While y’all are hunkered down in your apartments for these final moments of chill before spring begins we’ve got some must see films. Whether it’s a romantic comedy or a noir movie, the picks below have some seriously queer interiors. Throwback, modern, and bizarre; this a list of some of The Queer Interior team’s picks for most stand-out spaces on film. Feel free to add to the list–these are among the ones we think really deserve a shout-out.
1. Sunset Blvd (Billy Wilder, 1950) This classic is up there with Mommie Dearest as far as gay boy guilty pleasure movies go. Gloria Swanson plays a delightfully delusional former silent movie star. In the foreground of this romance-meets-suspense masterpiece are the many bigger than life bedrooms, lounges, private theaters, and ballrooms that make up her mansion. Furniture from present day ’50s and the early 1900s make this a real classic. STREAMING
2. Auntie Mame (Morton DaCosta, 1958) staring Rosalind Russell, is on the short list of my favorite movies of all time. It’s got pretty much everything a gay boy could want: a strong female lead, a coming-of-age story, a few amazing drunks, and some outstanding before/after apartment re-dos. Mame revamps her Beekman Place apartment with as much regularity as she colors her hair–from intentionally stuffy studies to ultra-modern mechanics, to borderline racist Eastern inspired design; her space is a reflection of her wacky style and flamboyant ways.
3. Barbarella ( Roger Vadim, 1968) This otherworldly comic book romp is full of eye candy. A fit Jane Fonda camps around wide-eyed while often aimlessly screwing men carved out of marble. The interiors are ’60s and ’70s masterpieces, almost as over the top as the star herself. Feathers, metal, and foam are the most normal of the elements that comprise the theatrical spaces. Every set is good enough for any queen–this trippy throwback is a must see. STREAMING
4. Fried Green Tomatoes (Jon Avnet, 1991) Based on the Fannie Flagg book, F.G.T is as a love letter to the south. A close and closeted relationship between Idgie and Ruth in present day 1920s Alabama are set in regal southern homes and delightfully dingy riverside bars. They open the Whistle Stop Café that could easily be a small café off any G train stop (no, really). The anchoring subplot is that of Evelyn, played by an unapologetic Kathy Bates who straight up steals every scene.
5. The Bird Cage (Mike Nichols, 1996) South Beach! The crazed coastal pastels of this family home are visually delightful. Most every space in this tribute to La Cage aux Folles is playful and painted up. Nathan Lane panics and monologues from beautiful chaise lounges; Robin Williams pep talks next to kidney-shaped in-ground pools, and Hank Azaria steals the show flanked by campy deco archways. And the apartment and drag hall below are something out of Carmen Miranda’s dreams.
6. Beautiful Thing ( Hettie Macdonald, 1996) The honest and bittersweet courtship of two very cute British boys is set almost entirely in a mid-nineties apartment building in a suburb of London. The small town relationship of gossiping neighbors combined with this tender story makes for a sometimes thrilling, sometimes somber narrative. The postered teenage room of Ste (played by Scott Neal) reminds us all of late nights rearranging our CD collection and sticky-tacking glow-in-the-dark stars to our ceilings. The Mamas and The Papas make up the film’s score, injecting positivity where there sometimes isn’t much.
7. American Psycho ( Mary Harron, 2000) Despite the totally crazed sexual and violent nature of this book-turned-movie, we do LOVE the apartment. The streamlined black and white living room is a deadly combination. Christian Bale’s killer Wall St. pad is a combination of totally modern and ’60s pop. The functionality of the space is nearly pornographic. The restaurants, lounges, and hotels featured in the film are also top notch. STREAMING
8. Far From Heaven (Todd Hayes, 2002) is a layered love story set in the 1950s. This sometimes dark and always striking tale of latent homophobia and a time pre-Feminine Mystique is chock-full of plush square couches, modular dimensions, amazing wall-to-wall carpeting and vivid shads of red, purple, and blue. Every indoor space screams vintage Better Homes and Gardens and old Americana.
9. The Dreamers (Bernardo Bertolucci, 2003) Set in hedonistic late 60s Paris two beautiful people fall in love with Michael Pitt. It’s a gorgeously shot film and the sexual undertones play second to the beautiful spaces. The beautiful interiors include The Louvre Museum, a stunning squalidly flat in Paris, and pot filled movie theaters. The film’s soundtrack is an instant mellow party gathering companion.
10. The Incredibles (Brad Bird, 2004) This action-packed animated feature by Pixar is all about modern, minimal, classic furniture. Charles and Ray Eames, Op Art, Danish and European Mid Century furniture join these superheroes on their journey. Debatable gay icon Holly Hunter is a stand out favorite and confirmed gay icon Edith Head is paid homage by pint-sized four-eyes Edna “E” Mode.