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Glen Or Glenda
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He loved women so much, he dared to dress like one! Ed Wood strikes again. The true story of a man whose lust for women drove him to be as close to a woman as he could by trying to become one. The first film based on the strange tastes of legendary filmmaker Ed Wood, Jr., and a sordid plea for acceptance in the world of bondage and the sexually confused, decades before "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" and TV's "Ellen." "Glen or Glenda?" stars famous horror icon Bela Lugosi as the "puppet master" and Ed himself in the role of Glen/Glenda. It also marks the screen debut of Wood's main squeeze at the time, Dolores Fuller, who went on to become one of Elvis's star songwriters. An important film document about the early career of a man years ahead of his time. Wildly entertaining!
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Top Customer Reviews
But give credit to Ed on this. This was a genuine attempt at trying to be risque and his heart was really in this and you can tell that - it just didn't translate as well as it could have. His real life fiance Dolores is in this and well.....she's not exactly a great actress. But in some ways the script is just embarassingly naive on Ed's part that in some ways you just can't really believe in it at all no matter how much heart was put into this.
Another thing you'll notice is the dubbing and it is pretty poor. There's a clear 1 and a half second delay on everyone's speech which can be amusing. In fact some people will be in hysterics and just take the piss out of it
But god bless Ed - he tried, honestly he tried
The film follows (occasionally) a man named Glen (Wood himself) who likes to wear women's clothing. He is engaged to a girl named Barbara (Dolores Fuller, Wood's girlfriend), but is distraught over whether to reveal his secret to her.
Wood's attempt at "stark realism" is destroyed immediately as soon as we see Bela Lugosi in a chair spouting incoherent nonsense ("Pull de string!", "Beware of the big green dragon that sits on your doorstep. He eats little boys, puppy-dog tails and big fat snails".)
Half the film consists of random stock footage that has no relevance to the material whatsoever. No to mention the absurd dream sequence that, I think, is supposed to represent Glen's confused state of mind, but it really makes no sense at all. It features half-clothed women dancing around for no reason, a torture scene (!!) and even an appearance by the devil (!!!).Read more ›
That is precisely why "Glen or Glenda" is a priceless gem. Ed Wood poured his heart and soul into what he considered a hard hitting drama to enlighten the masses about cross dressing men. A cross dresser himself, Wood even wore women's underwear under his uniform while in the military. He felt this movie would educate, inform, and bring a better understanding about cross dressing. He actually thought it was a great movie.
Of course what he made was a wildly incoherent mess, full of unrelated scenes and crazy dialog. The Bela Lagosi character, who is playing God, rambles about "Pulling skrings" while buffalos stampede across the screen. There are dream sequences where scantily clad women slink about while Wood stands offstage and looks "Horrified". It simply cannot be described and has nothing to do with the plot. In fact, nothing in the movie has anything to do with the plot. That in itself is a remarkable achievement.
"Glen or Glenda" is a high water mark in bad movies. Along with "Robot Monster" and his own "Plan 9 from Outer Space", it has stood the test of time to become an icon. Watch it and be amazed.
Most recent customer reviews
Well for those of you who are tired of quality films with rich storylines, try this on for size. Glen or Glenda is an autobiographical documentory based on, starring, and directed... Read morePublished on June 21 2004 by Johny Bottom
Yeah, well, maybe not! Still one of the most entertaining films i've ever seen! I get way more laughs out of Ed Wood films than most of the so called "comedies" that... Read morePublished on March 24 2004 by J. Botha
"What would he have given us next?" "Would he have been among the great American auteurs?" These are the questions we'd be asking ourselves if E.D. Wood Jr. Read morePublished on Feb. 27 2004
This movie is bad even by Ed Wood standards! It somewhat borders the line of "so bad it's good" like Plan 9/Grave Robbers from Outer Space and Jail Bait and just so bad it's BAD! Read morePublished on Jan. 24 2004 by Andre M.
The Rhino video of Glen or Glenda is quite a bit superior to this somewhat seedy DVD transfer. The periodic jumps are remarkably annoying, and the sound quality is no picnic... Read morePublished on Jan. 12 2003 by ReadListenWatch
This movie's plot is pretty hard to follow, but the concept is so out there, and the images / film segments used to support it can only be described as bizarre, bordering on... Read morePublished on Oct. 29 2002 by Jeremiah J. Timmins
The essential drag queen film! Ed really did it with this celluloid eyesore. It screams to be made into a musical!Published on Oct. 28 2002 by Luis M. Blasini
Glen or Glenda is, of course, Edward D. Wood Jr.'s autobiographical exploitation anti-masterpiece. If you've already seen it and you're reading this, you're no doubt a fan. Read morePublished on Oct. 10 2001 by Surfink