15 best lesbian movies to watch online; From Crush to The Half of It

Discover a range of lesbian love stories on Netflix, Hulu, and more. From period dramas to superhero flicks, these films celebrate authentic representation.

Updated on Oct 18, 2023  |  09:47 PM IST |  1.8M
Image credit: imdb
Best lesbian movies of all time
Key Highlight
  • Carol is a breathtaking love story between two women in 1950s New York
  • The Handmaiden, a sensual and suspenseful tale of love and betrayal set in 1930s Korea
  • Blue Is the Warmest Color, the intense coming-of-age love story with powerful performances

Looking for authentic and empowering lesbian movies? We've got you covered! Despite progress, there's still a void to fill when it comes to queer representation. Say goodbye to inauthentic portrayals by straight men, because we're bringing you lesbian love stories that take the spotlight. Prepare for messy and chaotic characters, just like their heterosexual counterparts, and even lesbian superheroes saving the world.

Whether you're browsing Netflix or Hulu, we've curated the best lesbian movies available. From sapphic period dramas to live-action Marvel comic adaptations, these films showcase the diversity of lesbian experiences. And yes, we couldn't forget Kristen Stewart's delightful sapphic holiday rom-com.

Get ready to dive into a world of lesbian stories that deserve to be in front and center.

 

 

1. Booksmart (2019)


  • Release date: 2019
  • Cast: Kaitlyn Dever, Beanie Feldstein, Jessica Williams, Jason Sudeikis, Lisa Kudrow, Will Forte, Victoria Ruesga, Mason Gooding.
  • IMDb Rating: 7.1/10
  • Directed by: Olivia Wilde
  • Suitable for: R
  • Run Time: 1h 42m
  • Genre: Comedy/Teen
  • OTT platform: Apple TV

One of the best things about this movie is that it doesn't revolve around a tortured love story. Instead, it focuses on the journey of two best friends, Amy (Kaitlyn Dever) and Molly (Beanie Feldstein), as they embark on an unforgettable adventure before graduating high school. What sets this film apart as a lesbian story is the early goal set by Amy: to have a romantic encounter with another girl by the end of the night. Throughout the hilarious and relatable chaos they encounter, the movie offers a refreshing perspective on the tumultuous transition into adulthood.

 

2. Tár (2022)


  • Release date: 2022
  • Cast: Cate Blanchett, Noémie Merlant, Adam Gopnik, Marc-Martin Straub, Egon Brandstetter, Ylva Pollak, Paula Först, Sylvia Flote.
  • IMDb Rating: 7.5/10
  • Directed by: Todd Field
  • Suitable for: R
  • Run Time: 2h 38m
  • Genre: Drama/Musical
  • OTT platform: Amazon Prime

Prepare for an intense ride in this Oscar-nominated drama! Cate Blanchett shines as Lydia Tár, a fictional character who exudes power and toxicity. Clad in flawless suits, Tár is a renowned conductor with a disturbing tendency to manipulate her students, all while being involved with someone in her orchestra. Witness the cringe-worthy moments as Tár confronts the damning allegations in a visually stunning world.

 

3. Bound (1996)


  • Release date: 1996
  • Cast: Jennifer Tilly, Gina Gershon, Joe Pantoliano, John P. Ryan, Christopher Meloni · Richard C. Sarafian, Mary Mara, Susie Bright.
  • IMDb Rating: 7.3/10
  • Directed by: Lana Wachowski, Lilly Wachowski
  • Suitable for: R
  • Run Time: 1h 49m
  • Genre: Crime/Thriller
  • OTT platform: Amazon Prime

In this thrilling blend of heist and romance, Jennifer Tilly takes on the role of Violet while Gina Gershon portrays Corky. When these two women cross paths in an elevator, a passionate love affair ignites. However, things get complicated as Violet happens to be the girlfriend of Caesar, a notorious gangster recently freed from prison and played by Joe Pantoliano. The movie revolves around their daring plan to escape from Caesar's clutches, while also absconding with a staggering $2 million belonging to the mob.

 

4. The Incredibly True Adventure of Two Girls in Love (1995)


  • Release date: 1995
  • Cast: Laurel Holloman,  Nicole Ari Parker, Maggie Moore, Kate Stafford, Sabrina Artel.
  • IMDb Rating: 6.6/10
  • Directed by: Maria Maggenti
  • Suitable for: R
  • Run Time: 1h 34m
  • Genre: Romance/Drama
  • OTT platform: Amazon Prime

In this high school movie, Randy Dean (played by Laurel Holloman), a gas station employee, forms an unexpected friendship with Evie (played by Nicole Parker), the popular girl. Both Randy and Evie face ridicule due to their sexual identities, and as they navigate their bond, they also discover love and reveal their relationship to friends and family. This heartfelt film explores the rollercoaster of teenage love, the journey of coming out, and all the challenges that accompany it.

 

5. The Handmaiden (2016)


  • Release date: 2016
  • Cast: Kim Min-hee, Ha Jung-woo, Cho Jin-woong, Moon So-ri, Kim Tae-ri.
  • IMDb Rating: 8.1/10
  • Directed by: Park Chan-wook
  • Suitable for: R
  • Run Time: 2h 24m
  • Genre: Romance/Drama
  • OTT platform: Amazon Prime

Step into the world of a South Korean psychological thriller set in 1930s Korea under Japanese rule. Directed by Park Chan-wook (known for Snowpiercer and Stoker), this captivating film stars Kim Min-hee as Sook Hee, a girl assigned as Lady Hideko's handmaiden. Little do they know, Sook Hee is the daughter of the region's renowned thief. With a plan to rob the family, Sook Hee finds herself entangled in a mesmerizing love affair with Lady Hideko. Brace yourself for a thrilling blend of cunning cons and a delicate romance between two remarkable women.


 

6. Heavenly Creatures (1994)


  • Release date: 1994
  • Cast: Melanie Lynskey, Kate Winslet, Sarah Peirse, Diana Kent, Clive Merrison, Simon O'Connor, Jed Brophy, Peter Elliott.
  • IMDb Rating: 7.3/10
  • Directed by: Peter Jackson
  • Suitable for: R
  • Run Time: 1h 39m
  • Genre: Crime/Drama
  • OTT platform: NA

Introducing Kate Winslet as Juliet, a wealthy teenager who moves from England to Christchurch, New Zealand. She quickly befriends Pauline (played by Melanie Lynsky), and they bond over their mutual adoration for star tenor Mario Lanza. However, their close friendship worries their parents, who view it as unhealthy. Determined to be together, Juliet and Pauline hatch a plan to escape to America while seeking revenge on those who try to separate them. Get ready for a captivating tale of friendship, rebellion, and hidden agendas!

 

7. Portrait of a Lady on Fire (2019)


  • Release date: 2019
  • Cast: Noémie Merlant, Adèle Haenel, Luàna Bajrami, Valeria Golino, Christel Baras, Armande Boulanger, Guy Delamarche, Clément Bouyssou.
  • IMDb Rating: 8.1/10
  • Directed by: Céline Sciamma
  • Suitable for: R
  • Run Time: 2h 11m
  • Genre: Romance/Drama
  • OTT platform: Amazon Prime

Immerse yourself in a captivating French historical romance. The tale revolves around an artist given the task of painting a wedding portrait for a soon-to-be bride. This exquisite film has garnered numerous awards and boasts a remarkable 97% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

 

8. D.E.B.S. (2004)


  • Release date: 2004
  • Cast: Sara Foster, Jordana Brewster, Meagan Good, Devon Aoki, Jill Ritchie, Geoff Stults, Jimmi Simpson, Jessica Cauffiel.
  • IMDb Rating: 5.3/10
  • Directed by: Angela Robinson
  • Suitable for: R
  • Run Time: 1h 31m
  • Genre: Comedy/Action
  • OTT platform: Hulu

In the early 2000s, a film called D.E.B.S. emerged, reminiscent of Charlie's Angels but with a queer twist. This captivating movie revolves around a group of teenage crime fighters on a mission to track down a formidable adversary. However, an unexpected dilemma arises when one of the team members finds herself falling in love with their intended target.

 

9. Desert Hearts (1985)


  • Release date: 1985
  • Cast: Helen Shaver, Patricia Charbonneau, Audra Lindley, Andra Akers, Gwen Welles, Dean Butler, James Staley, Katie La Bourdette.
  • IMDb Rating: 7.1/10
  • Directed by: Donna Deitch
  • Suitable for: R
  • Run Time: 1h 36m
  • Genre: Romance/Drama
  • OTT platform: HBO Max

This 80s film is celebrated as the pioneering lesbian love story in cinema, where the women ultimately find happiness together. It revolves around a young professional going through a divorce, who unexpectedly discovers love with a talented young artist. Experience the critically acclaimed movie that broke barriers and touched hearts.


 

10. I Care a Lot (2020)


  • Release date: 2020
  • Cast: Rosamund Pike, Peter Dinklage, Eiza González, Dianne Wiest, Chris Messina, Isiah Whitlock Jr., Macon Blair, Alicia Witt.
  • IMDb Rating: 6.3/10
  • Directed by: J Blakeson
  • Suitable for: R
  • Run Time: 1h 58m
  • Genre: Comedy/Thriller
  • OTT platform: Netflix

In this star-studded dark comedy, a greedy legal guardian and her girlfriend and business partner embark on a thieving spree with their wards' money. However, their fortune takes a twist when they encounter their perfect match.

 

11. Imagine Me and You (2005)


  • Release date: 2005
  • Cast: Piper Perabo, Lena Headey, Matthew Goode, Celia Imrie, Anthony Head, Darren Boyd, Sue Johnston, Boo Jackson.
  • IMDb Rating: 6.7/10
  • Directed by: Ol Parker
  • Suitable for: R
  • Run Time: 1h 34m
  • Genre: Romance/Comedy
  • OTT platform: Apple Tv

Experience the ultimate sapphic longing in the early-aughts rom-com 'Imagine Me and You.' This delightful British film stars Piper Perabo and Lena Headey. Follow the journey of a newlywed bride as she finds herself captivated by a charming local florist. Get ready for a heartwarming and captivating story that will leave you craving more. Don't miss out on this enchanting tale of love and self-discovery.

 

12. The Miseducation of Cameron Post (2018)


  • Release date: 2018
  • Cast: Chloë Grace Moretz, Steven Hauck, Quinn Shephard, Kerry Butler, Dalton Harrod, McCabe Slye, Dale Soules, Sasha Lane.
  • IMDb Rating: 6.6/10
  • Directed by: Desiree Akhavan
  • Suitable for: NA
  • Run Time: 1h 36m
  • Genre: Romance/Drama
  • OTT platform: Pluto Tv

In the early '90s, a gripping coming-of-age drama unfolds as Cameron Post (portrayed by Chloë Grace Moretz) finds herself banished to a conversion therapy center. This powerful tale is based on the eponymous novel, immersing you in a world of struggle and self-discovery.

 

13. Crush (2022)


  • Release date: 2022
  • Cast: Rowan Blanchard, Auli'i Cravalho, Isabella Ferreira, Tyler Alvarez, Teala Dunn.
  • IMDb Rating: 6.3/10
  • Directed by: Sammi Cohen
  • Suitable for: NA
  • Run Time: 1h 32m
  • Genre: Romance/Drama
  • OTT platform: Hotstar

Join Paige Evans (Rowan Blanchard), a talented artist, as she takes a leap of faith and joins the track team to pursue her crush. Little did she know, she would stumble upon an unexpected twist: falling head over heels for her twin sister (Auli’i Cravalho). Get ready for a heartwarming coming-of-age tale filled with love and self-discovery.

 

14. But I’m a Cheerleader (1999)


  • Release date: 1999
  • Cast: Natasha Lyonne, Michelle Williams, Brandt Wille, Bud Cort, Mink Stole · RuPaul, Katie Donahue, Danielle Rene.
  • IMDb Rating: 6.7/10
  • Directed by: Jamie Babbit
  • Suitable for: NA
  • Run Time: 1h 24m
  • Genre: Romance/Comedy
  • OTT platform: Pluto Tv

In the satirical teen rom-com 'But I'm a Cheerleader,' a naive teenager is sent to a rehab camp by her straitlaced parents and friends, who suspect her of being a lesbian. Starring Natasha Lyonne, Clea DuVall, RuPaul, and Melanie Lynskey, this film hilariously tackles the misconceptions and stereotypes surrounding sexuality.

 

15. Carol (2015)


  • Release date: 2015
  • Cast: Cate Blanchett, Rooney Mara, Sarah Paulson, Kyle Chandler, Jake Lacy.
  • IMDb Rating: 7.2/10
  • Directed by: Todd Haynes
  • Suitable for: NA
  • Run Time: 1h 58m
  • Genre: Romance/Drama
  • OTT platform: Amazon Prime

Considered one of the greatest LGBTQ films ever made, Carol is a captivating romantic drama set in 1950s New York City. Featuring a stellar cast including Cate Blanchett, Rooney Mara, and Sarah Paulson, this movie delves into the passionate relationship between a young aspiring photographer and a sophisticated older woman going through a divorce. Adapted from Patricia Highsmith's acclaimed novel The Price of Salt, Carol is a must-see cinematic masterpiece that explores love and desire in a bygone era.

Also read: Kristen Stewart: The first time I ever dated a girl, I was immediately being asked if I was a lesbian

FAQs

Are there any lesbian movies specifically made by LGBTQ+ filmmakers?
Yes, there are several lesbian movies made by LGBTQ+ filmmakers that are available on OTT platforms. These movies often bring authentic perspectives and narratives to the screen. Some notable examples include But I'm a Cheerleader (1999) directed by Jamie Babbit and The Miseducation of Cameron Post (2018) directed by Desiree Akhavan. Availability may vary depending on the specific OTT platform.

What are some of the best lesbian movies available on the internet?
Blue Is the Warmest Color, Carol, Portrait of a Lady on Fire, But I'm a Cheerleader, Bound, and The Handmaiden are highly regarded lesbian films.

Which lesbian movie won the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival?
Blue Is the Warmest Color won the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival.

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