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Cruel and Unusual (2006)

Not Rated | | Documentary, Crime | 24 October 2006 (USA)
Five transgender women share their prison experiences. Interviews with attorneys, doctors, and other experts are also included.


Janet Baus (as Janet W. Baus), Dan Hunt | 1 more credit »
2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Ashley Ashley ... Herself - Tucker Unit, Arkansas Department of Corrections
Ophelia DeLonte Ophelia DeLonte ... Herself - Marion Correctional Facility (as Ophelia De'Lonta)
Anna Connelly Anna Connelly ... Herself - Former Prisoner, Florida Department of Corrections
George Brown George Brown ... Himself - Psychiatrist (as Dr. George Brown)
Dean Spade Dean Spade ... Himself - Attorney, Sylvia Rivera Law Project
Yolanda Valentin Yolanda Valentin ... Herself - Inmate, Yardsville Youth Correctional Facility
Dana Turner Dana Turner ... Herself - Attorney, Sylvia Rivera Law Project
Bruce Bistline Bruce Bistline ... Himself - Attorney
Linda Thompson Linda Thompson ... Herself
Lea Cooper Lea Cooper ... Herself - Attorney
Christopher Patella Christopher Patella ... Himself - Attorney
Ralph Froelick Ralph Froelick ... Himself - Sheriff, Union County, NJ (as Sheriff Ralph Froelick)
Dainna Cicotello Dainna Cicotello ... Herself - Transsexual Educator
Victor Glasberg Victor Glasberg ... Himself - Ophelia's Attorney
Peter Vieth Peter Vieth ... Himself - Defense Attorney


Imagine being a woman in a men's prison. For many individuals, this is a grim reality because the U.S. prison system decides where to place inmates based on their genitalia, not their gender identity. This award-winning documentary makes an unflinching examination of transgender women in men's prisons. Ashley, Linda, Anna, Yolanda and Ophelia describe their experiences undergoing inhumane and humiliating treatment including rape, violence, solitary confinement and denial of medial care. One interviewee explains. "A lot of times I wake up, and I look around at my surroundings, and I see all these men. I think, 'What am I doing here?'" The women in Cruel and Unusual don't deny that they must serve their sentences, but their stories raise very important questions about their treatment. Are the human rights of these women and many others across the United States violated? If Gender Identity Disorder is a recognized condition by the American Psychiatric Association, should inmates receive ... Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Imagine being a woman in a men's prison.


Documentary | Crime


Not Rated


Official Sites:

Official site





Release Date:

24 October 2006 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Cruel and Unusual: Transgender Women in Prison See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Reid Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Color (HDCAM)| Black and White
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Diagnostic and Statistical Manual IV (D.S.M. IV) defines Gender Identity Disorder as: "Identification with the opposite sex and the experience of considerable distress because of one's actual sex." See more »

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