WARNING: This article might not be for someone of a homophobic constitution, so if it offends your delicate, bigoted sensibilities, kindly refrain from reading.

LGBTQ+ – a topic that’s never been a part of “normal” conversation, a topic that’s so deeply ingrained into the mind of the average Indian as “taboo” or “wrong” that people find themselves uncomfortable when it arises, a topic that’s been, pardon the pun, begging to be let out of the closet that it’s been pushed to.

However, we the millennials are fortunate enough to have been witness to some of the most bold, beautiful and unapologetic creations of art that celebrate the LGBTQ community, made by equally bold, beautiful and unapologetic individuals.

So to celebrate the bravery of these exemplary men and women, here are 6 unforgettable movies:

  1. Aligarh:
    A movie critically acclaimed both internationally and domestically, for its poignant portrayal of the truth; Aligarh manages to steal one’s breath away. From the loneliness and heartbreak of the genteel Ramchandra Siras, to the ugly, concerted way in which his colleagues and the university authorities try to break his spirit. The film is set in the months following the 2009 Delhi high court ruling that held Article 377 unconstitutional and decriminalized homosexuality – the verdict was overturned by the Supreme Court in 2013. Its effect heartbreaking, searing; the movie paints a picture (based on true life events) of a gay man, among an ultra – conservative society, who strives for justice and desires only to love and be loved.

  1. Pink Mirror:
    Pink Mirror is a tragically funny story that tugs at your heart strings. Said to be the first Indian film to focus completely on Indian Transsexuals, it is a look into the country’s closet. The story revolves around the relationship of two transsexuals, Bibbo and Shabbo and a gay teenagers’ attempt to seduce a man. A movie critically applauded for its ‘sensitive and touching portrayal of marginalized community’ which has also won numerous accolades, in various International Film Festivals and yet remains banned in India till this date, Pink Mirror is definitely worth that illegal torrent download *wink* *wink*.

  1. Margarita With a Straw:
    A beautiful movie that shines with the brilliance of a thousand burning stars, Margarita with a Straw, draws you in, makes you adore it and teaches you that love comes in all forms. The film narrates a story of a young woman, Laila who is wheel – chair bound with cerebral palsy. It tells of her journey from New Delhi to New York, of her journey in dealing with pain and heartbreak, of her journey in discovering her sexuality, of discovering love and accepting herself for who she is. The film focuses on the joy and possibility of life, of fragile hearts and fragile souls, of acceptance, of love. This film is a must watch.

  1. Arekti Premer Golpo:
    The complexity and raw emotion in this tale about a transgender filmmaker Abhiroop Sen and her obsession with her bisexual lover, is what makes Arekti Premer Golpo a masterpiece. It was the first film to hit the cinemas after section 377 was decriminalised. The film focuses on the psychological distress faced by transgenders and your heart will ache for Rituparno Ghosh as Abhiroop in this unforgettable movie.

  1. Memories in March:
    Memories in March revolves around a bereaved mother coming to terms with the death of her son and his homosexuality and her son’s equally bereaved significant other, Ornab; it is a film that pays tribute to love, loss, life and acceptance. It is a film delicate and strong, restrained and bold, lovely and tragic – a living contradiction. A film worth every second of its play time.

  1. LOEV:
    A story about three men, with two of them a couple, and a weekend trip that makes them look at what love really is. This recently released Indie flick has had initial positive feedback from Critics and the intelligentsia at various International Film Festivals, soon to premiere at the 18th Mumbai Film festival. Taking into account India’s Criminalisation of same sex love, it has been hailed as “quietly revolutionary”

Honourable Mention:

Ka Bodyscapes, a Jayan K. Cherian movie, about Three young people, Haris, a gay painter; Vishnu, a rural kabaddi player, and their friend Sia, an activist who refuses to conform to dominant norms of femininity, struggle to find space and happiness in a conservative Indian City, has been banned repeatedly by the CBFC. In a rejection letter sent to the filmmaker, A. Prathibha, regional officer of the CBFC in Thiruvananthapuram, wrote: “The revising committee felt that the entire content of the Malayalam feature film Ka Bodyscapes is ridiculing, insulting and humiliating Hindu religion, in particular portraying Hindu Gods in a poor light. Derogatory words are used against women.” It is disappointing to say the least

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