8.0/11
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345 user 78 critic

This Is Spinal Tap (1984)

R | | Comedy, Music | 2 March 1984 (USA)
Trailer
1:36 | Trailer

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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
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Popularity
1,414 ( 446)
2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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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
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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:

Crank it to Eleven See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Music

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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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 »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$30,835, 4 March 1984, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$244,557, 31 December 2000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Spinal Tap Prod. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.70 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When the members of Spinal Tap talk about their drummer suffocating on vomit, it's a reference to a number of musicians who have died, or who are rumored to have died, the same way, including Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham, AC/DC lead singer Bon Scott and big band leader Tommy Dorsey. See more »

Goofs

Before the Jazz Odyssey, David and Viv discuss the set list. David, running down the list says "Heavy, Hole." He's referring to two other Spinal Tap songs, "Heavy Duty" and "Hell Hole", in a sort of shorthand. 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 ...
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Crazy Credits

The credits state that the band Spinal Tap is fictional, and add "And there's no Easter Bunny, either!" See more »

Alternate Versions

Several versions of this film exist. A 4 hour bootleg is rumored to exist. The DVD and laserdiscs include some of this in a hour of deleted scenes, subplots, and alternate takes. Included: More with Bruno Kirby; A subplot with Spinal Taps opening act; Derek's legal troubles with his wife and much, much more. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Full Tilt Boogie (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Jazz Odyssey
Written by Michael McKean and Harry Shearer
Performed by Michael McKean and Harry Shearer
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Smell the Glove!
5 November 2002 | by freenachosSee all my reviews

The humor of "This is Spinal Tap" has a special time-release formula. I didn't find myself rolling on the floor laughing the first time I saw this but as the day went on my friends and I couldn't stop recalling the dialogue. This movie is a legend.

"See Spinal Tap" should be written in the dictionary next to satire. Lately satire has come to mean a simple mockery of pop-culture instead of "human vice or folly attacked through irony, derision or wit". Movies like "Scary Movie" claim to be parodies or satire without even trying to be witty. They just imitate something as opposed to commenting on it. True satire takes a bit more work by the writers and will make you laugh much harder.

Spinal Tap gives you the absurdity of the rock and roll world, yet still respects the music. I understood this when I saw a clip of the movie for the first time at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. It was the scene with amps that go to "11". I couldn't stop thinking about that scene until I finally saw the movie. Every aspect of the music world is lampooned; arrogance, absurdity, backstage crybabies, has-beenism, volume, even the Beatles. This movie is quoted like the Simpsons, which isn't always good but certainly proof of legendary movie. It's dry, deadpan humor and it may take a day to sink in but this movie is hilarious.


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