Published: 17th February 2021

Ten films for teens this LGBT History Month

Parents tell us that films can be a great springboard starting conversations.

To celebrate LGBT History Month this February, we’ve rounded up ten top film picks for teens. We’ve got something for everyone, from documentaries to dramas. All theses movies are rated either 12A/12 or 15. 


Love, Simon

moderate sex references, infrequent strong language

Love, Simon is a US comedy drama in which a closeted gay teenager falls for his anonymous email pen pal.

If you enjoyed this film, then you can also have a go at rating the trailer.

Sex

There are moderate verbal sex references throughout, including non-graphic references to masturbation, penis size and levels of sexual experience. A character refers to 'butt sex'. Another says his classmate looks like he 'got gang-banged by a TJ Maxx'.

Language

There is infrequent use of strong language ('f**k'). Milder terms include 'slutty', 'bitch', 'shit', 'dicks', 'assholes', 'balls', 'screw' and 'crap'. There is also infrequent use of homophobic terms including 'fag' and 'fruity'. Discriminatory language and behaviour are not endorsed by the film as a whole.

There is a very brief reference to solvent abuse when a teacher warns students not to 'huff' the paint cans they are using. Another scene contains a mention of marijuana.

The Prom

moderate sex references, language, discrimination

The Prom is a musical comedy in which a group of Broadway performers visit a small Indiana town to support a teenager who has been excluded from her school prom because of her sexuality.

A girl is repeatedly subjected to bullying and unfair treatment because of her sexuality, though this is not condoned by the film. In one scene, she finds two toys in her locker, posed in a sexualised position, with a note that says 'Hello, my name is LEZ'. In another, she is referred to as a 'lesbo'.

There is moderate bad language ('bitch'), as well as mild terms such as 'shit', 'piss', 'ass', 'crap', 'God', 'hell', 'damn' and 'balls'.

There is a verbal reference to masturbation, and a use of the term 'MILF'.

Ma Vie En Rose

Ma Vie En Rose is a French language drama, subtitled in English, about a young boy who wants to grow up to be a woman. Told from a child’s perspective, the film explores his family’s discomfort, and people’s lack of understanding and tolerance of young Ludovic’s ideas of his gender and identity.

Ma Vie En Rose is a French language drama, subtitled in English, about a young boy who wants to grow up to be a woman. Told from a child’s perspective, the film explores his family’s discomfort, and people’s lack of understanding and tolerance of young Ludovic’s ideas of his gender and identity. The film was first classified in 1997, when the 12A category had yet to be introduced. It was therefore rated 12 for the theme of gender issues, threat of domestic violence, and some strong language.

At one point in the film there is a single use of strong language, the term ‘p***k’. The discriminatory term ‘bent’ is occasionally used by Ludovic’s classmates, to insult him, but the film’s theme of transgender and gender issues is handled sensitively and responsibly throughout. Other language is more moderate, with uses of ‘bloody’ and ‘shits’.

The language used is sometimes aggressive in tone, with a sense of menace and threat in the family home, as Ludovic’s determination to become a girl causes real problems for the family with their employers and neighbours, and at his school. There is a growing sense of frustration and anger from his parents. In one scene his father, unable to understand and come to terms with his son’s behaviour, pushes his wife over the couch and later raises his fist to her. However, the tone is occasionally lightened by some elements of fantasy, such as the appearances of a life-sized Monde De Pam (Pam being the equivalent of Barbie), who acts as a type of fairy godmother to Ludovic.

12A/12 means that the film is suitable for people aged 12 or older. Anyone younger than 12 may only see it in the cinema if accompanied by an adult.

Freak Show

moderate violence, discrimination theme, sex references, strong language

Freak Show is a US comedy drama in which an eccentric teenager struggles to find acceptance at his conservative high school.

Violence

A teenage boy is attacked by a gang of bullies, leaving him unconscious with streaks of blood on his face. In a later scene, two teens get into a brief fistfight.

Discrimination

The main character is verbally and physically abused by his classmates, who use homophobic slurs (e.g. 'faggot', 'queer', 'homo', 'fudge-packer') and hurl projectiles at him in the school hallway. However, the film carries a resolutely anti-discrimination message.

Sex

There is a scene in which it is implied a teenage boy has an erection in gym class, which causes him embarrassment. There are also references to anal sex.

Language

There is infrequent strong language ('f**k'), alongside milder terms like 'prick', 'bitch', 'dick', 'asshole', 'crap' and 'pissed'.

There is also an isolated reference to self-harm when a girl is described as 'a cutter for Christ'. An older character is depicted as being an alcoholic, and there is a reference to abortion.

All In My Family

discriminatory references

All In My Family is a US documentary in which a gay couple each father a child through surrogacy.

Discrimination

There are references to the filmmaker's family struggling to come to terms with his homosexuality, and objecting to the prospect of him fathering children. These views are not endorsed by the film as a whole.

There is mild bad language ('bullshit', 'piss').

Moonlight

strong language, sex, sex references, drugs misuse

Moonlight is a US drama following the impact of a young man's upbringing, relationships and surroundings across three periods of his life.

Language

There is occasional use of strong language ('f**k', 'motherf**ker'), and frequent racial language ('nigga') used informally between black characters. There is also use of homophobic language in a scene in which an adult explains to a young boy that 'faggot' is an offensive term.

Sex

Scenes of sexual activity include implied masturbation and penetration, and in one scene a character wakes up following a 'wet dream'. Strong verbal references are made to oral sex and intercourse.

Drugs

There are scenes of drug dealing and characters smoking 'crack' and marijuana. The work as a whole does not condone or endorse drugs misuse.

Infrequent scenes of moderate violence include a boy being beaten by a gang of bullies, with subsequent sight of his cut and bloodied face.

God’s Own Country

strong sex, language

God’s Own Country is a romantic drama in which a young man struggling with both his sexuality and the challenges of running the family sheep and cattle farm falls in love with a Romanian migrant worker engaged for the lambing season.

Sex

Scenes of strong sex include vigorous thrusting, male buttock nudity and implied oral sex.

Language

There is strong language ('f**k'). There are also infrequent uses of the terms 'Paki', 'gypo' and 'faggot'.

Other issues include a scene in which a dead lamb is skinned.

The Kids Are All Right

contains strong sex, hard drug use and language

The Kids Are All Right is a US drama in which a lesbian couple's family is thrown into turmoil when the children's father arrives, looking to form relationships.

Sex

Scenes include people in various sexual positions, but there is no graphic imagery. There is brief sight of pornographic videos being played on a television screen, although no strong detail is visible.

Drugs

In one scene teenagers snort lines of cocaine as an act of rebellion, although the work as a whole does not condone or promote drug misuse.

Language

There is occasional use of strong language ('f**k').

Booksmart 

strong sex references, language, sex, drug misuse

Booksmart is a US comedy in which two hard-working high school students let loose and party the night before their graduation.

If you enjoyed this film then you can have a go at rating the trailer. 

Sex

There are frequent comic sex references, including to masturbation, pornography, oral sex and sexual positions. There is also a scene in which it is implied a young woman digitally penetrates another woman.

Language

Strong language ('f**k', 'motherf**ker') occurs throughout, along with milder terms such as 'shit', 'ass' and 'bitch'. There are also uses of 'nigga' in song lyrics.

Drugs

Two teens accidentally take a drug and begin hallucinating, and there are references to smoking marijuana. The work as a whole does not condone or glamorise drug misuse.

There are infrequent, undetailed references to sexual violence.

The Adventures Of Priscilla Queen Of The Desert

The Adventures Of Priscilla Queen Of The Desert is an Australian comedy drama in which two drag queens and a transgender woman cross the outback in a tour bus to stage a show at a remote resort.