bi on screen

New series alert!

I’ve been thinking about writing more about bisexual representation. I’ve read quite a few books with bisexual characters, so I thought it might be interesting to branch out into films!

Now, a couple of things: I am not going to be reviewing movies that I’ve already seen. I haven’t watched a lot of queer films so that’s not too much of a problem. But that is why I will not be looking at films such as Brokeback Mountain or The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. I am also not currently looking to review TV series, as I have limited patience with TV. I have however already watched The Bisexual, so if you would like me to review that, just let me know.

I’m going to be looking out for different tropes about bisexuals, including: slutty bisexual, cheating bisexual, and evil bisexual. I’m also going to see whether the word bisexual is actually used, and what genres bisexual characters tend to feature in.

Some of the films that apparently have bisexual characters include:

  • Duck Butter (2018) – Two women, who are dissatisfied with the dishonesty they see in dating and relationships, decide to make a pact to spend 24 hours together hoping to find a new way to create intimacy.
  • Sunday Bloody Sunday (1971) – Divorced working woman Alex and well-to-do Jewish family doctor Daniel Hirsh share not only the same answering service but also the favours of young Bob Elkin who bed-hops between them as the mood takes him. Both Alex and Dr Hirsh are aware of the other’s existence but prefer to live with the situation rather than risk losing Elkin completely. But a wet winter weekend in London can be difficult.
  • Appropriate Behaviour (2014) – Shirin is struggling to become an ideal Persian daughter, politically correct bisexual and hip young Brooklynite but fails miserably in her attempt at all identities. Being without a cliché to hold onto can be a lonely experience.
  • Frida (2002) –  A biography of artist Frida Kahlo, who channeled the pain of a crippling injury and her tempestuous marriage into her work.
  • Black Swan (2010) – A committed dancer struggles to maintain her sanity after winning the lead role in a production of Tchaikovsky’s “Swan Lake”.
  • Atomic Blonde (2017) – An undercover MI6 agent is sent to Berlin during the Cold War to investigate the murder of a fellow agent and recover a missing list of double agents.
  • Disobedience (2017) – A woman returns to her Orthodox Jewish community that shunned her for her attraction to a female childhood friend. Once back, their passions reignite as they explore the boundaries of faith and sexuality.
  • Tully (2018) – A struggling mother of three forms an unexpected bond with the night nanny hired to help with her newborn baby.
  • Kinsey (2004): A look at the life of Alfred Kinsey, a pioneer in the area of human sexuality research, whose 1948 publication “Sexual Behavior in the Human Male” was one of the first recorded works that saw science address sexual behavior.
  • The Kids Are All Right (2010) – Two children conceived by artificial insemination bring their biological father into their non-traditional family life.
  • Margarita With A Straw (2014) – A rebellious young woman with cerebral palsy leaves her home in India to study in New York, unexpectedly falls in love, and embarks on an exhilarating journey of self-discovery.
  • Kaboom (2010) – A sci-fi story centered on the sexual awakening of a group of college students.
  • Professor Marston and the Wonder Women (2017) – The story of psychologist William Moulton Marston, and his polyamorous relationship with his wife and their mistress who would inspire his creation of the superheroine, Wonder Woman.
  • The Lobster (2015) – In a dystopian near future, single people, according to the laws of The City, are taken to The Hotel, where they are obliged to find a romantic partner in forty-five days or are transformed into beasts and sent off into The Woods.
  • Being John Malkovich (1999) – A puppeteer discovers a portal that leads literally into the head of movie star John Malkovich.
  • The Pillow Book (1996) – A woman with a body writing fetish seeks to find a combined lover and calligrapher.
  • Imagine Me & You (2005) – A newlywed bride becomes infatuated with another woman, who questions her sexual orientation, promoting a stir among the bride’s family and friends.
  • Lady Bird (2017) – In 2002, an artistically inclined seventeen-year-old girl comes of age in Sacramento, California.
  • Colette (2018) – Colette is pushed by her husband to write novels under his name. Upon their success, she fights to make her talents known, challenging gender norms.
  • Bohemian Rhapsody (2018) – The story of the legendary rock band Queen and lead singer Freddie Mercury, leading up to their famous performance at Live Aid.
  • The Favourite (2018) – In early 18th century England, a frail Queen Anne occupies the throne and her close friend, Lady Sarah, governs the country in her stead. When a new servant, Abigail, arrives, her charm endears her to Sarah.
  • Lizzie (2018) – In 1892, after the Borden family welcomes a new Irish maid called Bridget Sullivan, she and Lizzie become friends. The friendship between these women becomes something more, even as Lizzie’s relationship with her own parents unravels at a frightening level.
  • Can You Ever Forgive Me? (2018) – When Lee Israel falls out of step with current tastes, she turns her art form to deception.
  • Orlando (1992) – Young nobleman Orlando is commanded by Queen Elizabeth I to stay forever young. Miraculously, he does just that. The film follows him as he moves through several centuries of British history, experiencing a variety of lives and relationships along the way, and even changing sex.
  • Sorry Angel (2018) – Jacques is an older writer from Paris. Arthur is a young student in Rennes. They instantly fall in love. But they’ll have to face rejection and sickness to keep it that way.
  • The Hours (2002) – The story of how the novel “Mrs. Dalloway” affects three generations of women, all of whom, in one way or another, have had to deal with suicide in their lives.

It is obviously difficult to know without watching these films whether they do have bisexual characters, as a lot of reviews don’t specifically say bisexual, but rather use ‘gay’, ‘lesbian’, or ‘queer’. So, if any of these films doesn’t have bisexual characters, let me know! Also if there are any films that I’ve left out, leave a comment!

3 thoughts on “bi on screen

  1. christine @ lady gets lit says:

    I would be so interested in hearing your thoughts about these films! I’m really behind on watching movies in general, but I’m always a little wary when it comes to checking out queer films. I’ve yet to find a movie that really gets it right, at least for me.

    Liked by 1 person

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