Go Fish (film)

Go Fish is a 1994 American lesbian-themed independent drama film written by Guinevere Turner and Rose Troche and directed by Rose Troche.[1] The film was a groundbreaking, hip, low-budget comedy that celebrated lesbian culture on all levels, and launched the career of director Troche and Turner.[2] It premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 1994, and was the first film to be sold to a distributor, Samuel Goldwyn, during that event for $450,000.[3] The film was released during gay pride month in June 1994 and eventually grossed $2.4 million. Go Fish proved the marketability of lesbian issues for the film industry.[3]

Go Fish
Film poster
Directed byRose Troche
Produced byRose Troche
Guinevere Turner
Written byRose Troche
Guinevere Turner
StarringGuinevere Turner
V.S. Brodie
Music byScott Aldrich
Brendan Dolan
Jennifer Sharpe
CinematographyAnn T. Rossetti
Edited byRose Troche
Distributed bySamuel Goldwyn Company
Release date
June 10, 1994
Running time
84 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$15,000 (estimated)
Box office$2,408,311 (US sub-total)


Max is a young lesbian college student in Chicago who has gone ten months without having sex. She and her roommate and college professor Kia are in a coffee shop when they run into Ely, a hippieish woman with long braided hair, whom Max initially dismisses. Max and Ely do end up going to a film together. After the film they return to Ely's place and, after some flirtatious conversation, they kiss. Suddenly a call comes in from Ely's (unseen on-screen) partner Kate, with whom Ely has been in a long-distance relationship for more than two years, which puts a bit of a damper on things.

Ely decides to cut off all her hair, ending up with a very short butch style. She runs into Max in a bookstore and Max almost does not recognize her.

Kia's girlfriend Evy returns home. Her ex-boyfriend Junior is there. Evy's mother confronts her, saying that Junior told her that he had spotted Evy at a gay bar. Evy's mother kicks her out and Evy flees to Kia's place and Max invites her to live with them.

Ely and her roommate Daria throw a dinner party and, after a spirited game of I Never, Max and Ely reconnect. They make plans to go out again and then begin kissing. They have several phone conversations, in the course of which Ely reveals that she's "sort of broken up" with Kate. They get together for a second date but they never make it out of the apartment. Max ends up trimming Ely's fingernails. This turns into foreplay and they have sex. Intercut with the closing credits are shots and short scenes of Max and Ely's burgeoning relationship.


  • Guinevere Turner as Camille 'Max' West
  • V.S. Brodie as Ely
  • T. Wendy McMillan as Kia
  • Anastasia Sharp as Daria
  • Migdalia Melendez as Evy
  • Scout as Hairdresser
  • Dave Troche as Junior


Go Fish has an 81% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes.[4] Variety summarized it as "a fresh, hip comedy about contemporary lifestyles within the lesbian community. Theatrical prospects are excellent for an all-female picture that is sharply observed, visually audacious and full of surprising charms."[5] The Rolling Stone commented that, "Troche brings an engagingly light touch to material that ranges from negotiating girl bars to maintaining friendships."[6]

Indiewire ranked it in 5th place on its list of the 15 Greatest Lesbian Movies of All Time.[7]

Awards and nominations

See also


  1. Maslin, Janet (June 10, 1994). "Go Fish (1994) Review/Film; Girl Meets Girl, Laughter Included".
  2. "Go Fish". www.siff.net. Retrieved 2018-01-21.
  3. "Lesbian Film `Fish' Reaches Mainstream". tribunedigital-mcall. Retrieved 2018-01-21.
  4. "Go Fish (1995)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved April 18, 2018.
  5. Levy, Emanuel (1994-01-25). "Go Fish". Variety. Retrieved 2018-01-21.
  6. "Go Fish". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2018-01-21.
  7. Dry, Jude (2017-05-08). "The 15 Greatest Lesbian Movies of All Time, Ranked". IndieWire. Retrieved 2018-01-28.
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