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This Is Spinal Tap (1984)

R  |   |  Comedy, Music  |  2 March 1984 (USA)
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Ratings: 8.0/11 from 100,971 users   Metascore: 85/100
Reviews: 322 user | 122 critic | 13 from Metacritic.com

Spinal Tap, one of England's loudest bands, is chronicled by film director Marty DeBergi on what proves to be a fateful tour.


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3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Kimberly Stringer ...
Heavy Metal Fan
Chazz Dominguez ...
Heavy Metal Fan
Shari Hall ...
Heavy Metal Fan
R.J. Parnell ...
David Kaff ...
Jean Cromie ...
Ethereal Fan
Patrick Maher ...
New York M.C.


In 1982 legendary British 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 <jwp@aber.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Does for rock and roll what "The Sound of Music" did for hills


Comedy | Music


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

2 March 1984 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Rock 'n' Roll Nightmare  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$2,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$55,854 (USA) (8 September 2000)


$4,671,831 (USA) (6 October 2000)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.70 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Harry Shearer, Rob Reiner, Christopher Guest, and Michael McKean were given $10,000 to write a script. They made a 20-minute version of the film to better demonstrate the improvisation they had in mind. Several scenes from the demo are in the final movie. See more »


During the rehearsal when the album "Smell the Glove" first arrives, the horns of the skull stage prop in the background are alternately missing and attached. See more »


[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

Rob Reiner interviews all the members of the band. See more »


Featured in The 79th Annual Academy Awards (2007) See more »


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 (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Hello Cleaveland! Still one of the funniest films ever and even better on DVD
28 May 2001 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Spinal Tap seemed funny the first time I saw it, but I never got all the jokes. Now though, I saw it through and through and I loved it even more (especially on DVD where the extras are hilarious). Nearly every gag in the movie is dead pan funny, from the cover of "Smell the Glove" (just the description will make you laugh) to all the others including the three piece guitar solo, the animal costumes ("this is what you'll look like as a crab" is the funniest line of the 80's next to "Frank, they're not here for you, Weird Al is on the plane" in Naked Gun), the backstage food, (of course) the amp that goes to 11 and the 18 inch stonehenge. Satire at one of it's best, and it's excellent. Cameos include Bruno Kirby, Billy Crystal, Dana Carvey, Paul Schaffer and Anjelica Houston. Other best line: you can not do free flow jazz odyssey in front of a festival crowd! A+

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