace
Director: Frank Pierson
Runtime: 112 minutes
With a perfect rating, this documentary is about the HIV/AIDs crisis in San Francisco in the early ’80s that was then known as the “Gay Plague.” It includes interviews with five key individuals of the time: A man who worked as a counselor for gay men, a political activist, an HIV+ artist, a black dancer who operated a flower stand that sold flowers for many funerals of those who died from the disease, and a nurse who helped administer the clinical trials for antiretroviral drugs. We Were Here delves deep into the crisis to help viewers better understand the critical importance of medical care, social services, and community support.
Rotten Tomatoes: 100%
Stars: Ed Wolf, Paul Boneberg, Daniel Goldstein, Guy Clark, Eileen Glutzer
Director: David Weissman
Runtime: 90 minutes
Also known as Mi mejor amigo, this Spanish-language Argentinian film is a coming-of-age movie about Lorenzo, a 16-year-old boy in Patagonia discovering his sexuality, with the help and friendship of Caito, a 17-year-old who has been taken in by Lorenzo’s parents. The film beautifully presents the idea of a young man struggling to understand his feelings and attractions as well as his emotional connections with others. It has been praised for its subtleties and believable performances about two young men simply trying to find themselves.
Rotten Tomatoes: 100%
Stars: Angelo Mutti Spinetta, Lautaro Rodriguez
Director: Martin Deus
Runtime: 91 minutes
An Icelandic-language film, this coming-of-age drama looks at the emotional and sexual journeys of two preteen boys, Thor and Christian, who are living in an Icelandic fishing village. As they deal with adolescence, one boy shows an interest in a girl while the other is confused about his newfound feelings for his best friend. The film took home the Queer Lion award at the 73rd Venice Film Festival.
Rotten Tomatoes: 84%
Stars: Baldur Einarsson, Blaer Hinriksson, Dilja Valsdottir, Katla Njalsdottir
Director: Guðmundur Arnar Guðmundsson
Runtime: 129 minutes
The Mexican drama, available with English subtitles (originally in Spanish) is divided into four self-contained stories, each about a different person exploring love and self-acceptance. The first is an 11-year-old boy trying to come to terms with his attraction to a male cousin. The second is a pair of college kids who get into a relationship but one is not comfortable with officially coming out. In the third, one man struggles with his attraction to someone else while in a long-term relationship with another man. An old family man obsessed with a young male prostitute is the subject of the fourth story. The film was shortlisted for the Foreign Language Film category for the Academy Awards but was not selected.
Rotten Tomatoes: 86%
Stars: Antonio Velazquez, Alejandro de la Madrid, Cesar Ramos, Gustavo Egelhaaf, Alonso Echanove, Alejandro Belmonte, Karina Gidi, Juan Manuel Bernal
Director: Sergio Tovar Velarde
Runtime: 110 minutes
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