Where would we be without the oddball intensity of Crispin Hellion Glover? We wouldn't have the elegant, menacing Thin Man from the "Charlie's Angels" films. Or sweetly nerdy George McFly. Let's celebrate his most memorable screen characters.
'The Doors' (1991)
In a cameo as reclusive art icon Andy Warhol, Glover is at his most mellow in Oliver Stone's biopic. He comes off as a pop-art version of gee-whiz George McFly as tells Jim Morrison (Val Kilmer), “Wow. We really like your music.”
'Hot Tub Time Machine' (2010)
The intense part of this time-traveling comedy is watching in suspense to see when multi-tasking ski lodge employee Phil Wedmaier will lose his arm! Surely while chainsaw-carving an ice sculpture.
'Alice in Wonderland' (2010)
With Johnny Depp maxing out the eccentricity quotient as the Mad Hatter, that leaves Glover as the rather dashing, if still evil, Knave of Hearts. Just check out the YouTube fan videos dedicated to shipping him with Alice (Mia Wasikowska).
'Epic Movie' (2007)
Who do you get to send up Johnny Depp's Willy Wonka? Glover. (They first worked together on "What's Eating Gilbert Grape," btw.) No hard feelings on Tim Burton's part, who later hired Glover for "Alice in Wonderland."
'American Gods' (2017-2019)
Who else but Glover could have delivered this opening dialogue to main character Shadow Moon (Ricky Whittle): “I know your blood type and your recurring nightmare. B-positive and an orchard of bones.” As Mr. World, the New God of globalization and the leader of the New Gods, Glover is dapper, sinister and kind of an amalgamation of every role he's ever played.
'River's Edge' (1987)
In this dark drama based on a true story, when a teenager kills his girlfriend, his friends all come to view the body. And neglect to tell the police. Glover plays Layne, who makes it his solemn duty to keep the cover-up going. As the story goes, Glover's performance was so hyperactive, the distributors insisted they add a line to the script about his character being a speed freak.
'Charlie's Angels' (2000)
Everything the mute Thin Man does is sinister, whether it's smoking a cigarette or wielding a sword. Until the sequel, when we learn that the hair-grabbing fetishist has a thing for Dylan (Drew Barrymore). And it's... reciprocated! All too briefly.
Reviews of this remake of the 1971 cult film weren't kind, but most critics agreed: Glover was born to play the twitchy lead character, who trains rats to do his evil bidding.
'Back to the Future' (1985)
When Marty McFly goes back in time, getting his teenage mom to fall for dweeby George McFly is a tall order. How many shy nerds can deliver a line like "You're my density" and make it sound both overwhelmingly sweet and bizarrely creepy? Lucky for Marty, his existence is assured when George proves to be as romantic as he is awkward. (The franchise dropped Glover from future installments, alas. But this one outing proved to be timeless.)
'Rubin and Ed' (1991)
If you think Nicolas Cage and Johnny Depp were the oddest indie actors working in the '90s, you must not have seen a bewigged, platform-shoed Glover high-kicking in this buddy comedy. It's peak Glover: He stars as an eccentric young man whose mother won't return his stereo unless he makes some friends. His road trip buddy? A guy looking for a place to bury his frozen cat.
'Late Night with David Letterman' (1987)
Arguably, the oddest character Glover ever played is... himself. In this infamous Letterman appearance (that predates “Rubin and Ed”), the incredibly nervous actor is sensitive to the audience laughing at his wig and his platform shoes. He reads tabloid stories about his eccentricities, then then challenges Letterman to an arm wrestling contest. Then he nearly takes out the late night host with a high kick.