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Glen or Glenda (1953)

PG | | Drama | April 1953 (USA)
A psychiatrist tells two stories: one of a transvestite (Glen or Glenda), the other of a pseudohermaphrodite (Alan or Anne).

Director:

Edward D. Wood Jr.

Writer:

Edward D. Wood Jr. (story and written by)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Bela Lugosi ... Scientist
Lyle Talbot ... Inspector Warren
Timothy Farrell Timothy Farrell ... Dr. Alton / Narrator
Dolores Fuller ... Barbara
'Tommy' Haynes 'Tommy' Haynes ... Alan / Anne
Edward D. Wood Jr. ... Glen / Glenda (as Daniel Davis)
Charlie Crafts Charlie Crafts ... Johnny (as Charles Crafts)
Conrad Brooks ... Banker / Reporter / Pickup Artist / Bearded Drag (as Connie Brooks)
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Storyline

"Glen or Glenda" tells two stories. One is about Glen, who secretly dresses as a woman but is afraid to tell his fiancée, Barbara. The other is about Alan, a pseudohermaphrodite who undergoes a painful operation to become a woman. Both stories are told by Dr. Alton, who also delivers an earnest lecture on tolerance and understanding. There is a second narrator, called the Scientist, whose commentary on the action contains more philosophical pronouncements than facts. The movie also has flashbacks-within-flashbacks and a strange dream sequence. We meet Insp. Warren, whose investigation of a transvestite's suicide leads him to learn more about men in women's clothes; Johnny, whose wife left him when she discovered what he wears when she's away; Barbara, oblivious to Glen's desire to wear her angora sweater; Satan, who invades Glen's nightmare; and others. Meanwhile, the Scientist will only offer cryptic advice. "Beware!" he warns. "Beware of the big, green dragon that sits on your ... Written by J. Spurlin

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

See Doctors Transform Man to Woman! See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

April 1953 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Glen or Glenda? See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$20,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Screen Classics (II) See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (1982 re-issue) | (DVD) | (cut) | (DVD)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film is listed among the Top Ten Best Bad Films ever made in "The Official Razzie Movie Guide." See more »

Goofs

Several costumes and props (including an angora hat and a calendar from a curio shop) show up repeatedly in entirely different settings. See more »

Quotes

Narrator: Female has the fluff and the finery, as specified by those who design and sell. Little Miss Female, you should feel quite proud of the situation. You of course realise it's predominantly men who design your clothes, your jewelry, your makeup, your hair styling, your perfume. But life, even thought it's changes are slow, moves on.
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Crazy Credits

Card at beginning: In the making of this film, which deals with a strange and curious subject, no punches have been pulled-- no easy way out has been taken. Many of the smaller parts are portrayed by persons who actually are, in real life, the character they portray on the screen. This is a picture of stark realism-- taking no sides -- but giving you the facts -- ALL the facts -- as they are today... YOU ARE SOCIETY -- JUDGE YE NOT... See more »

Alternate Versions

Reissued in 1982 with six minutes of additional footage. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Best of the Worst: Ninja Movies (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Czardas
(uncredited)
Music by Vittorio Monti
[plays during the bondage portion of the dream sequence]
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

So bad it's... what?
22 February 2003 | by sandrewsmithSee all my reviews

If you haven't seen any of Ed Wood's other movies, this one is a completely bewildering experience. If you have seen any of Ed Wood's movies, this is still completely bewildering. Wood saw newsreels about Christine Jorgenson (the subject of the first sex-change operation), realized that he had a few things in common with Jorgenson, and made this... um... documentary about it. Lugosi plays, as always, a mad scientist, whose storyline barely ties in with the rest of the movie. Wood himself pseudonymously plays Glen, who enjoys dressing up in angora sweaters. Two policemen investigate Glen's apparent suicide, and... well, the plot sort of lost me between Lugosi's bizarre rants, the stock footage of buffalo herds and the elementary-school-filmstrip-quality acting. It really doesn't make any sense, but it is entertaining by virtue of its profound awfulness.


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