Home » Tracing the evolution of lesbian cinema, from ‘Go Fish’ to ‘Love Lies Bleeding’

Tracing the evolution of lesbian cinema, from ‘Go Fish’ to ‘Love Lies Bleeding’

by NBC News

Since the dawn of Hollywood, movies have played a prominent role in both the invisibility and visibility of lesbians. Even though the blatantly homophobic Hays Code era ended in the 1960s, it’s only been in the last 30 years that queer women have been able to be out in front of and behind the camera, quite literally showing the diversity of a community that encompasses a wide range of identities within one shared culture.

“There are little waves of momentum,” said filmmaker and historian Jenni Olson. “Being able to point to something that succeeds helps other filmmakers.”

In 2024, the fruits of lesbian labor can be seen in wide-release films like “Bottoms,” “Drive-Away Dolls” and, most recently, “Love Lies Bleeding,” but they’re just the latest in a series of moments Sapphic cinephiles are gifted once every few years. These moments started with the advent of openly lesbian films in the 1980s, with dyke bars and film festivals playing the polyamorous vampire flick “The Hunger,” the bisexual athletic drama “Personal Best” and Donna Deitch’s adaptation of Jane Rule’s 1950s divorce ranch romance “Desert Hearts” practically on a loop.

Alex McArthur, Helen Shaver, Patricia Charbonneau and Andra Akers a publicity photo for “Desert Hearts.”Samuel Goldwyn / Getty Images

“There genuinely were not enough lesbian films,” said Olson, a former programming director at San Francisco’s Frameline LGBTQ film festival. She said lesbians got tired of being relegated to smaller theaters to watch the same films year after year, and recalled a “lesbian riot” erupting at the festival.

“The legend is that they stormed the projection booth,” Olson said, noting it led to a changing moment.

Seeking to help women and other marginalized filmmakers see their projects across the finish line, Frameline’s board brought in women like Olson to work with their gay male counterparts and launched a Completion Fund in 1990. The early ’90s was already…

Read the full article here

Have information to send to Urban New Now? Contact our reporters. Advertising inquiries? Contact us. Opinions? Email us.

You may also like

About Us

Urban News Now is your number one website for the latest news affecting the Black community. Follow us now to get the news and updates that matters to you.

Feature Articles

Subscribe to our newsletter to get the latest news and updates. Let's stay updated!

Copyright © 2023 Urban News Now – All Right Reserved

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More