GenreComedy, Crime, Family Music directorCody Hale
WriterKurt Hale, John E. Moyer Release dateJanuary 31, 2003 CastKirby Heyborne, Will Swenson, Britani Bateman, Daryn Tufts, Michael Birkeland Similar moviesRelated Kurt Hale movies
TaglineJust when you thought it was safe to go back into the world...
The R.M. is a 2003 comedy film about the experiences of an LDS returned missionary. "RM" is an LDS initialism for "returned missionary." It was written by Kurt Hale and John E. Moyer and directed by Kurt Hale.
The RM is very LDS-centric and generally meant to appeal to an LDS audience. Many non-LDS viewers may not understand the numerous references and satires of the LDS—and Utah—sub-culture.
Jared Phelps returns home from his mission in Wyoming to find a world very different from the one he left two years ago.
This movie opens with a send-off at the airport full of family and friends of Elder Phelps. He serves a two-year mission in the Wyoming, Evanston South Mission. The opening credits are shown by using instant photographs. They also show Elder Phelps going from a greenie (new missionary), to district leader, to zone leader and finally to an assistant to the mission president.
Upon returning home, things don't go so well. His parents thought that he was coming home the following month, so no one is there to meet him at the airport. He didn't receive the letter that his family had moved, so he is surprised by the greeting of the new homeowner in the form of a karate kick while he is in the shower. (He later refers to this as being, "Kung-fued by a naked ninja" ) His bed is now occupied by a foreign exchange student from Tonga. When he is reunited with his parents, he discovers his mother is pregnant. Jared's girlfriend, who promised to wait for him to return, is getting married in two weeks. The jewelry store where he bought the ring won't take it back. And his former employer who promised to give him a job upon his return has sold the business and started an Internet enterprise and the only job opening is to mine diamonds in South Africa.
Things get worse from there. He is rejected from BYU. He quickly goes through a series of jobs, and even considers selling knives. He develops a romantic relationship with Kelly, the daughter of H. Ronald Powers, a general authority that, to his embarrassment, he is unfamiliar with (despite the fact that he gave a "great talk" last October in general conference, whom everyone seems to refer to). On a date with Kelly, Jared's mother goes into labor and has a boy. He also gets boils, and eventually gets arrested due to the actions of a friend. Because of the arrest, he is fired from his job and released from his church calling as elders quorum president. He has to seriously consider whether to lie and keep him and his friend out of jail, or to tell the truth and send himself and/or his friend to jail. In the end, he decides to tell the truth, and is ultimately cleared of all charges, but his friend must face some time in jail.
Later, Jared gives a talk at church about how his mission blessed his life in ways he didn't expect. He decides to take night classes and reapply for BYU in the fall. After some time dating Kelly, the two are seen in a jewelry shop to exchange Jared's old ring for a new one, as they are now engaged.