4.2/10
7,366
130 user 46 critic

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)
Reviews

Watch Now

With Prime Video

ON DISC
ALL

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.2/10 X  

A mad doctor attempts to create atomic supermen.

Director: Edward D. Wood Jr.
Stars: Bela Lugosi, Tor Johnson, Tony McCoy
Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4/10 X  

Evil aliens attack Earth and set their terrible "Plan 9" in action. As the aliens resurrect the dead of the Earth to destroy the living, our lives are in danger.

Director: Edward D. Wood Jr.
Stars: Gregory Walcott, Tom Keene, Mona McKinnon
Jail Bait (1954)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.3/10 X  

Vic Brady draws young Don Gregor into a life of crime. He then blackmails Gregor's plastic surgeon father into fixing up his face so he can evade the cops.

Director: Edward D. Wood Jr.
Stars: Lyle Talbot, Dolores Fuller, Herbert Rawlinson
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.6/10 X  

Phony spiritualist raises the dead.

Director: Edward D. Wood Jr.
Stars: Kenne Duncan, Duke Moore, Tor Johnson
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 2.4/10 X  

A flunky for a porno movie ring starts murdering the smut films' lead actresses.

Director: Edward D. Wood Jr.
Stars: Kenne Duncan, Duke Moore, Jean Fontaine
Ed Wood (1994)
Biography | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Ambitious but troubled movie director Edward D. Wood Jr. tries his best to fulfill his dreams, despite his lack of talent.

Director: Tim Burton
Stars: Johnny Depp, Martin Landau, Sarah Jessica Parker
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.4/10 X  

A couple hire a detective to locate their missing daughter. He finds her in a "house of ill-repute."

Director: Edward D. Wood Jr.
Stars: L.G. Allard, Nona Carver, Linda Colpin
Nympho Cycler (1971)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5/10 X  

A beautiful, love starved woman named Misty, leaves an abusive relationship with an odd man. She joins a pack of bikers and many sexual escapades and intense happenings occur on her adventure into a new freedom.

Director: Edward D. Wood Jr.
Stars: Casey Larrain, Edward D. Wood Jr., Stud Stetson
The Sun Was Setting (TV Short 1951)
Short | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A woman is dying in her apartment. Two friends visit her and she tells them she wants to go to Chinatown. They convince her not to go, and then leave themselves. Unable to stand her ... See full summary »

Director: Edward D. Wood Jr.
Stars: Angela Stevens, Tom Keene, Phyllis Coates
The Black Cat (1934)
Adventure | Crime | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

American honeymooners in Hungary become trapped in the home of a Satan-worshiping priest when the bride is taken there for medical help following a road accident.

Director: Edgar G. Ulmer
Stars: Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, David Manners
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.8/10 X  

Cautionary tale features a fictionalized take on the use of marijuana. A trio of drug dealers lead innocent teenagers to become addicted to "reefer" cigarettes by holding wild parties with jazz music.

Director: Louis J. Gasnier
Stars: Dorothy Short, Kenneth Craig, Lillian Miles
Final Curtain (1957)
Short | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  

After a horror play's final performance, The Vampire roams the theater.

Director: Edward D. Wood Jr.
Stars: Duke Moore, Dudley Manlove, Jeannie Stevens
Edit

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)
Charles Crafts Charles Crafts ... Johnny
Conrad Brooks ... Banker / Reporter / Pickup Artist / Bearded Drag (as Connie Brooks)
Edit

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:

The strange case of a "man" who changed his SEX! See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

April 1953 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Glen or Glenda? See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

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

Company Credits

Production Co:

Screen Classics (II) See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

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

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

In March 1981, Paramount placed a full-page page ad in the New York Times announcing the reissue of Glen or Glenda (1953). It was heralded as a lost trail-blazing masterpiece in the tradition of Citizen Kane (1941), Freaks (1932), The Godfather (1972) and Napoleon (1927). A big New York premiere was scheduled for the reissue, but the date, April 1st, made film buffs suspect that the whole thing was an April Fool's Day joke. Paramount abruptly canceled the premiere the night before, citing the attempted assassination of then-president Ronald Reagan on March 30th. The film was quietly put into limited re-release the next month, and started appearing in TV "bad movie" film festivals soon after. See more »

Goofs

The text accompanying the close-up of a newspaper story headlined "Man Nabbed Dressed As Girl" is a hodge-podge of unrelated paragraphs lifted from stories about tax reform, a prison injury, and faith healing. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Alton: Would you be surprised to know that this rough, tough individual is wearing pink satin undies under his rough exterior clothing? He is. Then there is your friend the milkman who... who knows how to find comfort at home.
See more »

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

The versions titled "I Led Two Lives", "I Changed My Sex", and "He or She?" and some VHS releases, include 6 minutes additional footage ordered by the Producer, and directed by W. Merle Connell, that had been considered too daring at the time of the initial production. See more »


Soundtracks

Czardas
(uncredited)
Music by Vittorio Monti
[plays during the bondage portion of the dream sequence]
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

Believe the hype! Everything you've heard about this one is true! Fifty years on it's STILL one of the weirdest movies ever made.
1 June 2003 | by InfofreakSee all my reviews

Ever since Tim Burton's wonderful 'Ed Wood' raised Ed Wood Jr's profile and made his seriously bent movies movies better known than they have ever been, some cult movie fans have gotten their noses out of joint. Wood's reputation as the worst director ever pushes some buffs buttons as it marginalizes already marginalized film makers like Ray Dennis Steckler, Ted V. Mikels, Herschell Gordon Lewis, Al Adamson and other "so bad it's good" directors. I leave more knowledgeable fans than me to argue over who REALLY is the worst, but there's no denying that Wood's movies are quite unlike anything made before or since. 'Glen Or Glenda' is his best movie, or if the term "best" misleads, his Ed Woodest. I've lost track of how many times I've seen it over the years but it never loses its power to amuse and astound. Every single time I watch it I am flabbergasted! It literally has to be seen to be believed. Wood plays the title character, a man wrestling with his transvestitism. His girlfriend is played by Dolores Fuller, the cop by Lyle Talbot, the psychiatrist by Timothy Farrell, all three familiar faces from other Wood classics like 'Plan Nine From Outer Space' and 'Jail Bait'. But the real reason to watch this is the utterly bizarre performance from horror legend Bela Lugosi, credited on the version I watched as "scientist", and on the IMDb as "The Spirit", who may or may not be God. His rantings of "Pull the strings! Pull the strings!" and nonsensical stuff about "Green dragons" and "puppy dog tails" will stay in your head for YEARS, if not for the rest of your life! Wood intercuts this with nutty stock footage like buffalo stampedes, and one of the most wacked out nightmare sequences ever seen, which includes lots of chubby gals in states of undress, some S and M, and and an appearance by Satan. Believe the hype - everything you've heard about this one is true! Fifty years on it's STILL one of the weirdest movies ever made. If you haven't seen 'Glen Or Glenda' you just don't know what you're missing!


30 of 36 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 130 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed