Upcoming LGBTQ+ Cinema in 2022
It’s incredibly important to look at the history of queer activism that has allowed the public to experience the diversity we benefit from in the film industry today. We looked at films discussing the history of LGBT+ rights activism for last year’s LGBT+ History Month.
This year, to celebrate LGBT+ history month, aligning with Barnes Film Festival’s ethos of promoting and supporting emerging filmmakers, we take the time to look at fresh and engaging new films by queer filmmakers about the LGBT+ experience.
2021 was a triumphant year for LGBT+ cinema, with stellar performances in non- queer films by queer actors like Lady Gaga in House of Gucci and Kristen Stewart in Spencer, as well as LGBT+ themed releases such as Benedetta, Flee, the Fear Street trilogy, Ride or Die, and My Name is Pauli Murray.
Now, though, it’s time to look at eight new queer movies which will be taking the spotlight in 2022.
Directed one of the most famous LGBT+ directors on the planet, Pedro Almodovar, Parallel Mothers is another new queer release worthy of mention. It is, undoubtedly, an example of what Almodovar does best: a powerful, inspiring motherhood drama. The film explores themes such as single parenting, teenage pregnancy, forgiveness and jealousy, and takes an unapologetically firm political stance against the Franco dictatorship.
My Policeman is an adaptation of Bethan Roberts’s 2012 novel, which tells the story of a school teacher and a policeman whose happy relationship starts to crumble after he falls in love with another man. It’s set in the ‘50s in Brighton, at a time where same-sex relationships were illegal. Its cast includes Harry Styles and Emma Corrin, whose chemistry has already sparked the interest of music fans and film critics alike.
Described as a romantic thriller and directed by emerging director Grafton Doyle, Dope Queens tells the story of a wild night out in San Francisco’s Tenderloin, the world’s first legally recognized transgender district. The cast is the film’s strongest asset, featuring Alexandra Grey (Empire) and Trace Lysette (Hustlers), even including RuPaul’s Drag Race winner Kylie Sonique Love.
Love in Color
A film by first-time feature director Sammi Cohen, Love in Color is an upcoming coming-of age romantic comedy. It stars young queer actresses Auli’i Cravalho and Rowan Blanchard as two high school girls who fall in love after joining their high school track team. The movie will be produced by Natasha Lyonne, star of the universally acclaimed LGBT+ Netflix series Orange Is the New Black and the 1999 lesbian rom-com But I’m a Cheerleader!.
After a brilliant performance in the queer television series Pose, Billy Porter is set to make his directorial debut this year. What If? focuses on Khal, a boy who asks for advice on the online discussion platform Reddit after realising he has a crush on Kelsa, a transgender girl at his school. The lead role will be played by rising star Yasmin Finney, a 17 year old Black trans actress from Manchester. The film is based on a real Reddit post, which adds to the charm of this romantic comedy scheduled for release in late 2022.
Written and directed by Jewish and gay writer and actor Billy Eichner, who also starred in the film, Bros is the first gay romantic comedy to be produced by a major studio. The Universal Pictures feature includes an all LGBT+ main cast, playing heterosexual roles (for a twist). It wrapped filming recently and is scheduled to hit theaters this August.
A new version of the 1980’s classic horror film Hellraiser is scheduled for release later this year. It is directed by David Bruckner and stars transgender actress Jamie Clayton, already known for the iconic queer Netflix series Sense8 and lesbian show The L Word: Generation Q, as the gender-swapped demon Pinhead.
Am I Ok?
Director Tig Notaro and her wife Stephanie Allynne teamed up to make Am I Ok?, a comedy-drama film which premiered at Sundance last month. Am I Ok? tells the story of best friends Jane and Lucy, when one of them gets a promotion to move to London and the other comes out as gay. The film features superb performances by veterans Dakota Johnson and Sonoya Mizuno.
Written by Serena Orano