Down 611 this week

This Is Spinal Tap (1984)

R  |   |  Comedy, Music  |  2 March 1984 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/11 X  
Ratings: 8.0/11 from 100,968 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.


Watch Trailer
0Check in

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Video

3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

A Mighty Wind (2003)
Comedy | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 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)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

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

Director: Christopher Guest
Stars: Fred Willard, Eugene Levy, Catherine O'Hara
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

An American grandson of the infamous scientist, struggling to prove that he is not as insane as people believe, travels to his family's home country and discovers the process that reanimates a dead body.

Director: Mel Brooks
Stars: Gene Wilder, Madeline Kahn, Marty Feldman
Action | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

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

Director: John Landis
Stars: John Belushi, Dan Aykroyd, Cab Calloway
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 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
Airplane! (1980)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 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
Wayne's World (1992)
Comedy | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Two slacker friends try to promote their public-access cable show.

Director: Penelope Spheeris
Stars: Mike Myers, Dana Carvey, Rob Lowe
Comedy | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

To ruin a western town, a corrupt political boss appoints a black sheriff, who promptly becomes his most formidable adversary.

Director: Mel Brooks
Stars: Cleavon Little, Gene Wilder, Slim Pickens
The Producers (1967)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Producers Max Bialystock and Leo Bloom make money by producing a sure-fire flop.

Director: Mel Brooks
Stars: Zero Mostel, Gene Wilder, Dick Shawn
Brazil (1985)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A bureaucrat in a retro-future world tries to correct an administrative error and himself becomes an enemy of the state.

Director: Terry Gilliam
Stars: Jonathan Pryce, Kim Greist, Robert De Niro
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

When a childless couple of an ex-con and an ex-cop decide to help themselves to one of another family's quintupelets, their lives get more complicated than they anticipated.

Directors: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen
Stars: Nicolas Cage, Holly Hunter, Trey Wilson
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A high school wise guy is determined to have a day off from school, despite what the principal thinks of that.

Director: John Hughes
Stars: Matthew Broderick, Alan Ruck, Mia Sara


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?


In his memoir "Father Joe", Tony Hendra admits that he attempted suicide the night before the first day of filming. He credits the joy he experienced in making the film with bringing him back from his depression. See more »


During the 'Recording Studio Meltdown', David begins playing with a white Stratocaster, switches to a Sunburst Stratocaster, then back to a white Stratocaster in seconds (Special Edition only). 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 »


Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Projected Man (1998) See more »


Jazz Odyssey
Written by Michael McKean and Harry Shearer
Performed by Michael McKean and Harry Shearer
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Cult classic
14 October 2004 | by (The Hague, Netherlands) – See 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.

40 of 48 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Spinal-tap-ish things that really happened jeff5102
Funniest moment? LarryKingGeoff
Is this movie making fun of any particular rock band? teenbk2002-1
Delete your post 'Spinal Tap ' style KesagakeBoy
8 out of 11???? kuvv
Favorite little details m_a_singer
Discuss This Is Spinal Tap (1984) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: