sapphic period pieces
Atomic Blonde - Set in November 1989 on the eve of the collapse of the Berlin Wall, this spy thriller follows M16 agent Lorraine Broughton as she attempts to recover an important stolen item. Along the way she encounters Delphine Lasalle, a rookie french agent. The usage of two different contrasting themes of lighting in this movie is very striking.
Carol - Based off the 1952 lesbian romance novel “The Price of Salt,” Carol is set in New York City in the early 50s. It follows the love affair between Therese Belivet (an aspiring photographer and department store worker) and Carol Aird (a wealthy mother going through a divorce.) It’s a stunning portrayal of gay friendships and romance during a violently homophobic time.
Desert Hearts - Released in 1985 and set in 1959, this romantic drama is often hailed as the first film to present a positive portrayal of lesbianism. It follows Vivian Bell, a english professor in her mid thirties hoping to obtain a quick divorce and Cay Rivvers, a younger and free spirited sculptor.
Farewell, My Queen - French romantic drama set in 1789 during the last three days of Marie Antoinette, seen through the eyes of a young servant who reads to the queen. It discusses rumours of the queens alleged orgies with women and has a very subtle, entirely queer tone.
Heavenly Creatures - Psychological drama documenting the real life Parker-Hulme murder case. The plot centers around the obsessive and concerning relationship between two teenage girls, Juliet and Pauline. It covers their meeting in 1952 all the way through to the murder they commit together in 1954. The girls bond over a shared history of disease, and begin to indulge in delusions of a rich fantasy world and cult-like religion. Its a frightening look into the lives of the two seemingly normal teenager girls who teamed up to kill Pauline’s mother and only served five years for their crime.
San Junipero - Not technically a film, and not technically set in the past but I think it still counts! This episode of black mirror is praised for having a more hopeful & uplifting tone than the rest of the series and is first set during the 80s, following a lesbian named Yorkie and Kelly, a bisexual woman.
The Girl King - Biographical drama portrayal of the life of Christina, Queen of Sweden. Christina is a brilliant, powerful, and striking figure fighting conservative forces in her country. The film tracks her mission to modernize sweden and follows her awakening sexuality, yet another thing that sets her apart from former rulers.
The Handmaiden - South Korean erotic psychological lesbian revenge thriller. I can honestly say this is one of the most well directed and captivating lesbian films ive ever seen. Sook-Hee, a orphaned Korean pickpocket becomes the handmaiden to a wealthy Japanese Heiress and with the intention to assist a conman in relieving her of her inheritance. It’s loosely inspired by Sarah Waters novel “Fingersmith” but set in Korea under Japanese rule. The male gaze towards lesbians is a reoccuring theme and is accurately portrayed as a disgusting and vile thing in a way i didnt expect a male director to be able to manage.
The Hours - British-American drama based off the novel of the same name. It follows three different queer women of three different eras, all connected through Virgina Woolf’s novel “Mrs. Dalloway.” Clarissa is a bisexual new yorker in the early 2000s, planning an award party for a poet with AIDS. Laura is a pregnant 1950s housewife trapped in an unhappy marriage and Virgina Woolf is a novelist in 1920s england struggling with mental illness under the watchful and suffocating eye of her husband.
The Miseducation of Cameron Post - One of the newest releases, this film just came out this year! Set in 1993 and based off the novel of the same name by Emily M. Danforth, teenager Cameron is caught in the backseat of a car with the prom queen. Her aunt (a devout christian) ships Cameron off to a religious gay conversion camp called God’s Promise. The film documents the struggles, pain, and violence of existing in a space with no place for you.
So far all the title cards for the Banana Fish anime episodes have been references to works by American writers.
Ep 01 - “ A Perfect Day for Bananafish ” - J. D. Salinger
Ep 02 - “ In Another Country ” - Ernest Hemingway
Ep 03 - “ Across the River and into the Trees “ - Ernest Hemingway
Ep 04 - “ This Side of Paradise “ - F. Scott Fitzgerald
Ep 05 - “ From Death to Morning “ - Thomas Wolfe
Ep 06 - “ My Lost City “ - F. Scott Fitzgerald
Ep 07 - “ The Rich Boy “ - F. Scott Fitzgerald
Ep 08 - “ Banal Story “ - Ernest Hemingway
Ep 09 - “ Save Me the Waltz “ - Zelda Sayre Fitzgerald
Ep 10 -