7.9/11
123,145
358 user 85 critic

This Is Spinal Tap (1984)

R | | Comedy, Music | 2 March 1984 (USA)
Trailer
1:36 | Trailer
Spinal Tap, one of England's loudest bands, is chronicled by film director Marty DiBergi on what proves to be a fateful tour.

Director:

Rob Reiner
Reviews
Popularity
2,215 ( 598)
2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

An aspiring director and the marginally talented amateur cast of a hokey small-town Missouri musical production go overboard when they learn that someone from Broadway will be in attendance.

Director: Christopher Guest
Stars: Christopher Guest, Fred Willard, Catherine O'Hara
A Mighty Wind (2003)
Comedy | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Mockumentary captures the reunion of 1960s folk trio the Folksmen as they prepare for a show at The Town Hall to memorialize a recently deceased concert promoter.

Director: Christopher Guest
Stars: Christopher Guest, Eugene Levy, Michael McKean
Best in Show (2000)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A colorful array of characters compete at a national dog show.

Director: Christopher Guest
Stars: Fred Willard, Eugene Levy, Catherine O'Hara
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

The band that was profiled in This Is Spinal Tap (1984) makes another final reunion. After all, it's rock'n'roll.

Director: Rob Reiner
Stars: Christopher Guest, Michael McKean, Rob Reiner
Airplane! (1980)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A man afraid to fly must ensure that a plane lands safely after the pilots become sick.

Directors: Jim Abrahams, David Zucker, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Robert Hays, Julie Hagerty, Leslie Nielsen
Comedy | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

In order to ruin a western town, a corrupt politician appoints a black Sheriff, who promptly becomes his most formidable adversary.

Director: Mel Brooks
Stars: Cleavon Little, Gene Wilder, Slim Pickens
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Selection of clips from top secret training films made between the 1950s and 1970s for the Hungarian secret police of communist János Kádár era that teach the agents how to surveil and investigate possible traitors and recruit informants.

Director: Gábor Zsigmond Papp
Stars: János Kulka, Zoltán Rátóti, Ferenc Elek
Adventure | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Jake Blues, just released from prison, puts together his old band to save the Catholic home where he and his brother Elwood were raised.

Director: John Landis
Stars: John Belushi, Dan Aykroyd, Cab Calloway
Clerks (1994)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A day in the lives of two convenience clerks named Dante and Randal as they annoy customers, discuss movies, and play hockey on the store roof.

Director: Kevin Smith
Stars: Brian O'Halloran, Jeff Anderson, Marilyn Ghigliotti
Documentary | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
Director: Gyula Gazdag
Balkan Champion (TV Movie 2006)
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
Director: Ildiko Rika Kincses
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

An American grandson of the infamous scientist, struggling to prove that his grandfather was not as insane as people believe, is invited to Transylvania, where he discovers the process that reanimates a dead body.

Director: Mel Brooks
Stars: Gene Wilder, Madeline Kahn, Marty Feldman
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Rob Reiner ... Marty DiBergi
Kimberly Stringer Kimberly Stringer ... Heavy Metal Fan
Chazz Dominguez Chazz Dominguez ... Heavy Metal Fan
Shari Hall Shari Hall ... Heavy Metal Fan
R.J. Parnell R.J. Parnell ... Mick Shrimpton
David Kaff David Kaff ... Viv Savage
Tony Hendra ... Ian Faith
Michael McKean ... David St. Hubbins
Christopher Guest ... Nigel Tufnel
Harry Shearer ... Derek Smalls
Bruno Kirby ... Tommy Pischedda
Jean Cromie Jean Cromie ... Ethereal Fan
Patrick Maher Patrick Maher ... New York M.C.
Ed Begley Jr. ... John 'Stumpy' Pepys
Danny Kortchmar ... Ronnie Pudding
Edit

Storyline

In 1982, the legendary English heavy metal band Spinal Tap attempt an American comeback tour accompanied by a fan who is also a film-maker. The resulting documentary, interspersed with powerful performances of Tap's pivotal music and profound lyrics, candidly follows a rock group heading towards crisis, culminating in the infamous affair of the eighteen-inch-high Stonehenge stage prop. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The original rockumentary created by Christopher Guest, Michael McKean, Rob Reiner, Harry Shearer See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Music

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

MGM

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

2 March 1984 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

This is Spinal Tap®: A Rockumentary by Martin Di Bergi See more »

Filming Locations:

California, USA See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$2,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$30,835, 4 March 1984

Gross USA:

$4,736,202

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$4,736,202
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.70 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Ranked #1 on Entertainment Weekly's "Top 50 Cult Films of All-Time" See more »

Goofs

At the end, Russ Kunkel is credited as Eric "Stumpy Joe" Childs, the drummer who choked to death on vomit. However, Kunkel plays in the "Jamboreebop" video. Just after that, the band calls him "Peter 'James' Bond". It's not shown in the film, but Peter "James" Bond was the drummer who exploded on stage. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Marty DiBergi: Hello; my name is Marty DiBergi. I'm a filmmaker. I make a lot of commercials. That little dog that chases the covered wagon underneath the sink? That was mine. In 1966, I went down to Greenwich Village, New York City to a rock club called Electric Banana. Don't look for it; it's not there anymore. But that night, I heard a band that for me redefined the word "rock and roll". I remember being knocked out by their... their exuberance, their raw power - and their punctuality. That ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

There are no opening credits after the title is shown. See more »

Alternate Versions

The Criterion DVD includes the preliminary version of the film. It's a twenty-minute short that cost $50,000 and is essentially a condensed version of the full movie. Rob Reiner and the band made it in lieu of writing a script to show to studios. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Rock Star (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

All The Way Home
Written by Michael McKean and Christopher Guest
Performed by Michael McKean and Christopher Guest
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Cult classic
14 October 2004 | by rbverhoefSee all my reviews

By many seen as the favorite cult classic (together with 'The Rocky Horror Picture Show') 'This is Spinal Tap' is truly a comedy masterpiece. The rockumentary about fake band Spinal Tap seems so honest and serious that the slightest joke gets a huge laugh. We follow the band together with a documentary filmmaker, played by director Rob Reiner, on a tour that must make sure they will have a comeback. We see some of their shows where things go wrong, we see how they argue about the cover of their album, and we see how a girlfriend almost destroys the band.

The movie handles all these events as serious as possible, presenting itself as a real documentary about a real band. The fact that the band members are not too bright makes it funny. Especially the scene where the lead singer talks about an amplifier that goes to eleven instead of ten and therefore produces louder sounds is hilarious. The scene where the band plays on a Stonehenge stage is a classic, very memorable.

Writer Christopher Guest recently wrote and starred in 'Best in Show' (2000) and 'A Mighty Wind' (2003), two hilarious and terrific fake documentaries, the so-called mockumentaries, but 'This is Spinal Tap' stays the classic example. He and his co-writers, including director Reiner, have created the ultimate cult classic.


48 of 63 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 358 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed