Every Foreign Lesbian Movie & International TV Show Worth Watching

Lesbian Movies & TV

In my expansive and never-ending quest to find good lesbian movies to watch, I’ve come across many great foreign sapphic films. These WLW movies often are more thoughtful and pleasant to watch than American based lesbian movies. Some even have happy endings!

Perhaps the fact that some of these have made it into mainstream U.S. means that they are higher quality in general, but nevertheless, if you love foreign movies and TV shows or just want some well-made lesbian entertainment, here is a list of the best international foreign films and TV shows/mini series featuring lesbian main characters and storylines.

International Lesbian Movies & Foreign Films:

1. Kyss Myg (Kiss Me) or With Every Heartbeat - Swedish Film 

Kyss Mig (Kiss Me) Swedish Lesbian Foreign International Movie

One of my favorite lesbian movies of all time, Kiss Me is also one of the best foreign lesbian films to have made it to the mainstream. It’s a Swedish drama about a young woman, Mia, who is engaged to be married to a man named Tim, but then finds herself falling in love with her soon-to-be stepmother's daughter, Frida after they first meet at their parents' engagement party. 

The movie touches beautifully about the topics of discovering yourself, coming out, infidelity, etc. There’s a lot of great chemistry between the leading actresses and well-done, classy yet sexy romantic scenes.

The film also won the "Breakthrough Award" at the 2011 AFI Festival. Now we know to leave it to the Swedes to produce a high quality sapphic movie.

Does it have a happy ending? Yes! 🌈

👀 Watch the trailer here.

🎥 Watch the full movie here.

2. The Handmaiden - Korean Film

the handmaiden best lesbian foreign movies

This Korean lesbian film took me by surprise when I first watched it. I wasn’t expecting such an original suspenseful storyline filled with so many pleasant plot twists, along with the dark cinematography, lavish costumes, but it all worked well together. 

The movie is about a woman who is hired as a handmaiden to a Japanese heiress, but secretly she is involved in a plot to defraud her.

The Handmaiden is actually one of Chia’s favorite lesbian movies of all time and I certainly enjoyed watching it. The best part is that it has a happy ending!

Be warned there are definitely some graphic scenes with lots of physical contact between the leading ladies.

Does it have a happy ending? Yes! 🌈

👀 Watch the trailer here.

🎥 Watch the full movie here.

3. Portrait of a Lady on Fire - French Film

Portrait of a Lady on Fire Best Foreign Lesbian Movie

Portrait of a Lady on Fire continues to be on many people’s list of best lesbian movies of all time and it is no secret why. 

It was selected for the Palme d'Or at the 2019 Cannes Film Festival and won the Queer Palm at Cannes, becoming the first film directed by a woman to win the award. It also won the award for Best Screenplay at Cannes and was nominated for the Critics' Choice Awards and Golden Globe Awards for Best Foreign Language Film and chosen by the National Board of Review as one of the top five foreign language films of 2019. That’s an impressive list of accolades for a lesbian movie!

The movie combines elements of great storytelling, good acting and rich cinematography featuring 18th century costumes and staging. If you’re also a fan of historical fiction dramas, then Portrait of a Lady on Fire is a great foreign film to add to the list.

This historical drama is set in France in the late 18th century and tells the story of a lesbian affair between an aristocrat and a painter commissioned to paint her portrait. While it doesn’t have the traditional happy ending you’d want, it’s a masterpiece nonetheless.

Does it have a happy ending? No, but no one dies.

👀 Watch the trailer here.

🎥 Watch the full movie here.

4. Blue is the Warmest Color - French Film

blue is the warmest color best foreign lesbian movieThe French are serious when it comes to producing great lesbian films and Blue is the Warmest Color is one to remember and widely viewed as one of the best lesbian movies of all time.

The movie is a combination of a coming of age, coming out, and budding lesbian relationship that evolves over time between the two main characters, Adèle and Emma. 

Adèle's life is changed when she meets Emma, a young woman with blue hair, who allows her to discover desire and to assert herself as a woman and as an adult. In front of others, Adèle grows, seeks herself, loses herself, and ultimately finds herself through love and loss.

To be honest, I tend to be more biased towards movies with happy endings, but it was the winner of Palme d'Or and nominated for a BAFTA Award and the Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Language Film. So who am I to judge?

Be warned that the movie is 3 hours long and includes some very loong romantic scenes with no restraints… so get those multiple rounds of popcorn ready before you start the movie.

Does it have a happy ending? No, but no one dies.

👀 Watch the trailer here.

🎥 Watch the full movie here.

5. La Luciérnaga (The Firefly) - Colombian Film 

La Luciérnaga the firefly best foreign lesbian movies

Regarded as the first Colombian lesbian film, La Luciérnaga is a fresh movie with a plot that is certainly original…I mean how many lesbian movies or movies in general do you have where the main character falls in love with and enters into a lesbian relationship with her deceased brother’s fiancee and it all ends happily?!

But if you give the movie a chance, it is actually very well done and the romance between the two female characters develops organically without feeling forced. 

Does it have a happy ending? Yes! 🌈

👀 Watch the trailer here.

🎥 Watch the full movie here.

6. Anne+: The Film - Dutch Film

Anne+: The Film Best Lesbian Foreign Film

This movie took me back down memory lane of my college years and gave me all the vibes of being in my early 20s again. It’s about the main character, Anne, a 20-something lesbian in Amsterdam, who is under pressure to finish her novel as she moves to Montreal to be with her girlfriend but goes back and forth between coming to terms with what she really wants in life. 

I came across Anne+: The Film after watching the short TV miniseries, Anne+. The movie is a continuation of the TV series so I’d recommend watching the TV series first before the movie. 

Does it have a happy ending? For the most part...

👀 Watch the trailer here.

🎥 Watch the full movie here.

7. La Belle Saison (Summertime) - French Film

Summertime best lesbian foreign movies to watch

Another French lesbian movie! La Belle Saison is about these two women Carole and Delphine who meet and fall in love during the 70s. Both are coming to terms with their sexuality and struggle with living openly and being public about their relationship. When Carole follows Delphine back to her family farm, the two find that lesbianism and feminism are not as accepted in the countryside. The two go through the ups and downs of trying to make it work. 

Does it have a happy ending? Yes, but they don’t end up together.

👀 Watch the trailer here.

🎥 Watch the full movie here.

8. Room in Rome - Spanish FilmRoom in Rome Best Foreign Lesbian Movies to Watch

If I were to summarize this movie in a sentence, it’s basically, “two women meet and hook up all night in a hotel room together”. I mean there’s certainly nothing wrong with that… and in between the lovemaking there’s a lot of pillow talk so you get to learn more about the two women’s back stories. Nothing crazy, psycho, or scary happens in the film either so that’s a plus! 

Does it have a happy ending? Yes! 🌈

👀 Watch the trailer here.

🎥 Watch the full movie here.

9. Benedetta - Italian Film

benedetta best foreign lesbian film

Based on a true story, Benedetta is a psychological drama about a 17th-century nun in Italy who suffers from disturbing religious and erotic visions. She is assisted by a companion, and the relationship between the two women develops into a romantic love affair. 

This movie is definitely not one of those feel-good, girl gets the girl happy endings. It’s dark, intense, and suspenseful. Overall, it’s still a high quality film worth watching if you’ve exhausted your list of new lesbian movies to watch.

Does it have a happy ending? Meh

👀 Watch the trailer here.

🎥 Watch the full movie here.

10. Blush - Israeli Film blush best lesbian international movies

A coming of age, Israeli movie about two teenage girls who fall in love with each other. One is a teenage girl who uses alcohol, drugs and friends to escape her troubled home and the other is a free-spirited girl who recently moved into town. The two fall in love almost immediately and give each other's lives new meaning. 

Does it have a happy ending? Yes, but they don’t end up together.

👀 Watch the trailer here.

🎥 Watch the full movie here.

11. Tove - Finnish Film

tove best lesbian international movies

A historical and biographical lesbian movie, Tove centres around the early life of author and illustrator Tove Jansson, dating back to her life from the world wars to the mid-1950s, showing both her personal relationships with people such as Vivica Bandler and Atos Wirtanen, the creation of the Moomin characters and her popular book series. The film got seven Jussi Awards, including Best Film and Best Actress.

Does it have a happy ending? Yes! 🌈

👀 Watch the trailer here.

🎥 Watch the full movie here.

12. Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga (How I Felt When I Saw That Girl) - Indian Film

Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga Best International Lesbian Movies to Watch

A young Punjabi woman must contend with her traditional family that wants her to get married, a writer who is completely smitten with her, and a secret that she harbors close to her heart.

This bollywood movie is quite silly at times but does touch upon some heart wrenching topics of coming out and living your authentic life while grappling with not wanting to bring shame and disappointment to your culture and family. 

It’s filled with some fun lighthearted humor along with singing and dancing to keep you entertained throughout. Definitely an enjoyable to watch and gives the audience the happy ending that they want.

Does it have a happy ending? Yes! 🌈

👀 Watch the trailer here.

🎥 Watch the full movie here.

13. Thelma - Norwegian Film

Thelma Foreign Lesbian Movies to Watch

Thelma tells the story of a sheltered young woman who discovers she has an inexplicable power that materializes when she feels attraction towards a female student at her university in Oslo, Norway. Thelma begins to experience extreme seizures and soon learns that the violent episodes are a symptom of inexplicable, and often dangerous, supernatural abilities that manifests as she explores her romantic desires. 

This is a supernatural psych thriller with well-done visual effects and an interesting storyline. It’s not the happiest of endings or a feel-good movie, but it’s certainly a high quality film.

Does it have a happy ending? Debatable, but no one dies

👀 Watch the trailer here.

🎥 Watch the full movie here.

International Lesbian TV Shows & Mini Web Series

1. Anne+ (Completed, Seasons 1-2) 

Anne+ Best Foreign Lesbian Mini Series to Watch

Anne+ is a Dutch drama series based on the main character, Anne who is trying to navigate her early twenties as a young lesbian. Upon bumping into her ex-girlfriend one day, Anne reflects on how her past relationships have contributed to who she has become. Each episode is short and centered around a past or present relationship. 

The show is relatable, engaging, and well-done for a smaller Indie production and the series eventually got turned into a film called Anne+: The Film available on Netflix.

🎥 Watch the series here.

2. Amar a Muerte (Love to Death) - Completed, Season 1, 87 Episodes)

Juliantina amar a muerte best foreign lesbian tv shows

When Chia first discovered the telenovela, Amar a Muerte, she became obsessed with the lesbian romance and storyline between “Juliantina”. I’m pretty sure she binged watched all 87 episodes in like a day. I don’t blame her because #Juliantina is worth watching – they are adorable and you just can’t keep your eyes off of them and rooting for them the whole time. 

There is even a mini TV series spinoff based on Juliantina if you wanted to just skip straight to that.

The actual show itself is a complex soap opera story about a Mexican telecommunications mogul who was murdered on his wedding day at same time that a hired assassin in the U.S. is executed by the electric chair. One gets reincarnated into the other’s body and each man has to deal with a new body, as well as adapt to a new soul.

🎥 Watch the series here.

3. Kontrola (Control) - Ongoing, Seasons 1-2

kontrola foreign lesbian tv series

Kontrola is a Polish mini series that started out as a school project but immediately garnered a lot of views and attention worldwide and consequently became a web series. It focuses on the relationship between two former lovers, Natalia and Majka, who reconnect after a few years. There’s a lot of great chemistry between the two main actresses and it’s just a sexy love story to watch overall!

🎥 Watch the series here.

4. Nevertheless, - (Completed, Season 1, 10 Episodes)

soljiwan nevertheless best korean foreign lesbian shows

This Korean TV series features a cute lesbian love story between two of the prominent characters featured on the show, known by their ships name as #Soljiwan. To be honest, we didn’t pay much attention to the main storyline and pretty much skipped through to all the parts of the story featuring Soljiwan… but if you’re due for another Netflix binge, you can catch this K-drama on Netflix. 

🎥 Watch the series here.

 

We hope you enjoy this list of the best international and foreign lesbian films/shows to watch!



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