Enjoy free movies that veer towards the queer. All are now available to watch at SBS on Demand.
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SBS Movies

16 Feb 2016 - 5:08 PM  UPDATED 3 Mar 2017 - 12:53 PM

Transamerica

Desperate Housewives Felicity Huffman was nominated for Best Actress at the Oscars for her impressive performance as Bree, who is about to undergo a sex-change operation, when she receives an expected call from a 17-year-old identifying himself as her son from a college liaison. Bree's psychiatrist won't approve the surgery until she deals with this relationship, so she flies to New York City, bails the youth out of juvenile detention, and offers him a ride back to LA without disclosing that she is his father.

Why You Should Watch: Transamerica
Watch The Movie Show original review

 

Yossi & Jagger

This critical and commercial hit in Israel, directed by Eytan Fox (Cupcakes), tells the beautiful and heartbreaking story of two Israeli officers who fall in love in a remote Israeli outpost on the dangerous Lebanese border. Yossi, the company commander, prefers discretion and insists on maintaining a macho exterior, while playful Jagger, his second-in-command, is soon to complete his military service and can’t wait to come out of the closet. Surrounding them is a group of young soldiers who endure a humdrum tour of duty punctuated only by nightly ambushes and sudden violence.

 

The Kids Are All Right

In this partly autobiographical dramedy by Lisa Cholodenko (Olive Kitteridge), Julianne Moore and Annette Bening star as a LA-based lesbian couple whose home life is thrown into chaos when their two kids track down their biological donor (Mark Ruffalo). A funny and tender look at modern families that steers clear of clichés.

The Kids Are All Right Review

 

Sister Smile

Cécile de France (The Kid with a Bike) gives a riveting performance in this biopic about the rise and fall of Belgian nun Jeanine Deckers, who as a young woman struggling with her sexuality, found refuge at the convent, where she entertained her sisters, then the local community, by playing the guitar. Deckers then rose to fame as The Singing Nun aka Sister Smile after scoring a chart-topping hit song entitled "Dominique" in 1963. But her life came spiralling down after the hit and although she tried to pursue an alternative career, her financial woes lead her and her partner to commit suicide in the early '80s.

Sister Smile review
SBS Sexuality: The sad song of Belgium's singing lesbian nun

 

Madame Sata

The life and times of flamboyant, fiercely proud drag queen Joao Francisco dos Santos are brought to vivid life in Madame Sata. A legend of the clubs and slums of Brazil, he spent almost half of his life in prison – 10 of them for murder. He finds a release from the mean streets in his performance art, and proudly defies his homophobic attackers, telling them being a queen makes him no less of a man. 'Madame Sata' is our tour guide through the gritty dive bars, cabarets and prison cells of 1930s Rio’s underground.

The drag queen who became a revolutionary

 

Appropriate Behaviour

From the ‘Girls’ school of awkward, inward-looking and yet effortlessly cool Brooklyn-hipsters, writer/director/star Desiree Akhavan draws on her own life experiences in this sharply observed queer comedy. She plays Shirin, a hopelessly in love, wannabe filmmaker stuck teaching pre-schoolers while trying to juggle her personal and sexual identity with the social expectations of her expat Iranian parents. Dashes of Woody Allen via Greta Gerwig’s Frances Ha imbue Appropriate Behaviour with abundant wit.

Desiree Akhavan on ‘Appropriate Behaviour’ in sex scenes (interview)
Read review

 

Lovesong

Riley Keough (American Honey) stars in this powerful exploration of the blurred line between friendship and desire for two women. Neglected by her husband, Sarah embarks on an impromptu road trip with her young daughter and her best friend Mindy. Along the way, the dynamic between the two friends intensifies before circumstances force them apart. Years later, Sarah attempts to rebuild their intimate connection in the days before Mindy's wedding.

 

Eyes Wide Open

In Haim Tabakman’s simmering, still debut, a middle-aged butcher in an ultra-Orthodox community in Jerusalem struggles with questions of faith, commitment and desire. Aaron (Zohar Strauss) is a married father of four who is respected in his community as a righteous man, one dedicated to work, prayer and family. But when he takes on Ezri (Ran Danker) as an apprentice, the physical attraction between them slowly builds from the unspoken to the actual, as the film carefully depicts the enclosed world the pair both live in and risk expulsion from. The filmmaker doesn’t take sides or pass judgment, allowing for an immersive experience.

Eyes Wide Open Review

 

Tiresia

This fascinating psychological thriller by French director Bertrand Bonello (House of Pleasures, Saint Laurent) recounts the ancient Greek myth of a blind prophet who lived as both a man and a woman. Tiresia, a Brazilian transsexual, is kidnapped and locked away by a man called Terranova, who considers he has found the perfect rose in Tiresia, superior to the work of God. But locked up and deprived of hormone therapy, Tiresia starts to lose her female attributes, which angers Terranova. Nominated for the Palme d'Or at the 2003 Cannes Film Festival.

 

Geography Club

Bringing the Glee factor, Gary Entin’s Geography Club sees a bunch of high school students use the geeky club in question as a front for an LGBTI group providing a safe haven from homophobic bullying. Pitch Perfect’s Cameron Deane Stewart plays Russell, who is secretly mooning after the school footy captain Kevin (Justin Deeley of the 90210 reboot). Luckily enough, the feeling’s mutual, but are they ready to go public with their budding romance?

 

Undertow

Taking place on the postcard perfect beach of a tiny Peruvian village, writer/director Javier Fuentes-León’s achingly beautiful Undertow is a haunting queer love story of secret desire and repression. Miguel (Cristian Mercado), a young fisherman, is expecting his first child with his wife, while secretly mourning the drowning death of his lover, painter Santiago (Manolo Cardona). As Miguel struggles to keep it together, he is repeatedly visited by Santiago’s spirit as he hunts for the missing body.

 

Tomboy

In this critically-acclaimed movie by French director Celine Sciamma, 10-year-old Laure's (Zoé Héran) life changes when her family move to a new neighbourhood. When young local Lisa accidentally mistakes her for a boy, Laure takes the opportunity to live out a new persona. As Mikaël, Laure has a confidence that eludes her as a girl and she is soon adopted and admired by Lisa and the local youngsters.

Read review

 

C.R.A.Z.Y.

This movie by French-Canadian director Jean-Marc Vallée (Dallas Buyers Club) portrays the bonds between a father and his five sons, as told from the perspective of teenage Zachary (Marc-André Grondin). A sexually-confused Christmas Day baby who likes to march to the beat of his own drum, Zachary forces himself to live a lie in order to suit his gruff father's (Michel Cote) traditional expectations.

 

Room in Rome

In this steamy Spanish movie, Alba (Elena Anaya) seduces Natasha (Natasha Yarovenko) in a bar, and the two women agree to limit their passionate affair to a one-night encounter. However, as they begin to slowly reveal their true selves to each other, their lust is met with deeper emotions that open the door for what evolves into a poignant character study.

 

Velvet Goldmine

Director Todd Haynes (Far From Heaven, I'm Not There) gives us an insight into the UK '70s glam-rock scene by following British journalist Arthur Stuart (Christian Bale) on an investigation about the rise and fall of his childhood hero, pop superstar Brian Slade (Jonathan Rhys Meyers). Also stars Ewan McGregor as rebellious American singer Curt Wild, and Toni Collette as Slade's wife Mandy.

Watch The Movie Show original ★★★★ review

 

Orlando

A dying Queen Elizabeth I orders Noble Orlando (Tilda Swinton) to stay forever young, he obeys and lives happily for few hundred years in the castle she bequeathed to him. However, when he's almost killed during a visit in Turkey as British Ambassador, he changes overnight into a woman (also Swinton), which makes her life suddenly a lot more complicated. Whether playing Orlando as a 17th century noble man or a single mother trying to live off her writing in the 1990s, androgynous Tilda Swinton fits the bill perfectly as Virginia Woolfe's heroine, in this free reinterpretation of the 1928 novel.

Watch The Movie Show original ★★★★ ½ review

 

Patrik: Age 1.5

Goran and Sven are the perfect gay couple; they have a beautiful house in the suburbs, a strong relationship, a home full of love and warmth. Newly approved for adoption, they believe that baby Patrik, age 1.5, is on his way. One tiny decimal mistake later, they find themselves stuck with a 15-year-old homophobe with a criminal record. This Swedish comedy offers a heartfelt and gentle look at prejudice.

 

Breakfast with Scot

A similar subject is treated in this touching comedy set in Toronto about a gay couple, Eric, an ex-NHL hockey player who hasn't come out at work, and Sam, a lawyer. One day, they are given temporary custody of recently orphaned Scot, an 11-year-old boy, who loves musicals and all things pink and feathery. Sam and Ed try to stir him towards a more masculine hobby – hockey – with disastrous results. Both men starts to question their parenting skills and the compromises they’ve made to live in a straight society.

 

Gigola

Relive the seedy Paris of the 1960s with George (Lou Doillon), a charismatic young woman who, after the death of her older female lover, causes a sensation in the Parisian nightlife as Gigola, a cross-dressing Gigolo exclusively for women. An impressive Dandy, Gigola fast collects clients and cash, drawing her ever closer to a world of crime and corruption.

 

Happy Happy

In this Norwegian movie, an easygoing housewife maintains unyielding optimism in spite of the fact she's desperately lonely and her closeted husband refuses to have sex with her. When new neighbours arrive, she is drawn to their sophistication. Her enthusiasm to spend time with them spills into an elicit affair with the husband. An achingly awkward, surprisingly moving and very funny skewering of modern society’s tendency towards self-fulfilment over shared experience.

Read ★★★★ ½ review

 

Loose Cannons

In this award-winning Italian movie, Tommaso (Riccardo Scamarcio), a young literature student, travels from Rome to visit his conservative family, who runs a pasta-making business. He plans on telling his parents that he is homosexual and wants to become a writer. But when he is about to come out in front of the whole family, his older brother Antonio (Alessandro Preziosi) ruins his plans by also announcing he's gay. All the family's hopes are now placed on Tommaso's shoulders for him to become the man of the family and run the pasta business. 

 

Beautiful Boxer

This critically-acclaimed movie from Thailand is based upon the incredible true story of Nong Toom (Asanee Suwan) – a champion kickboxer who became a woman and now works as a model and actress. Knowing he was different, Nong must overcome poverty, prejudice and fierce opponents to become a champion and find his true self. 

 

Brotherhood

Former Danish servicemen Lars (Thure Lindhardt) and Jimmy (David Dencik) first meet while training in a neo-nazi group. Moving from hostility through grudging admiration to friendship and finally passion, events take a darker turn when their illicit relationship is uncovered. Winner of Best Film at the 2009 Rome Film Festival. 

 

Looking For Cheyenne

Recently separated couple Sonia (Aurélia Petit) and Cheyenne (Mila Dekker) are still deeply in love. Sonia, a teacher, is content with her urban lifestyle, while Cheyenne has gone in search of a lifestyle living off the land, after losing her job as a journalist. After a few dead-end flings, Sonia goes in search of Cheyenne who she can’t manage to forget. However when Sonia arrives at Cheyenne’s, both women struggle to reach a compromise despite their burning desire to be together.

 

The Refuge

Mousse (Isabelle Carré) and Louis (Melvil Poupaud) are young, beautiful and in love – but together their lives are spiralling out of control. When Louis fatally overdoses one night, Mousse wakes up in hospital to discover she is pregnant. Lost in her grief and rebuffed by her family, she escapes to a beautiful beach house to wait out the rest of her pregnancy. Soon she is joined in her refuge by Louis’ gay brother Paul (Louis-Ronan Choisy) and the two connect over the love they have lost, and the hope Mousse’s pregnancy brings. 

 

Circumstance

With Circumstance, director Maryam Keshavarz explores homosexuality in modern Iran. In Tehran's underground art scene, two teenagers, Atafeh (Nikohl Boosheri) and Shireen (Sarah Kazemy), experiment with their sexuality. Meanwhile, Mehran (Reza Sixo Safai), Atafeh's prodigal son brother, leaves behind his life as a classical musician when he returns home from drug rehab. Winner of the Audience Award at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival. 

Read ★★★★ review

 

Backstage

In this French movie by actor/director Emmanuelle Bercot (Mon Roi), an adolescent groupie (Isild Le Besco) zeroes in on her Blondie-like idol (Emmanuelle Seigner) after a chance encounter. Gradually and intensely, their lives intertwine as they develop an emotional dependency.

 

Explore the entire "Rainbow Pride" collection at SBS on Demand

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SBS On Demand: Camp Classics
In the spirit of Eurovision, we've themed a collection of free movies that's as camp as a row of tents. All available for free at SBS On Demand.

* SBS doesn't charge access fees for its SBS On Demand service.  ISP and data charges may apply for individual users.