There’s a lot to be said about #OscarsSoWhite this year, and I don’t want to repeat what’s already been eloquently written.

Here’s what I want to contribute: a list of movies from 2015 that were diverse and progressive.

Now, this is just my personal list of movies I saw. There are still several I haven’t gotten to yet, like Sicario or Creed, which has received praise for star Michael B. Jordan and director Ryan Coogler. Of course, given the world we live in, Creed‘s only Oscar chance is for perpetual Razzie awardee Sylvester Stallone.

If you make your own list, you might choose movies I had reservations about: The Danish Girl (review), about Lili Elbe, one of the first documented trans women to undergo sex reassignment surgery; or The Hateful Eight, with its gleeful disregard for safe, P.C. racial and gender politics. (More on that one another day!)

These movies celebrated diversity in wonderful and different ways:

Great roles for black actors and actresses.
Mixing up gender in genre movies.
LGBT narratives told from the gay characters’ views, not someone else’s.
A movie with leading roles for older actors, about older people.
The highest-profile movie starring two trans women made in this country.


45 Years (review)
Beasts of No Nation* (review)
Carol (review)
Ex Machina**
Infinitely Polar Bear
Mad Max: Fury Road
Star Wars: The Force Awakens
What Happened, Miss Simone?*


All of these movies are worth your time. (You can watch some now on Netflix* and Amazon Prime**.)

And I hope next year’s list is longer.


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