Emily Bashforth shares her favourite queer girl flicks
BY EMILY BASHFORTH
When Hollywood fails to represent the LGBTQ+ community in their blockbusters, independent filmmakers take it upon themselves to do the job for them. YouTube is home to many LGBTQ+ short films, which can either make your sides split from laughter, your eyes sting from tears of sadness or your heart swell out of sheer love. Many of YouTube’s finest LGBTQ+ short films aren’t always given the recognition they deserve. So, we’ve curated a list for you of some of the website’s finest lesbian and bisexual short films, which you can binge-watch to your heart’s content. These short films, made by small yet talented filmmakers, have beautiful girl-on-girl stories and are heart-warming, sometimes heartbreaking, depictions of LGBTQ+ love. Oh, and they don’t portray LGBTQ+ women in harmful or stereotypical ways! So, what are you waiting for? Grab some popcorn, put your feet up and get watching…
The Two of Us
The Two of Us tells the heartbreaking story of two girls whose relationship has been confined to an isolated cabin in the desert. After harbouring their love for one another, away from society’s eyes, for quite some time, Sophia has the urge to announce their relationship to the world, Amanda, however, is fearful of coming out. This leaves the girls at a crossroads, and ultimately, forced to make a difficult decision. The Two of Us is such a beautiful, yet sad, depiction of a hidden lesbian relationship. It perfectly portrays both the joy and pain that comes with keeping something so special, so secret and, unfortunately, is a scenario many LGBTQ+ couples will relate to.
This short film perfectly describes the struggles all too many school girls face when battling with their own identity they develop a crush. It’s Okay focuses on the obstacles one may face when feeling confused about their sexuality, such as potential rejection from friends and family members. It portrays the frustration and upset suppressing your true self can bring and, ultimately, acts as a reminder to anyone in a similar position that who you are is absolutely nothing to be ashamed of.
When their college bus doesn’t arrive, Lucy and Jamie are forced to make their own way there. Along the way, they discover that they have more in common than they first realised. This simple yet effective short film is a great example of the purity that comes with being young and having your first girl crush.
Based around the song SHE by Dodie, this spine-chillingly stunning queer short film uses music, not dialogue, to depict the closeness of two best friends and explore the innocence of their bond. But, when an unexpected kiss interrupts a sleepover, will they break apart or grow closer together? The beauty of this film lies in the fact that it tells such a real story using so few words. It really does tugs on the heart strings.
Fast Hearts follows two women who meet by chance at a roadside and spend a whirlwind weekend in each other’s company. This short film builds up slowly then the climax comes all at once. Before you know it, it’s over and you’re left hanging on for more. Fast Hearts is powerful, thanks to the poignant silences between the characters. Its cinematography is killer, too. What makes this film so special is how exciting it is. Sparks fly and magic is made in such a short and sweet amount of time. It places something perfect in the palm of your hand and leaves your heart feeling warm, even when it’s taken away from you.
If short films with a twist are your thing, you’ll love Unspoken. When Emily struggles to fit in with her ‘popular girl’ roommate, meeting Morgan is just what she needs. Morgan becomes a close friend and someone she can talk to. She is also someone who aids Emily on her path to discovering herself. But when Emily finally plucks up the courage to tell Morgan how she feels, will the love be reciprocated? Emily’s innocence and overwhelming affection for Morgan is what makes this film so touching. Even if things don’t end quite how you expect or hope them to, Unspoken is an important reminder to all of us to tell the people we care about how we really feel when we have the chance.
A Private Matter
A young woman returns to her rural hometown to visit her family, from whom she hides the fact that she is a lesbian. But, when her outgoing partner defends her girlfriend and announces her own sexuality, it has disastrous consequences. This incredible short film perfectly explores an abuse of trust, the sickening realities LGTBQ+ women face every day simply for being who they are and recognises that many of them don’t get a happy ending. As heart-shattering as A Private Matter is, it will also make anyone’s heart burst with it’s beautiful depiction of the young couple’s unity and love for one another during a terrible time.
The Not Bucket List
A young lesbian couple truly live in a love bubble. They have the world at their feet and the rest of their lives ahead of them, or at least they wish they did. When tragedy strikes, Madison takes it upon herself to continue living her life, not just for herself, but for Lily too. This short film has a unique storyline and is a great example of offering the viewer a glimpse into something beautiful and then snatching it away from them when they least expect it. But, the audience is still left rooting for love throughout. This endearing film ought to be on everyone’s (not) bucket list to watch.
Girl Night Stand
When brunette Katie encounters a confident, life-loving blonde and they spend the night together, she begins to question her sexuality, due to this being her first experience with a woman. She spends the next day mulling over last night’s excitement in her head but will she ever see the woman again? If you’re a fan of comedy, you’ll love this comedic short. Katie’s one-liners and awkward personality will crack you up and, undoubtedly, give you someone to relate to. We all do and say things without thinking when we’re around our crush, right?
This incredibly short, yet incredibly sweet, short film is about a 1900s lesbian couple, caught between their devotion for one another and what society expects them to be. They are faced with a choice, move on from one another and live life as a lie or shout their love from the rooftops and live unashamedly. Which will they pick? What makes this short film so special is that it allows us to reflect on how much the world has progressed in such a short time. It provides hope that, one day, society will be even more inclusive, and it reminds us that LGBTQ+ women have been fighting for acceptance long before any of us were even born.
Kiss & Tell
Morgan is confused about her sexuality. She thinks she’s straight but, when dared to kiss best pal Sarah at a party, her confusion is only amplified. But, there’s a problem, Sarah is dating Nick – a boy – and Morgan is pretty certain that her feelings for Sarah are only one-sided. When an intoxicated Sarah confesses to Morgan that her relationship isn’t as perfect as people think, it prompts Morgan to speak out too. What makes this film so perfect is how true to life it is. Many young girls experience identity confusion and many have crushes on their girl friends too, so you’ll probably find some comfort when watching this, knowing Morgan is going through the same thing.
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