PSHE Films

These are some of the best videos we have found online about being LGBT+.

Whether you show them at lunchtime, in and assembly or during a PSHE lesson, they are an engaging and thought-provoking way to promote awareness and stimulate discussion.

When fashion model Geena Rocero first saw a photo of herself in a bikini, “I thought ... you have arrived!” As she reveals, that’s because she was born with the gender assignment “boy.” In this moving talk, Rocero tells the story of becoming who she always knew she was.

Why must I come out?

Geena Rocero [9.59]

Artist iO Tillett Wright has photographed 2,000 people who consider themselves somewhere on the LGBTQ spectrum and asked many of them: Can you assign a percentage to how gay or straight you are? Most people, it turns out, consider themselves to exist in the grey areas of sexuality: not 100% gay or straight.

Fifty Shades of Gay

Jenni Chang and Lisa Dazlos [18.18]

In this powerful talk, Thomas Lloyd talks about taking pride in owning his identity and the strength that stems from that ownership.

Why am I so gay?

Thomas Lloyd [22.23]

“I was the mystery of an anatomy, a question asked but not answered,” says poet Lee Mokobe, a TED Fellow, in this gripping and poetic exploration of identity and transition. It’s a thoughtful reflection on bodies, and the meanings poured into them.

A powerful poem about what it feels like to be transgender

Lee Mokobe [4.21]

In a funny talk with an urgent message, LZ Granderson points out the absurdity in the idea that there’s a “gay lifestyle,” much less a “gay agenda.” What’s actually on his agenda? Being a good partner — and being a good parent.

The Myth of the Gay Agenda

LZ Granderson [17.51]

Karen McCrocklin is on a mission to celebrate the gift of being gay. As a storyteller, writer and radio host, she is committed to changing the narrative to include the idea that LGBT+ people are here to elevate the collective consciousness and teach us about how we are more alike than we are different. Karen also believes that being born a lesbian is the best thing that could have ever happened to her.

The Gift of Living Gay

Karen McCrocklin [16.48]

LGBT+ films

In 1980s Italy, a romance blossoms between seventeen year-old Elio and a doctoral student working as an intern for Elio’s father.

Call Me By Your Name (rated 15)

Simon Spier keeps a huge secret from his family, his friends, and all of his classmates: he’s gay. When that secret is threatened, Simon must face everyone and come to terms with his identity.

Love, Simon (rated 12A)

Based on real-life events, this uplifting film follows the efforts of UK gay activists (Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners) to help miners during the national strikes that took place in 1984.

Pride (rated 15)

Three drag queens, one of whom is also a transgender woman, travel across Australia from Sydney to Alice Springs, to perform at a hotel owned by the main character Anthony’s separated wife. The three experience homophobia and acceptance in the small communities they visit along the way, and Anthony worries about what his son who he hasn’t seen for years will think of his sexuality and profession.

Priscilla Queen of the Desert (rated 15)

Tanner is unwillingly outed by his classmates and is quickly adopted as a “gay best friend” by three competing popular girls, who try to use him to further their own reputations. The film also follows Tanner’s relationship with his three best friends. The film is an amusing examination of stereotypes of gay men and lesbians, and of the worries and difficulties of coming out as gay, voluntarily or otherwise, at secondary school.

Gay Best Friend (rated 15)

A chronicle of the childhood, adolescence and burgeoning adulthood of a young, African-American, gay man growing up in a rough neighbourhood of Miami.

Moonlight (rated 15)

During World War II, the English mathematical genius Alan Turing, who was charged with ‘gross indecency’ and convicted with the criminal offense of homosexuality, tries to crack the German Enigma code with help from fellow mathematicians.

The Imitation Game (rated 12)

Young Pakistani-Londoner Omar is handed control of his uncle’s run-down laundromat, and hires an old school friend, Johnny, seemingly a young thug, to work for him. The two soon begin a romantic relationship, which along with the drug-related work they perform for Omar’s uncle’s associates, they must keep hidden. Omar also finds himself attracted to his uncle’s Westernised daughter, Tania, and despite turning the laundrette into a successful business, finds himself conflicted between his Pakistani immigrant identity and relationship with Johnny.

My Beautiful Laundrette (rated 15)

A musical set in 1980s New York, at the height of the HIV/AIDS epidemic, the story follows a diverse group of friends as they battle disease, poverty and drug addiction and learn to live life to the full despite not knowing how long it will last. The group all wish they could emulate the relationship between Collins, an HIV-positive gay man who teaches philosophy at MIT, and Angel, a gender-nonconforming, and also HIV-positive, street performer, who seem to find with each other a deep and meaningful love before Angel’s tragic early death.

Rent (rated 12)

A top student begins tutoring a school rebel who comes from a very different economic background and set of life experiences. They develop a mutual crush, but are torn apart by their differences when they are unable to put words to their emotions and embark on a journey of self-discovery. The film examines the uncertainty of being a teenager, and how for many under-privileged teenagers there can be very little choice in how they live their lives.

Mosquita Y Mari (no certificate)

Members of the advocacy group ACT UP demand action by government and pharmaceutical companies to combat the AIDs epidemic in the early 1990s.

120 BPM (rated 15)

Sixteen-year-old Rhiannon falls in love with A, a mysterious spirit who inhabits a different body every day. Feeling an unmatched connection, Rhiannon and A try to find each other on a daily basis, always unsure of what or who the next day will bring. Soon, the realities of loving someone who is a different person every 24 hours starts to take its toll, leaving Rhiannon and A to face the hardest decision either has ever had to make.

Every Day (rated 12A)

Therese Belivet spots the elegant Carol perusing the doll displays in a 1950s Manhattan department store. The two women rapidly develop a bond that becomes a love with complicated consequences.

Carol (rated 15)

LGBT+ documentaries

Content notice: contains homophobic language and discussion of suicide. In this documentary, former Wales and Lions rugby union captain Gareth ‘Alfie’ Thomas - arguably the most famous gay international sports star - takes a hard-hitting personal look at what he sees as the last bastion of open homophobia in sport: professional football.

Gareth Thomas – Hate in the Beautiful Game (BBC)

This documentary follows the story of Chaz Bono, son of the famous duo Sonny and Cher Bono, as he goes through the process of gender reassignment, covering the medical and legal procedures he undergoes as well as the response of the media. Chaz was assigned female at birth and named Chastity, and decided to make a documentary about his transition in order to help people in a similar position to him. The film features interviews with Chaz’s family and partner, and documents their attempts to understand his gender identity, and as his mother persists in referring to him as “she” it is clear that some continue to struggle.

Becoming Chaz (no rating)

A film biography of stand-up comedian Tig Notaro’s life after a performance of new material about her breast cancer diagnosis at a Los Angeles comedy club, which made her a viral sensation. The documentary follows Tig’s life in the year after that performance, during which she deals with working as a comedian across America, a new relationship, trying to have a child as a same-sex couple and coping with her mother’s death.

Tig (rated 12)

Filmed in the 1980s this landmark documentary examines New York ball culture - competitions in which contestants must “walk”, much like runway fashion-shows. They were judged according to how well they express a theme, the beauty of their clothing and their dancing ability. The scene was populated mainly by Black and Latino members of the gay and transgender community. The film documents both the balls themselves, and the lives of the participants who group themselves into “Houses” that serve as surrogate families for young people who were frequently ostracised by their own families because of their sexuality or gender expression. The filming style of this documentary allows it to brilliantly capture a historic microcosm of LGBT+ communities, and allows the participants to speak for themselves about their experiences of racism, homophobia, HIV/AIDS and poverty

Paris is Burning (rated 15)

See also

A documentary about reconciling homosexuality and Biblical scripture, arguing that Church-sanctioned homophobia is based on a deliberately malicious misreading of the Bible.

For The Bible Tells Me So

In 2017, the BBC ran Gay Britannia, a season of programming marking the 50th anniversary of The Sexual Offences Act 1967, which partially decriminalised homosexuality

Gay Britannia Season (BBC)

The It Gets Better Project works to show LGBT+ youth the levels of happiness, potential and positivity their lives can reach through collecting the accounts of LGBT+ people from across the world.

It Gets Better

Britain’s first openly gay rapper, QBoy, explores why more and more teenagers are coming out as LGBT+ at an earlier age, and what it is like to be a young LGBT+ person in Britain.

Coming Out to Class (All 4)