Close this search box.

Foreign LGBTQIA+ films that challenge social norms

by Jericho Zafra

Recently updated on February 8, 2023 02:50 pm

THE media representation of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, and Asexual (LGBTQIA+) community continues to progress over time.  Despite this, LGBTQIA+ people face discrimination in the workplace, schools, and hospitals, and many are abused and deserted by their own families. They are targeted for physical abuse, being beaten, sexually assaulted, tortured, and killed. 

According to the United Nations, there are around 77 nations where LGBTQIA+ individuals run the possibility of being arrested, prosecuted, and imprisoned for engaging in private, consensual relationships with someone of the same sexual orientation. At least five of these countries have the death penalty as a punishment.

While gender inclusivity remains a taboo topic globally, here are some LGBTQIA+ films that revolt against antiquated social standards:

The Color Purple (1985)

The film The Color Purple chronicles the struggles endured by Celie, a young African American woman brought up in suburban seclusion in Georgia, and the eventual triumph she achieves as she learns to defy the crippling identity imposed on her by society. Celie tells her life story by penning poignantly open letters to the Divine.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012)

Photo Credit: Roadshow Films

Charlie, a first-year student, is a perennial social outcast until he falls under the spell of Sam, who is attractive and free-spirited, and Patrick, who is courageous and Sam’s stepbrother. This noteworthy adaptation of Stephen Chbosky’s renowned novel follows the journey of a trio as they search for the ideal song amid adoration, sorrow, fear, and optimism. 

Beach Rats (2017)

The Beach Rats focuses on Frankie, a teenage boy struggling to balance his girlfriend and acquaintances with his growing sex life with older men in Brooklyn. The story discusses the detrimental consequences of hiding your identity and labeling enforced by society.

Behind The Candelabra (2013)

Behind the Candelabra is a film based on the real-life romantic relationship between the famous pianist Wadiau Valentino Liberace (played by Michael Douglas) and the young Scott Thorson (played by Matt Damon). The film focuses on Thorson’s drug addiction due to Liberace’s affairs with other men.

Transhood (2020)

The documentary Transhood revolves around the journey of four families in Kansas City and their transgender children growing up with different perspectives on gender identity. It expressed the disconnect between the old and new generations and why the voices of transgender kids need to be heard.



We have the stories you’ll want to read.

RepublicAsia Newsletter