15 LGBTQIA+ movies to watch if you liked Love, Simon

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The Way He Looks (Hoje Eu Quero Voltar Sozinho)

If you ask any gay person what the most annoying things about gay movies are, they’ll probably mention the depressing endings, the low budgets, the overt sexuality and maybe the fact that most of the good queer films are foreign. There’s nothing wrong with foreign films, of course, but sometimes it’s comforting to watch a movie that takes place in a more relatable setting. But we’re not going to complain about queer representation; we’ll take it where we can get it!

The Way He Looks is a 2014 Brazilian coming-of-age film about a blind teenage boy named Leo. He has overprotective parents who try to control his life, and a best friend named Giovana who always walks Leo home from school, despite living in the opposite direction. Leo’s also bullied by his classmate, Fabio, who won’t even sit behind him because he doesn’t want to be stuck assisting him.

When a new student named Gabriel arrives at school, Leo and Giovana befriend him. Soon, it’s Gabriel who’s walking Leo home instead of Giovana, which starts to upset her. The two boys start becoming closer and closer, and it soon becomes apparent that there may be some feelings there.

When Gabriel forgets his sweater at Leo’s, Leo promises to bring it to him the next day, and spends the night smelling the sweater. When Leo gets mad about a Spin The Bottle incident at a party he attends with Giovana and Gabriel, Gabriel plants a kiss on him to shut him up (which he later blames on the alcohol, so typical).

It’s refreshing to see a gay teen movie that is so sweet, but still touches on the sexuality that is prevalent in the life of a gay teen. Also, it goes without saying that it’s even more refreshing to see a romantic gay narrative focused on a teenager with a disability. That’s so rarely seen in romantic films, let alone gay romances, that it no doubt sets this movie apart from all the others.