Best gay flicks of ’08

Sean Penn as Harvey Milk

Moving on to the entertainment bests of 2008, it was quite a queer year on the silver screen. Taking a look at the recaps from AfterElton and AfterEllen it’s queer themes in film have become quite abundant, which means the top 5 truly get to be highlights, instead of scrabbling for any hint of gay screen content. (Which is not to say the biggest splashes are always the best…)

5 – Breakfast with Scot and Shelter

Two indie flicks that took a strong gay theme and made sure that they became real and personal stories. Shelter was a sweet life and love story that blew up some gay stereotypes with its gay Cali surfer dudes. Breakfast with Scot, officially sanctioned by the NHL and the first time a professional sports league has allowed their logo and uniforms
to be used in a gay-themed movie, also played around with traditional ideas of homosexuality and family when a very straight-laced gay couple must take in a flamboyant child.

4 – The Sissyboy Documentary

It may not have not much of a National splash but hometown heroes the Sissyboys had a banner year in Portland, despite having broken up as a drag troupe over a year ago. As raw a film as the performers were themselves the Sissyboy doc wormed it’s way into your dirty, genderqueer-loving heart like nothing with Hollywood polish could have.


3 – XXY

One of the first films that openly deals with an intersexed adolescent this Argentinian film showed a truly strong teenager with a very nuanced outlook on life, gender, sexuality and relationships. Technically released in 2007, the states didn’t get to see this gem until it hit our festival circuit early this year.

2 – The Edge of Heaven

Faith Akin’s latest tale of intersecting lives features a lesbian relationship prominently while skillfully incorporating it into a much larger and sadder tale. Another foreign film technically released in 2007.

1 – Milk

The most talked about film this year, however, is the much lauded story of the first openly gay elected official Harvey Milk. Directed by local gay indie darling Gus Van Sant and starring Sean Penn and James Franco among others in this stellar cast, it had to top the list. And though Oscar nominations have not yet been announced Hollywood is abuzz with Best Actor predictions for Sean Penn.

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