Glen or Glenda? (acquired through trading) [Category: Sleaze & Outsider]

This exploitation "documentary" about transvestitism, made by the legendary Edward D. Wood, Jr., is one of the weirdest films ever. Producer George Weiss was just trying to cash in on the Christine Jorgensen brouhaha, but Wood, being a transvestite himself, made an impassioned plea for understanding, marred or enhanced, depending upon your point of view, by Wood's trademark loony dialogue. And in this case, the dialogue is only the beginning of the strangeness. There's Bela Lugosi as a bizarre "puppetmaster" character ("Pull the strings!" he shouts). There's Wood himself playing the title character in and out of drag. There's the bizarre use of stock footage (in this movie, "buffalo shot" means a herd of stampeding buffalo). There's Delores Fuller's Great Moment in Bad Acting as she passionately emotes after her fiancee Glen tells her about his little hobby. And all of that is topped by an absolutely incredible dream sequence––again, experimental filmmakers can only aspire to make something this weird. It all adds up to one heckuva movie. And despite all the laughs, you gotta admire Wood for the guts it took him to make such a personal film with such a nonconformist message, and during the 50s, no less. Highly recommended.

Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: *****. Weirdness: *****+. Historical Interest: *****. Overall Rating: *****.

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