Ok, here's my list of 10 gay movies that did it right: coming out is not necessarily traumatic, gay and transgender are two different things, gay communities exist, heterosexuals are not necessarily homophobic, and no one converts in the end. Many of them offer the flip side to the 10 gay movies I hated.
The rules: the movies had to have identifiable gay/lesbian, bisexual, or trangender characters in starring roles -- not just gay-vague characters or subtexts; they had to be released after 1993 -- no classics, like Making Love or Maurice; and the gay characters can't die at the end.
It's not the 1950s Anymore
1. Beautiful Thing (1996). Flip side of Get Real: high schooler Jamie (Glen Berry) falls in love with his chum Ste (Scott Neal). Mom thinks he's a little young, but is otherwise ok with it. There's a gay community: they read The Gay Times and go to the gay bar.
3. Latter Days (2003). Flip side of Cruel Intentions. L.A. partyboy Christian (Wes Ramsey) makes a bet with his friend that he can seduce naive Mormon missionary Aaron (Steve Sandvoss), only to fall in love with him.
4. Patrick Age 1.5 (2008). Flip side of The Object of My Affection. Gay couple in Sweden (Torkel Petersson, Gustav Skarsgard) adopt what they think is a baby, but he turns out to be a homophobic 15-year old juvenile delinquent.
5. Eating Out (2004). Flip side of The Opposite of Sex. Two college roommates, one straight and the other gay (Jim Verraros, left, and Scott Lunsford), hatch a wild scheme to land their respective crushes.
6. Paranorman (2012). A kid's animated comedy about zombies -- with a twist. The zombies turn out to be friendly. Oh, and incidentally, the teenage hunk who drives the paranormal investigators around is gay.
Gay and Transgender are Two Different Things
7. Priscilla Queen of the Desert (1994). Flip side to Hedwig and the Angry Inch. Drag performers, the gay Tick (Hugo Weaving) and Adam (Guy Pearce) and the transwoman Bernadette (Terence Stamp), take a road trip across Australia, where Tick reunites with the son he didn't know he had, and Bernadette finds love with an outback bloke (Bill Hunter).
8. The Blossoming of Maximo Olivares (2005). Maxi, a feminine gay kid in the Philippines (Nathan Lopez), is perfectly integrated into his family and community. He gets a crush on a hunky cop Victor (J. R. Valentin), who befriends him, but doesn't take advantage of the situation.
9. But I'm a Cheerleader (1999). High school girl (Natasha Lyonne) is accidentally sent to a gay re-education camp run by ex-gay Mike (drag queen RuPaul), where she realizes that she's a lesbian and starts a revolt.
10. Rolling Kansas (2003). Three stoners (including Sam Huntington, left) go on a road trip in search of a secret government marijuana field in Kansas, and along the way the ever-smiling Kevin (Charlie Finn) announces that he's gay. His friends aren't traumatized, and he spends the rest of the movie asking out various cops and stoners.