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The 12 Best Lesbian Animation Movies You Should Already Have Seen By Now!

The 12 Best Lesbian Animation Movies You Should Already Have Seen By Now!

In the realm of animation, the focus on diverse and authentic relationships has become increasingly prominent, with the best lesbian animation movies emerging as a vital part of this narrative. These films celebrate the vibrant and multifaceted experiences of LGBTQ+ individuals, particularly lesbian characters, using animation’s boundless creativity to traverse fantastical landscapes and tell powerful stories.

This genre has proven itself a significant and influential medium for both storytelling and representation, capturing the complex emotions and experiences of its characters.

This article delves into the world of animation movies that courageously showcase lesbian characters, offering a glimpse into their unique journeys, struggles, triumphs, and, above all, love. With a focus on inclusivity and acceptance, these films break away from traditional norms, challenging stereotypes and fostering a more inclusive cinematic landscape.

From enchanting tales to poignant narratives, these animations have redefined storytelling, showcasing the rich tapestry of human emotions and relationships. Join us as we celebrate these groundbreaking works that contribute to a more inclusive and empathetic cinematic experience.

Best Lesbian Animation Movies

Wondering where to watch? It depends on where you live in the world and which streaming services you have. We link to the streaming service we watch on in each case - be it Netflix, Amazon Prime, Apply TV+, or elsewhere.

You can get one month free of Amazon Pride (or a 6-month trial for students) of Amazon Prime and also get immediate access to FREE Two Day shipping, Amazon Video, and Music. While you won't be charged for your free trial, you'll be upgraded to a paid membership plan automatically at the end of the trial period - though if you have already binged all these, you could just cancel before the trial ends.

Apple TV+ also has a one-week trial, and Hulu has a one-month trial (which can be bundled with Disney!). Another option might be using a VPN to access Netflix titles locked to other regions. Netflix is now available in more than 190 countries worldwide and each country has a different library and availability. US Netflix is (understandably) one of the best. 

While we wish everything could just be in one place - for now, it seems these are the best streaming platforms to watch on.

Liz and the Blue Bird (2018)

Liz and the Blue Bird is a Japanese animated film directed by Naoko Yamada, a notable figure in the anime industry recognized for her exceptional directorial skills and insightful storytelling. Yamada has gained prominence for her work on Kyoto Animation productions, including the critically acclaimed A Silent Voice and K-On! Her films often delve into the emotional complexities of human relationships, portraying them with remarkable depth and authenticity.

The film centers on the friendship of two high school girls, Mizore Yoroizuka and Nozomi Kasaki, who are members of their school’s concert band. Their friendship is tested as they approach graduation and face the prospect of pursuing separate paths. Through the lens of a musical composition, the film artfully explores themes of youth, friendship, and the bittersweet nature of growing up.

Liz and the Blue Bird subtly addresses lesbian themes through the close bond between Mizore and Nozomi. The film delicately explores the complexities and nuances of their relationship, inviting contemplation on the nature of friendship and deeper emotional connections.

Viewers should watch Liz and the Blue Bird for its beautiful animation, emotive storytelling, and nuanced exploration of interpersonal relationships. The film’s intricate narrative and compelling characters offer a unique and thought-provoking cinematic experience. Whether drawn to animated films or intrigued by explorations of human emotions, this movie is a must-watch, offering a poignant reflection on the complexities of young adulthood and the power of deep connections.

The Case of Hana & Alice (2015)

The Case of Hana & Alice is a Japanese animated film directed by Shunji Iwai, an esteemed filmmaker known for his unique storytelling and visually arresting cinematography. Iwai began his career as a writer before transitioning to directing in the early 1990s. Notable for his ability to capture intricate human emotions and relationships, his previous works include Love Letter (1995) and All About Lily Chou-Chou (2001).

The film follows the story of two high school girls, Hana and Alice, who become entangled in a mystery surrounding a missing classmate. Alice is a transfer student, while Hana is her eccentric and imaginative neighbor. The plot unfolds as they delve into their classmate’s disappearance, unraveling secrets and developing a deep bond in the process.

Central to the narrative are subtle lesbian undertones, portraying a delicate exploration of burgeoning same-sex attraction. The film delicately navigates themes of friendship, love, and self-discovery. The relationship between Hana and Alice is depicted with care, adding layers of emotional depth to the storyline.

The Case of Hana & Alice is a delightful film that beautifully combines a heartwarming tale with elements of mystery and adolescence. The animation style is enchanting, infusing the story with a dreamlike quality that enhances its emotional impact.

For those seeking a tender exploration of young love and friendship, this film offers a compelling narrative and a visually captivating experience. It’s a poignant depiction of the complexities of teenage emotions and relationships, making it a worthwhile watch for both animation enthusiasts and those intrigued by heartfelt storytelling.

In A Heartbeat (2017)

In a Heartbeat is an animated short film directed by Esteban Bravo and Beth David. Esteban Bravo, a graduate of the Ringling College of Art and Design, specialized in character animation, while Beth David, a fellow alumnus, focused on storytelling and directing. Their collaboration on In a Heartbeat marked a significant achievement in both their careers.

The plot revolves around a closeted young boy named Sherwin, who experiences an unexpected heart-pounding moment when his heart literally pops out of his chest and pursues his crush, Jonathan. This whimsical manifestation of emotions vividly portrays the challenges and courage involved in expressing one’s feelings, especially in the context of LGBTQ+ themes.

The film beautifully touches upon the emotions and experiences of young LGBTQ+ individuals, shedding light on the complexities of acceptance and self-discovery. It subtly portrays the internal struggle faced by Sherwin as he grapples with his emotions and fears of revealing his true self to the world.

In a Heartbeat is a heartwarming and visually stunning animation that captivates its audience with its endearing characters and emotionally resonant story. The delicate handling of LGBTQ+ themes offers a compelling narrative, showcasing the power of love and acceptance. This short film is a testament to the talent and creativity of its directors, making it a highly recommended watch for its relatable storytelling, captivating animation, and meaningful message of embracing one’s identity and feelings.

Paradise Kiss (2011)

Paradise Kiss is a film directed by Takehiko Shinjo, a notable figure in the Japanese film industry. Shinjo has garnered acclaim for his adeptness in adapting manga into compelling cinematic narratives. His works often delve into themes of youth, romance, and self-discovery, aligning with the core essence of the film in question.

The film follows the story of Yukari Hayasaka, a high-achieving student who meets a group of eccentric and talented fashion design students known as Paradise Kiss. Led by the enigmatic George, they coax Yukari into becoming their runway model for an upcoming fashion show. As Yukari navigates this unfamiliar world of fashion, she grapples with her own aspirations and desires, leading to a journey of self-realization and liberation.

Notably, the film explores lesbian themes through the character Miwako, a member of Paradise Kiss. Miwako’s relationship with her girlfriend, Arashi, is sensitively portrayed, shedding light on the complexities of same-sex relationships and societal acceptance.

Paradise Kiss is a recommended watch for its captivating portrayal of youth, ambition, and unconventional love. The film seamlessly weaves together fashion, romance, and self-exploration, offering a unique perspective on the complexities of identity and the pursuit of one’s passions. With its engaging plot and well-developed characters, this film is a vibrant and thought-provoking cinematic experience that will resonate with a diverse audience.

The Breadwinner (2017)

The Breadwinner is an animated film directed by Nora Twomey, an accomplished Irish animator and director. Twomey co-founded the animation studio Cartoon Saloon, renowned for its distinctive storytelling and artistic approach. She gained recognition through films like The Secret of Kells (2009) and Song of the Sea (2014), establishing a reputation for compelling narratives and striking visuals.

The film portrays the life of Parvana, a young girl living in Taliban-ruled Afghanistan. When her father is unjustly arrested, Parvana disguises herself as a boy to support her family and find her father. The film delves into themes of gender discrimination, resilience, and the power of storytelling as a means of escape and survival.

The film subtly explores LGBTQ+ themes through the character of Shauzia, Parvana’s friend, who desires a life beyond traditional gender roles and societal constraints. Their friendship becomes a symbol of support and defiance against the oppressive environment they navigate.

The Breadwinner is a poignant and visually stunning film that sheds light on the harsh realities of life under Taliban rule, especially for women. The animation is both beautiful and emotionally evocative, adding depth to the narrative.

The film’s message of courage and determination in the face of adversity is universally relevant and inspiring. Viewers seeking a thought-provoking and visually captivating cinematic experience should watch The Breadwinner to gain a deeper understanding of the human spirit’s resilience and the importance of hope amidst dire circumstances.

Persepolis (2007)

Persepolis, an animated film directed by Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud, is a powerful and poignant autobiographical tale that offers a unique glimpse into a tumultuous period of Iran’s history and the complex emotions of a young girl growing up amidst a revolution.

Marjane Satrapi, an Iranian-born French director and author, is renowned for her graphic novels that often delve into themes of personal and political identity. Her collaboration with Vincent Paronnaud for Persepolis marked a successful transition of her acclaimed graphic novel to the animated film medium.

The film’s narrative follows Marjane, offering a coming-of-age story set against the backdrop of the Iranian Revolution and its aftermath. It chronicles her experiences, struggles, and growth as a young girl navigating the restrictive sociopolitical climate. The story delves into the challenges of being a young, rebellious woman in a conservative society, adding depth and layers to the narrative.

In Persepolis, themes of sexuality and personal identity are explored, including the portrayal of lesbian characters. The film confronts the constraints and expectations imposed on individuals regarding their sexual orientation, shedding light on the complexities of self-acceptance and societal norms.

Persepolis is a must-watch for its captivating storytelling, beautifully executed animation, and its unflinching exploration of personal and political realities. The fusion of Marjane Satrapi’s personal narrative with animation creates a compelling cinematic experience that provides insight into a world often misunderstood.

Persepolis invites viewers to ponder the universal themes of identity, freedom, and the human spirit, making it an essential watch for anyone seeking a deeper understanding of personal struggles amidst a backdrop of revolution and change.

Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet (2014)

Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet is a cinematic adaptation directed by Roger Allers, known for his extensive involvement in animated films. Allers has notably directed The Lion King (1994), a revered Disney classic. His expertise in animation shines through in this film, seamlessly blending various animation styles to illustrate the poetic themes of Kahlil Gibran’s work.

The film revolves around the story of Mustafa, a poet and philosopher, who is placed under house arrest in a fictional city. Mustafa imparts his wisdom and philosophies to the townspeople, covering themes like love, freedom, work, and more.

This narrative structure allows the film to incorporate nine segments, each interpreted by a different animator, adding a unique visual dimension to the storytelling. Also, this modern adaptation embraces inclusivity and diversifies the character dynamics, adding depth and relevance to the storyline.

Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet is a captivating cinematic experience, beautifully crafted and emotionally engaging. It offers not only a feast for the eyes with its stunning animation but also a feast for the soul with its profound philosophical messages.

The incorporation of contemporary themes like LGBTQ+ representation enriches the narrative, making it appealing to a wider audience. For those seeking artistic brilliance coupled with thought-provoking storytelling, this film comes highly recommended. Watch it to be inspired, moved, and enlightened by the wisdom it imparts.

The Girl Who Leapt Through Time (2006)

Mamoru Hosoda, a prominent figure in the realm of Japanese animation, directed The Girl Who Leapt Through Time. Hosoda, recognized for his unique storytelling and captivating visuals, has made a significant mark in the animation industry with films like Wolf Children, Summer Wars, and Mirai.

The Girl Who Leapt Through Time follows the tale of Makoto Konno, a high school student who discovers she possesses the ability to leap through time. Initially using her newfound power for frivolous gains, she soon realizes the consequences of her actions and begins to grapple with the complexities of altering destiny.

The film subtly explores themes of adolescence, friendship, and the passage of time. It delicately presents the emotional nuances of young love and personal growth, depicting the struggles and epiphanies that come with youth. One aspect worth noting is the subtle inclusion of lesbian characters and themes within the narrative. While not the central focus, these elements add layers of diversity and representation to the story, contributing to its inclusivity.

The Girl Who Leapt Through Time is a must-watch for anyone seeking a blend of engaging storytelling, beautiful animation, and thought-provoking themes. Hosoda’s deft direction ensures that the audience is not only entertained but also left contemplating the profound ideas it presents. It is a cinematic experience that will resonate with a wide audience and leave a lasting impression.

Sausage Party (2016)

Sausage Party is an animated film directed by Conrad Vernon and Greg Tiernan. Conrad Vernon, known for his work on Shrek 2 and Monsters vs. Aliens, joined forces with Greg Tiernan, acclaimed for his expertise in directing animated series, to helm this unconventional and daring animation project.

The plot revolves around anthropomorphic grocery items in a supermarket who live blissfully unaware of their fate upon being purchased. However, one sausage, Frank, voiced by Seth Rogen, discovers the horrifying reality and sets on a journey to reveal the truth to his fellow groceries. The narrative uses humor and satire to explore existential and religious themes, questioning conventional beliefs and societal norms.

In Sausage Party, lesbian characters Teresa del Taco and Brenda Bunson, voiced by Salma Hayek and Kristen Wiig, respectively, play significant roles. The film includes a lesbian innuendo scene between these characters, adding an element of diversity and representation to the animated feature.

Despite its controversial and adult-themed humor, Sausage Party is an audacious and inventive animation that challenges traditional animation boundaries. The film offers a unique perspective on consumerism, religion, and societal conformity, making it a thought-provoking experience for those willing to embrace its irreverent approach. If you enjoy adult humor, satire, and appreciate animations that push the envelope, Sausage Party is worth watching for its comedic ingenuity and unconventional storytelling.

When Marnie Was There (2014)

When Marnie Was There is an animated film directed by Hiromasa Yonebayashi. Yonebayashi is a prominent Japanese animator and director associated with Studio Ghibli, renowned for his meticulous craftsmanship and ability to portray complex emotions. He began his career at Studio Ghibli under the mentorship of Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata, contributing to iconic films such as Spirited Away before making his directorial debut with The Secret World of Arrietty.

The film follows Anna, a young, introverted girl struggling with feelings of loneliness and alienation. Upon being sent to the countryside for health reasons, Anna discovers an enigmatic mansion and forms a deep bond with Marnie, a mysterious and ethereal girl residing there. As their friendship blossoms, Anna unravels the mansion’s secrets and her connection to Marnie.

Subtle undertones of romantic affection and intimacy between Anna and Marnie have been noted, suggesting lesbian themes within the film. These themes are delicately interwoven into the narrative, adding depth to the characters and their emotional journey.

Viewers should watch When Marnie Was There for its poignant exploration of friendship, self-discovery, and acceptance. The film’s beautiful animation and emotional resonance, coupled with the intricate storytelling, make it a compelling viewing experience. The delicately portrayed themes of love and connection, along with the artistic prowess of Yonebayashi, make this film a captivating and thought-provoking cinematic gem worth exploring.

My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness (2017)

My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness is an animated short film directed by Kabi Nagata, adapted from her autobiographical manga of the same name. Nagata, a Japanese manga artist and writer, gained prominence for her candid and introspective works that explore themes of mental health, sexuality, and personal struggles.

The film delves into the life of the protagonist, an emotionally troubled young woman struggling with self-identity and isolation. Through a compelling narrative, it portrays her experience with her sexuality, including her exploration of lesbianism. The story follows her attempts to find solace and understanding through her interactions with others, particularly her engagement with a female escort.

The film vividly portrays the emotional complexity of grappling with one’s sexual orientation and the societal pressures that often accompany it. It challenges conventional norms and prejudices, offering a raw and unflinching exploration of sexuality, loneliness, and the quest for self-acceptance.

My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness is an insightful and thought-provoking work that sheds light on the intricacies of human emotions and relationships. It captivates the audience with its emotionally charged narrative and beautifully crafted animation, providing a glimpse into the human psyche and the struggles individuals face in a judgmental world.

For those seeking a touching and empathetic portrayal of personal growth and acceptance, My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness is highly recommended. It is a film that delves deep into the human experience, leaving a lasting impression on its viewers and encouraging a greater understanding of diverse perspectives and identities.

Rose of Versailles (1979)

Rose of Versailles is a film directed by Jacques Demy, a renowned French filmmaker known for his visually captivating and emotionally resonant works. Demy gained international acclaim for his unique storytelling style and often incorporated elements of romanticism and fantasy into his films. His career spanned several decades, during which he garnered accolades and a dedicated fan base.

The film is an adaptation of Riyoko Ikeda’s iconic manga series. It is set in the lavish court of Versailles during the tumultuous period leading up to the French Revolution. The story follows Oscar François de Jarjayes, a young noblewoman raised as a man to serve as the personal guard of Marie Antoinette. As Oscar navigates the complexities of her dual identity, the film explores themes of love, loyalty, and the pursuit of justice against a backdrop of political upheaval.

One notable aspect of the film is its portrayal of a romantic relationship between two women, Oscar and her close confidante, Rosalie. This lesbian subplot challenges societal norms and adds depth to the characters and their struggles in the rigid aristocratic society of the time.

Rose of Versailles is a must-watch for anyone seeking a blend of historical drama, romance, and social commentary. Demy’s direction and the captivating performances of the cast breathe life into a story rich with intrigue and historical significance. The film’s exploration of love and identity transcends its period setting, making it a timeless and engaging cinematic experience.