20 Lesbian and Bisexual Comedy Movies, Ranked

Welcome to the Autostraddle Team Movie Watch, in which our entire TV Team (we don’t have a Film Team, so we’re multi-tasking here) weighs in on a thematic set of lesbian/bisexual films! Because you know what, sometimes everybody except Riese thinks Battle of the Sexes is an incredible film and y’all need to know that we are not a monolith. Except… when we are. This week’s edition: Comedies!

FYI: This isn’t a comprehensive list of all lesbian / bisexual romantic comedies or a list of the best ones, it’s just a SAMPLING of the genre. 

The numbers are an average of all of our ratings, but not every rater also wrote a review. 


20. Duck Butter (2018) (4)

Heather’s Autostraddle Review (2018): “The sex was good but the delirious lesbian mumblecore didn’t leave a lasting impression.”

Kayla: “The sex scenes are hands-down the best parts of this movie, and that’s important!” (7)

Heather: “One of the most unlikable love interests in any lesbian love story ever told — and unnecessarily gross too. ” (3)

Drew: “How. How is this movie so bad. I kept waiting for it to be good. Because Alia Shawkat. And lots of sex scenes. And talking. I like all those things! But it’s just… bad.” (2)


19. Almost Adults (2017) (4.7)

Valerie’s Autostraddle Review (2017): Almost Adults isn’t perfect, but there’s a lot to love about a film that sidesteps so many traditional lesbian movie tropes. (Including: No one dies!)”

Valerie: “This movie was cute and queer and centers a friendship which I really appreciated but I’m not like…in a rush to see it again.” (6)

Heather: “You’d probably have more fun watching Carmilla again.” (5)

Drew: “It’s sweet enough, and its heart is in the right place, but the script just isn’t very good. It took me a few tries to get through this one, to be quite honest.” (3)


18. The Intervention (2016) (5.3)

Kayla’s Autostraddle Review (2016): “It’s a very likable movie about unlikable people.”

Heather: “Such potential for a pretty mediocre indie Big Chill.” (5)

Riese: “The characters never managed to make strong cases for any of their narratives to exist, but it was cool to have the queer couple integrated so seamlessly.” (5)

Kayla: “The Intervention has undeniably intricate, believable characters, but it’s hard to ignore its whiteness when this particular brand of indie film is so saturated with stories about white people.” (6)


17. Lez Bomb (2018) (5.5)

Heather’s Review of Lez Bomb (2018): I cannot stress enough that this is a true and traditional comedy of errors, brushing up against all the tropes that have been built atop the stock plot since Elizabethans embraced it centuries ago.

Drew: “A farce about lesbians is a great pitch and I wish this had stuck to it a bit more. All attempts to have emotional character moments fall flat and it’s not nearly as funny as it needs to be to make up for that. But it’s pleasant enough.” (4)

Heather: “A comedy of errors with some legitimately hilarious and cringe-worthy moments — but it drags on too long trying to fully realize all of its characters instead of growing its main two.” (7)


16. The Kids Are All Right (2010) (5.5)

Julie and Brandy’s Autostraddle Review (2010): “The writing was charming and poignant, the directing was thoughtful without being heavy-handed, and the acting.. wow. The fucking acting. They were all great, but Annette Benning was giving ACTOR’S STUDIO LESBIAN EXECUTIVE REALNESS.”

Natalie: “A mainstream movie starring a lesbian couple…this was supposed to be a watershed moment; instead it’s about a woman that cheats on her wife with a man. The straights love it, you probably won’t though.” (3)

Carmen: “Eh. You think you’re going to watch a movie about lesbians, but it’s actually about the man who was their sperm donor. The ultimate – and most disappointing – bait and switch. Annette Bening is still a master of her craft.” (5)

Drew: “I don’t know why this movie does little for me. Usually I’m a big fan of anything about narcissistic, unlikable queers. Maybe I need to see it again.” (6)

Heather: “It’d be ten for me if no middle aged lesbians in committed monogamous relationships slept with men!” (7)

Riese: “Functioned adeptly on all levels of craft and story, with funny and memorable characters who are rarely seen in mainstream cinema — I just wish it hadn’t been centered on a trope we all hate. And yes I mean sleeping with a guy but I mainly mean a married lesbian couple no longer interested in sleeping with each other.” (7)


15. Wine Country (2019) (6)

Heather’s review of Wine Country (2009): “Wine Country isn’t just womanhood and women’s friendships; it’s specifically middle age womanhood and friendships… These women aren’t just united by their shared experiences; they’re also united by the fact that they, you know, watch TV shows on TVs. And that they know what TV shows are.”

Drew: “Obviously filled with talented people, this aggressively Netflix Netflix movie was really disappointing. It’s okay for a movie to have low-stakes, but it just wasn’t funny enough to justify the pace or lack of plot. It also had a boring animosity towards millennials. It’s fine to make fun of young people, but try to be clever about it.” (3)

Heather: “If Wine Country were actually wine, it’d be a nice canned rosé. Nothing fancy, pretty tasty, nice to crack open on a Sunday summer afternoon when you don’t have anything else to do. (It’s surprisingly gay!)” (7)

Carmen: “I loved Wine Country so much; perfectly chill summer comedy fair! And Paula Pell is the comedic breakout star, which is all the better because she’s playing the lesbian in the crew.” (8)


14. Rough Night (2017) (6.3)

Kayla: “This movie was funny and twisty and marketed poorly, so ignore the trailers and just dive into its weirdo comedy.” (8)

Heather: “Surprisingly funny and feminist! The trailer did not do this film justice, nor did the studio, which very obviously forced an edit that included way more dudes than necessary.” (7)

Riese: “Much better than the preview might suggest (there’s a lot the preview suggests that isn’t accurate, actually!), with a surprise queer love story and a lot of funny moments from Kate McKinnon and Ilana Glazer.” (6)

Drew: “Someone give Kate McKinnon her own movie!! I’m tired of her being the sidekick. And she’s not even gay in this! But Ilana Glazer and Zoë Kravitz are and that’s cool. Unfortunately the movie is just too glossy. It feels expensive and stilted which is not what you want from a comedy!” (4)


13. The Feels (2015) (7)

Heather’s The Feels review (2018): “Lesbian mumblecore is practically its own genre at this point, and The Feels glides easily into place alongside Duck Butter, The Intervention, Suicide Kale, etc. with its boundary-less relationships, improvised dialogue, characters who remind you of your own friends, and those stifled hiccups that give way to just enough drama to make the happy ending rewarding.”

Heather: “Constance Wu in a Big Chill-style lesbian rom-com with a lot of heart and a happy ending.” (7)

Drew: “Constance Wu as a lesbian! Constance Wu as a lesbian! This movie is fun and sweet and while it may not be perfect, I would just like to share that Constance Wu does in fact play a lesbian.” (7)


12. Life Partners (2014) (7)

Brittani’s Autostraddle Review (2014): “…a film in which everything that could go usually wrong in a lesbian film inexplicably doesn’t!”

Heather: “Sometimes it’s nice to know a lesbian can be for real best friends with a straight girl and no one’s taking advantage of anyone’s intimacy or getting their heart shredded.” (8)

Drew: “Wow does this movie make heterosexuality look unappealing. Adam Brody is every guy your straight friends have ever dated and it’s hilarious. This is a sweet best friend romcom that’s nice if unremarkable. Kate McKinnon does have a great cameo though.” (6)


11. Kissing Jessica Stein (2001) (7.75)

Heather: “This movie gets a bad wrap but I personally think it’s smart and funny as hell.” (8)

Drew: “I love 80% of this movie too much to process the ending. Maybe it’s actually deep and complex! I don’t care. You cannot give me a queer woman romcom that delightful and Jewish and then take it away from me that harshly.” (7)

Riese: “At the time, I hated this movie, as it was one of a few lesbian-ish films to get a wide release and was ultimately about a girl who decided she wasn’t really into lesbianism after all. Sexless lesbian trope again! But now that we have more options, I realize that it’s actually pretty cute and fun.” (6)

Sarah: “All time favorite lesbian movie — I watch this at least 2x a year. Heather Juergensen and Jennifer Westfeldt are a perfect on-screen duo and I love that they wrote/produced/starred in this film together (which was once an off-Broadway play they produced called Lipschtick!). Jessica’s anxiety is both relatable and adorable, and Helen is sexy and perfect. For a film produced in 2001 it is 99.9% inoffensive. Don’t @ me about the ending either.” (10)⁣


10. Someone Great (2019) (7.3)


From Carmen and Natalie’s Autostraddle Review: “At it’s core, Someone Great is a comedy about getting high and drunk with your girls, listening to some great pop music, and growing up a little in the process.”

Carmen: “My favorite kind of comedy can be best described as ‘girls get together do the kind of stupid shit that they used to only let boys get away with on screen.’ Which is to say, I was an easy mark for “Someone Great” right from the start. If you want enjoy a bunch of best friends drink champagne straight from the bottle and dance around to Top 40 hits in their underwear, you could do a lot worse.” (9)

Natalie: “A fun, drunken romp with your straight best friends, set to an enviable soundtrack, without having to leave the couch.” (7)

Drew: “I watched this movie about an NYU grad saying goodbye to a relationship and moving to the west coast less than two months after I, an NYU grad, said goodbye to a relationship and moved to the west coast. Truthfully don’t know how to assess this as a movie. It had a lot of montages and I cried.” (6)


9. Booksmart (2019) (8)

Heather’s Booksmart review (2019): “Booksmart is a brilliant teen flick and a savvy female-fronted comedy and an exceptional lesbian film — and it’s also just a really smart, really funny movie. It transcends every genre it’s a part of.”

Drew: “I thoroughly enjoyed this movie. It’s funny and well-made and I truly could watch nothing but teen coming-of-age movies for the rest of my life. But I wish it had been a bit more grounded in time (either make your movie a period piece or don’t have a group of 18 year olds sing Alanis Morissette) and I wish the queer love story didn’t feel like the least developed part of the story.” (7)

Carmen: “I really wanted to love Booksmart (and was prepared to do so!) but ultimately it left me a little cold. I can’t quite put my finger on why. Even though it centers on two teen girls, one of whom is queer, it ultimately still felt like a story I’ve seen before.” (7)

Heather: “There’s a reason this comedy has maintained a near 100% Rotten Tomatoes rating: It’s so funny and so clever and so fresh and so queer and nothing but the female gaze.” (10)


8. Grandma (2015) (8.6)

Carmen: “Lily Tomlin playing a pot smoking lesbian grandma! That’s enough to sell the movie alone, but it’s also heart-forward, super feminist, and ultimately delightful as it you pass the time. Saying Tomlin is a comedic genius is redundant at this point, but damn she’s a queen in her field for a reason.” (9)

Heather: “As always, Lily Tomlin is a revelation.” (9)

Drew: “It is such a delight to watch a performer who has accomplished so much get a vehicle like this to really just let it all out there. What can one even say about Lily Tomlin? It’s such a pleasure to watch the ways her performance shifts depending on her scene partner. The whole cast is so good and she elevates all of them. They elevate each other really. It’s the mark of a great performer.” (8)


7. Hearts Beat Loud (2018) (8.8)

Carmen’s Autostraddle Review (2018):I don’t remember the last time I got to see young black lesbians have the opportunity to love each other like this on a big screen. In all honesty, the reason I can’t remember is probably because I never have.”

Heather: “Seems like another indie about a dying record store set in Brooklyn and a middle aged white guy who can’t grow up and let go, but Kiersey Clemons elevates that tired story and makes Hearts Beat Loud a transcendent coming-of-age lesbian (and self-) love story.” (10)

Carmen: “Part quirky coming of age, part teenage love story, this movie is capital “P” Perfection! Kiersey Clemons absolutely lights up the screen!” (10)

Kayla: “This movie just fills me with so much joy, and both Kiersey Clemons and Sasha Lane are extremely magnetic stars on the rise.” (10)

Natalie: “In an era of coming of age and first love movies that try to do too much, Hearts Beat Loud stands out for its beauty and restraint.” (8)

Drew: “This movie is so sweet and kind. Nick Offerman’s character is given a bit too much focus for my taste (especially in the grating romantic subplot with Toni Collette), but everything with Kiersey Clemons is great. And the songs are so catchy! I also appreciate the scene where she’s angsty watching Mitski videos online. Representation is important!” (7)


6. Suicide Kale (2015) (9)


Heather’s Review (2015): “Suicide Kale isn’t just some pet project your faves crafted from nothing. Suicide Kale is a REALLY good movie.”

Kayla: “It’s dark, funny, and smart, and the twist works very well!” (10)

Drew: “It is such a relief to watch a movie about queer women that’s this hilarious and smart and feels both dramatically heightened and so, so real. This movie makes everything its doing look so easy and yet it accomplishes something so rare.” (9)

Heather: “A mumblecore lesbian indie comedy with a fresh premise, a shocking (and hilarious) climax, and some hard-won hope in its resolution.” (9)

Valerie: “This sort of felt like I was spying on my friends because it felt so personal and funny and real.” (8)


5. Imagine Me & You (2006) (9.2)


Alex’s Autostraddle Review (2009): “Three reasons this movie did not suck: Piper Perabo, Lena Headley, and most importantly — the girl gets the girl in the end!”

Heather: “Straight people have Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks; we have Imagine Me & You.” (10)

Natalie: “Are there better movies? Maybe. Is this still my absolute favorite? Definitely.” (10)

Carmen: “I love that “Imagine Me & You” doesn’t pretend to be something that it’s not. This is a corny romantic comedy, in the same vein as any Julia Roberts or Reese Witherspoon classic – except it’s gay. That’s everything I’ve ever wanted in a movie, to be quite honest.” (10)

Drew: “This movie singlehandedly made me believe in love at first sight. It was deeply damaging and ruined my life. Thanks a lot!” (9)

Kayla: “This movie has its flaws, but the way it follows a conventional rom-com format but makes it super gay was so striking to me when I first saw it, and Lena Headey is enchanting.” (8)


4. Blockers (2018) (9.6)

Mey’s Autostraddle Review (2018): “This movie is the counterargument to all the straight male comedians who say there’s nothing funny about feminism. It’s full of jokes about the patriarchy and regressive sexual attitudes, and that’s a great look for the future of comedy.”

Riese: “The most underrated movie of 2018 is a genuinely funny, truly feminist and totally sex-positive take on the teenage sex romp with an adorable and perfect lesbian character.” (11)

Kayla: “This is another big comedy release that was unfortunately marketed poorly, but it’s extremely funny and smart, and its baby gay storyline made me cry and laugh!” (10)

Carmen: “Blockers” snuck up on me, and then I watched it like five times in a row! That’s how much I loved it. This is everything I want in a teen girl comedy – effervescent, a wee bit raunchy, and above all adamant in letting young women have full control and respect of their own bodies! PLUS IT’S GAY!” (10)

Heather: “I would have never watched this if Riese hadn’t become an evangelist for it, but I’m so glad I did; it’s surprisingly progressive and self-aware and gay!” (8)

Drew: “Literally everything I want from a big budget Hollywood comedy. It’s hilarious from beginning to end, all the characters are well-developed and real, and it’s at least a third gay which is the minimal amount of gay! I’ve been burned so many times by raunchy studio comedies I went with such low expectations and I left with a new favorite. Truly fantastic.” (9)


3. Appropriate Behavior (2014) (9.8)

Riese: “Desiree Akhavan is your brutally honest misanthropic anti-pixie dream girl, vacillating from hyperbolic millennial despair to Broad City-style repellant charm. Quirky, funny, and delightfully indie, chock-full of inside queer jokes that’ll surprise you and tickle your rib-cage. I would like Desiree Akhavan to be my wife?” (10)

Heather: “Look, just watch everything Desiree Akhavan ever makes. It’s all a ten.” (10)

Drew: “If I had to choose one artist making the kind of queer work I most want to see it would be Desiree Akhavan. And if I had to choose one person I’ve never met to marry it would also be Desiree Akhavan! I’m just so in love with her artistic sensibility. Her willingness to be real and messy and not worry about respectability politics of any kind makes for such great movies and television. And she’s so hot. Like… okay saving the rest for my journal because this will be publicly online, but, like, yeah.” (9)


2. But I’m a Cheerleader (1999) (10)

Drew: “This perfect gay masterpiece deserves its reputation and more. It’s a hilarious and campy treat made for queer eyes only. And Natasha Lyonne who is honorary.” (10)

Natalie: “The best lesbian movie ever made.” (10)

Kayla: “It’s a modern classic for a reason, and its grasp on lesbian-specific camp is delicious.” (10)

Carmen: “Campy, queer, perfection! “But I’m a Cheerleader” absolutely nails all of it. This indie comedy darling is as good as you’ve heard it is – it lives up to its own hype in every way.” (10)

Heather: “The most iconic lesbian movie ever.” (10)

Riese: “Hilarious and smart. The ’90s brought us some of independent film’s sharpest, snarkiest, funnest rom-coms, but none of them were gay until “But I’m a Cheerleader,” which also has a killer cast and sweet sweet lady kisses.” (10)


1. Saving Face (2005) (10)

Riese: “A perfect lesbian rom-com.” (10)

Heather: “Perfect.” (10)

Carmen: “Lesbian films that are made by and for queer women of color are their own rare, fleeting shooting star. Alice Wu’s “Saving Face” is its own damn universe – it’s more than a popcorn flick rom-com. “Saving Face” will leave your heart open and beating out its chest. True love captured on screen.” (10)

Natalie: “Alice Wu writes and directs this incredible romantic comedy about letting go of expectations and embracing your identity.” (10)

Drew: “The kind of movie that makes me feel like anything is possible, as a person, as a filmmaker. This is a romcom and yet it’s so much more. Maybe that’s unfair to romcoms, but this just feels so special. I watch so many mediocre gay love stories because they’re gay. It’s thrilling to watch a gay movie that succeeds at things its straight counterparts couldn’t even imagine.” (10)

The Autostraddle TV Team is made up of Riese Bernard, Carmen Phillips, Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya, Valerie Anne, Natalie, Drew Gregory, and Heather Hogan. Follow them on Twitter!

The TV has written 100 articles for us.

47 Comments

  1. “This movie singlehandedly made me believe in love at first sight. It was deeply damaging and ruined my life. Thanks a lot!” Drew, reading your film reviews is like reading projections of my own thoughts. Eternal mood

    • so idk if anyone else used to watch this movie occasionally with the director’s commentary on, but:

      Ol Parker wrote this movie for his wife Thandie Newton to star in, but then the timing didn’t work out with the birth of their first child. He wrote it because he fell in love with her at first sight, which, like: she’s an actress, I assume that like 1/3 of the people who meet her fall in love with her at first sight!

      Anyway, he originally wrote it as a straight love triangle but he realized everyone (Heck) would be sad and angry and it wouldn’t be anything special, so he changed it into a coming out story!

      TL:DR I LOVE this movie and I HATE it’s origins

    • This is very accurate, and I was in a significant relationship at the time the film came out.

      It is have given me this idea of what love should that is not compatible with my cynical introvert personality that takes time to be vulnerable with people.

  2. I somehow fucked up and didn’t get my review for Booksmart in but I GIVE IT A 10 BECAUSE IT GIVES ME SUCH JOY. Also @Drew as someone whose friends are constantly choosing Bohemian Rhapsody, Proud Mary, and other songs that were popular long before we were born, I would argue that Alanis was the perfect option for karaoke!!

    My 10 for Imagine Me & You might have bumped it up but I also would have been the only person who didn’t give But I’m a Cheerleader a perfect 10 so maybe it all balances out in the end. /shrug

    • But those are like staple karaoke songs!! You Oughta Know is not! I’d believe ONE of those kids would be cool enough to pick it, but they ALL knew the words!!

      It is a great karaoke song and I approve of anyone choosing it but I maintain that a room of 2019 18-year-olds wouldn’t know it.

      Sincerely,
      someone who at 18 definitely would’ve picked a song I thought was cool but nobody knew so it turned out not to be cool and then i’d just be singing alone and also realize i didn’t even know the words that well and wow working through some things here anyway Booksmart is mostly good

  3. This list is so great, and I’m psyched that Saving Face is #1. But what about Swedish queer girl movie to end all Swedish queer girl movies “Show Me Love”(A.K.A. F*cking Amal)? It’s mad old but so are a bunch of flicks on this excellent list.

  4. Iiiinteresting that Saving Face wins this, whereas But I’m a Cheerleader has topped previous overall polls. I love both films so don’t really mind either way!

    Also surprised Imagine You and Me is so high, perhaps people are wilting with nostalgia?

    Also surprised Booksmart wasn’t top three because of all these films that was probs the one I laughed out loud most to.

    Also surprised that Wild Nights With Emily was presumably rendered ineligible for this list despite the fact it is exceptionally funny. The scene where Lavinia is explaining to Austin how Emily won’t see Mabel but maybe a picture would do is surely the finest piece of comedy this century.

    Overall, this is a relatively high level of surprise.

  5. Is it just me who thinks Grandma isn’t funny it’s just kinda sad? otherwise a good list, Desiree Akhavan is a genius, But I’m a cheerleader is a masterpiece and Saving Face is brilliant

    then again I agree… D.E.B.S. deserves to be #1 comedy and action GIVE IT ALL THE CROWNS

  6. I’m so happy to see Blockers as high as it is on this list because it was honestly maybe my favorite movie of 2018?? It had an adorable lesbian that got the girl, sex-positivity, a non-stereotypical Indian-American girl, and Leslie Mann who is Peak Mommi! It’s not streaming anywhere but it’s well worth the $3.99 to rent.

    It’s hard to tell whether my undying love for Life Partners is because it’s a genuinely good movie or because it has Gillian Jacobs from Community and Leighton Meester from Gossip Girl AKA two of my biggest teen/early 20s crushes.

  7. I’m so glad there are a few I haven’t seen. Homework!

    I would also have added D.E.B.S. and Nina’s Heavenly Delights – the Scottish “Saving Face”.

    Thanks for recommendations.

  8. Seconding the Wild Nights With Emily recommendation. It’s hilarious and morbid and historically accurate.
    Booksmart has some funny moments but everyone is so mean that it’s hard to tell the characters apart and unpleasant to watch them. The main characters both get stupid love stories when they clearly should of ended up with each other.

  9. I love a LOT of the movies on this list, but I’ll tell you that I have never once seen a mumblecore movie and went “wow I relate to this, the realness, this reminds me of me and my friends.”
    They just don’t make indie movies about midwestern queers who mostly sit by fires in each other’s yards or play board games.

  10. Thanks for sorting out all these comedies. I love that we queers have so many options.
    I’m looking forward to all the lists.

    Sometimes I think back to the nineties, preinternet, trying to read between the lines of movie descriptions left on the answering machines of the local indie theater for a hint of gay content.
    You might get lucky, or you could be scarred for life with incest and necrophilia. *You never knew!*
    So yes, Dan F-ing Savage, it gets better.
    And better all the time. Thanks AS for leading the charge and showing us a range of opinions on these movies.

  11. learned through the comments that a lesbian horror/thriller/action movies list is on the way and for that I am very very excited.

    also, it seems to be a very anti-autostraddle opinion but I did not like suicide kale. it’s cast was adorable but I felt the dialogue and “plot twist” were awkward and bad.

  12. THANK YOU! Saving Face is receiving the recognition it deserves.
    Yes, it ESPECIALLY hits me hard as an Asian American, but the themes of family and acceptable are quite honestly pretty universal.

  13. I’ve only ever watched two out of these — Imagine Me and You & But I’m a Cheerleader. Imagine Me & You I watched barely two months after I realised I was trans back in 2017, and it made me feel so warm and fuzzy inside. But I’m a Cheerleader I watched way back in high school, I think, as a very repressed denial-filled egg, but I remember liking it nonetheless.

    Perhaps now that I’ve been out for more than a year and have known about my own lesbianism and womanhood for two years, I’ll have a different perspective when I watch the rest of these films. That said…. I definitely want to watch them with friends, otherwise they wouldn’t be as fun.

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