Rubin and Ed is a 1991 Independent film starring Crispin Glover and Howard Hesseman, directed by Trent Harris. An offbeat and often-trippy comedy, it tells the story of self-imposed hermit Rubin Farr (Glover) and middle-aged pyramid scheme recruiter Ed Tuttle (Hesseman). Ed is desperate to find someone that he can drag to his group's upcoming seminar. Meanwhile, Rubin's mother is nagging him to make a friend and bring said friend over to dinner. While on their respecive missions, the two men meet. Hilarity Ensues. Weirdness Ensues too. The plot winds up going in an unexpected direction, and our heroes spend most of the movie lost in an arid Utah desert.
It's a character study, a road comedy, and (ultimately) a story about two lost souls trying to make their way in the world.
Fun Fact: Although the movie came out in 1991, Crispin Glover created the Rubin character years before. In his Andy Kaufman-esque stunt on David Letterman's show in 1987, he appeared in-character as Rubin (well, we think it was a stunt; it's just as possible that Glover is just plain weird). He also mentions "Mr. Farr" in his 1989 song "Clowny Clown Clown" and makes a brief appearance in costume as Rubin in the video thereof.
This Film contains examples of:
- Audience Surrogate: Ed
- Cloud Cuckoo Lander: Rubin
- A Date with Rosie Palms: Rubin's addiction to squeezing his cat's squeaky toy while listening to Mahler is presented as a metaphor for this, egged on by his fantasies of a bikini-clad girl on a poster in his room.
- Dark and Troubled Past
- Deadpan Snarker: Ed
- Dream Sequence
- Fat and Skinny: Ed and Rubin, respectively.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners
- Hidden Depths:
- Rubin is initially portrayed as a withdrawn weirdo who solely existed to make the audience laugh and then we learn about what happened to his cat...
- Ed is an opportunist, sure, but he's also very lonely and still partially in love with his ex-wife.
- Humiliation Conga: Ed's boss.
- Intergenerational Friendship
- Ed's Ex
- Ed's boss
- Manchild: Rubin, full stop.
- Name and Name
- Odd Couple
- The Power of Friendship
- Rummage Sale Reject: Rubin Farr's usual mode of dress includes horn-rimmed glasses, an ugly button-down polo shirt, bell-bottomed pants with pinstripes, and high-heeled platform shoes. And, optionally, a leather jacket for outings in the desert. He wears these clothes because he "likes them."
- Schoolyard Bully All Grown Up
- Take That!: The Power of Positive Real Estate. Really, it kills two birds with one stone.
- You Are Not Alone