Top 5 LGBT Movies/Dramas

Posted by Stephanie on June 19, 2015

Top Five

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If you’ve noticed, I’ve been on an LGBT drama/movie kick as of late. Now, in terms of Korean, Japanese, Chinese, Taiwanese, and Thai, this can sometimes be a sad, sad place to be. In my hunt, I’ve come across any number of stinkers, weepers, and nightmares. It starts off all nice and cute, and then whamo! Someone dies. Or is maimed. Or worse (trust me when I say it can get a lot, lot, lot worse). Within my time here though, I’ve been able to come across a few winners. Ones that didn’t end horribly and hit me in all the appropriate awwwwww… parts that I look for in a good drama, be it gay or straight.

So, here is a list of my top 5 LGBT Dramas (and/or Movies) {Stephanie Note: If you like this post, due to popular demand we have created a whole database of Asian LGBT Movies and Dramas. It can be found here.}

Life Is Beautiful

(Korea)life is beautiful 2

This should probably just be called the Tae Sub’s Boyfriend memorial list. You wouldn’t think that the main romance in a Korean weekend family drama would between two men, but yay, it was! This drama made me fall so hard in love with this couple. We saw just what it meant, good and bad, to be gay in this society. It made me laugh and gave me big, ugly cries. While a wedding scene for these characters was censored out, the fact that it was popular enough to get extended from 50 to 68 episodes has to tell you something. I wish I could put together an edited version with just their storyline, because, while I love this drama, this couple, and the parents, there are a lot of plotlines in this drama which are pretty terrible.

Long live Tae Sub’s Boyfriend!

Answer Me 1997

(Korea)answer me 1997

Here’s a drama and a storyline we all know and have all taken into our hearts. The unrequited love Kang Jun He had for his best friend Yoon Yoon Jae was incredibly well written. Here is a show where, if the hero had decided to dump the heroine and gone with guy who had loved him for as long as the hero’d loved the heroine, I would have been okay with that. But the fact that, through all those years, he loved him, supported him, and knew there was never any chance for them to be together broke my heart. Now, this is the standard that all B-leads should be held up to. I do wonder though, did he ever come out to Yoon Yoon Jae? We know Yoon Yoon Jae realized his love for him in the end, and that’s why he accepted Kang Jun He ‘s need to put space between them, but if he had to spend the rest of his life hiding such an important part of himself to this group of people (besides his confidant, Sung Shi Won) that’s a sad state of their friendship.

Love Sick

(Thailand)love sick

Tae Sub and his boyfriend used to be my favorite LGBT couple. Then Love Sick came around, and I got hooked. Like, mad hooked. Like, I haven’t been obsessed this hard about anything in… let’s just say, a really long time. The ongoing relationship between the Noh and Phun hits all my awwwww… buttons. (We even did a whole podcast on it.) While I don’t know for sure if these guys are going to make it to the end—as the end is not done yet—from the tone and sweetness of the drama, I have every hope. Not only are these guys making their way onto my favorite couples of all times list, Noh himself is one of the greatest characters. He is just a good guy. Now Phun, get your head out of your butt, and be worthy of him!!

Love Is Coming

(Thailand)
love-is-coming-full-trailer

This Thai movie was a nice little surprise. The story of a bunch of high school guys trying to figure out if their friend is gay, only for the story to take a step back and give us the inside scoop in flashback is adorable. You think the friends are out to haze him, but by the end, you realize they don’t care if he is gay or straight, they just want for him to be open and happy. Plus, the accepting mother in this is so sweet, she rivals Tae Sub’s mom. A small, little, coming-of-age movie, with no big trauma, is a nice switch from all the angst and misery I usually find in these movies.

Just Friends

(Korea)just friends

This is actually a last minute addition to the list, I had completely forgotten about it. SHAME ON ME. Just Friends is a short movie starring, believe it or not, the guy who later goes on to star in Marriage Not Dating. This is the story of what happens when a gay couple gets separated by military service, and the one guy’s attempt to go visit his boyfriend. You feel for the guy who has to try to explain his relationship to his boyfriend without outing him and the reality that if you are gay, not only does one half of the relationship have to go off for two years, eventually so will the other. This is fast and sweet, and I really wish it were a full movie.

Yes or No

(Thailand)yes or no

This was supposed to bet the fifth one, and now I feel bad for leaving it off, so I’m totally cheating and making it a sixth. This drama is one of the very, very few out there which shows the beginning of a lesbian relationship. What happens when a straight girl and a ‘tomboy’ are forced to room together? Romance, of course!

Honorable mentions:

This list was actually quite difficult to come up with, as there are actually some couples that I’ve found that I like more, but they are within a drama or movie itself which is terrible. For example, lately I’ve been watching the Chinese drama (which was first a movie and now a drama) Like Love. I really like love this couple 😉 However, the writer did a really bad job converting the book to the screen. They missed a lot, and you can tell from the holes in the plot and jumps in logic that you just don’t get unless you dug up the book translation (of which I’ve only been able to find the first 17 chapters). But again, I really like this couple (and I’m fairly certain it’s not because An Ziyan is smokin’ hot.) If you do dig this up, I want to say, I’m recommending the TV version rather than the movie one, as the movie has one explicit scene which is soooo badly done, so badly shot, it is just TERRIBLE. Like they shot it and then never actually edited it at all.

The other one I enjoy watching is Takumi Kun from Japan. This is a series of movies where the production value is looooow, super low, and the scripts are not so good, but I love the couple.

And one last honorable mention, it’s not terrible like the others just not enough to get onto the already bloated top ‘five’. Doushitemo Furetakunai from Japan. It’s love-in-a-workplace setting between the straight boss and the, what has to be clinically depressed, new gay hire.

 

This list was so old, I thought it needed a re-do. You can find it here.

14 Comments

  • Reply DBChen June 19, 2015 at 3:54 pm

    I agree about Life Is Beautiful. If there was a version with just Tae Sub and Kyung Soo, Tae Sub’s parents, his grandmother, and his older uncle who managed a resort, I would have been happy.

    Just Friends was the first Korean LGBT movie I saw and thought it was cute.

    A few other Asian LGBT movies l liked were:
    1) Two Weddings and a Funeral — Korean
    2) Drifting Flowers — Taiwanese
    3) Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow — Taiwanese

    Have you seen them and what did you think?

    • Reply Stephanie June 19, 2015 at 4:28 pm

      That is the exact version of the drama that I would want too! Younger uncle and the sisters were pretty unbearable. Oh, and the grandfather. Ugh. Thanks for the recommendations–I’m always looking for more I kind of have to just stumble on them and the outcome is usually never good! I haven’t seen them, I did look around for Two Weddings and a Funeral but had trouble getting it subbed but it looks like that and Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow just showed up on one of my sites. I’ll keep you updated!

      • Reply DBChen June 20, 2015 at 10:16 am

        The other relatives were useful for the way they reacted to Tae Sub, but otherwise…

    • Reply Nocturnalux April 28, 2016 at 11:49 am

      About Doushitemo, I recommend avoiding the subpar movie entirely and sticking to the source material, namely the manga by the same name.

  • Reply DBChen June 20, 2015 at 10:15 am

    I saw these on Netflix and Dramafire.

  • Reply MC Johnston June 29, 2015 at 8:50 am

    You’ve got all my favorites on your list. Life is beautiful, what can I say I loved Tae Sub and Kyung Soo so much watched all 50 plus episodes just to see them together. I did find a vid on you tube that had only their moments with everything else cut out. Just friends is so sweet and way too short. I was so happy to find a BL that didn’t involve one of them dying. TT_TT Takumi kun movies are a bit low budget but I still watch them when I need a BL fix. Takumi and Gii are just so sweet together. And Love Sick – I like what they have done with the story for the most part. And it’s so rare to get any BL in dramas that I have no problem watching even if it’s got a few flaws.
    I haven’t watched Two Weddings and a Funeral yet but I hear it really good.

  • Reply DBChen July 21, 2015 at 11:13 pm

    The other night I dreamt that Song Chang Eui and Lee Sang Woo were filming a kiss scene for Life is Beautiful when someone pranked SCE by pantsing him. It obviously was a NG. Oh, if only it was a real BTS scene.

    By the way, he was wearing dark red boxers.

  • Reply Jayjay August 17, 2015 at 8:46 am

    hey.. How about Takumi-kun ? Have you seen it ? 🙂

    • Reply Stephanie August 17, 2015 at 9:11 am

      I have–a bunch! I personally really like it but, due to terrible video quality and some not great story telling, I couldn’t put it on the list. You can find it in pieces on Youtube and if you’re a fan, I recommend you looking for a fan made video that someone put together using flash backs from the last 4 movies, deleted and behind the scenes videos to make a version of the first movie using the later Gii and Takumi. Way better than the actual first movie they put out.

  • Reply Linda December 12, 2015 at 10:45 pm

    Doushitemo Furetakunai is a movie!? I love the manga! I’ve gotta watch it!
    I think I’ll definitely check out Life is Beautiful and Answer Me 1997 too~

    • Reply Stephanie December 14, 2015 at 10:59 am

      Let me know how you like them!

  • Reply Becky July 9, 2016 at 9:07 pm

    Can you give links to these dramas? I was looking on Viki and they don’t have ANY of them, so I don’t know where to look 🙁

    • Reply Cherry Cordial July 9, 2016 at 11:31 pm

      Becky, you’re right, most of them aren’t available at mainstream sources, unfortunately. About the only one I could find was Answer Me 1997 on DramaFever. I know a few others are available at Kiss Asian, I saw Life is Beautiful and Love Sick there, so maybe they have some of the others too.

    • Reply Nocturnalux July 9, 2016 at 11:41 pm

      I do not know about these dramas in particular but avistaz has a very qide selection of Asian media. I suggest you try it but keep in mind you will need to keep your upload ratio positive.

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