8.0/11
116,399
346 user 133 critic

This Is Spinal Tap (1984)

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

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ON DISC
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
1,662 ( 60)
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 <jwp@aber.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

'Spinal Tap' does for sex, drugs & rock n' roll what Sound of Music did for hills 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:

Rock 'n' Roll Nightmare 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 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.70 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Before the first song, an announcer introduces the band by saying "Ladies and gentlemen, direct from Hell, Spinal Tap." That's is a play on Venom's intro tape from the early 1980s: "Now, from the very depths of Hell, Venom!" See more »

Goofs

Throughout the film, whenever the band is interviewed in front of the castle, 2x4's are visible through the windows, revealing that it's just a facade. 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

Anjelica Huston's name is incorrectly listed as 'Angelica Huston' at the beginning of the end titles, but correctly spelled 'Anjelica Huston' in the full cast that appears further down the list. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Arrested Development: It Gets Better (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Minuet from String Quintet in E major, G.275
Composed by Luigi Boccherini
[Played at the end of "Heavy Duty"]
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Should be on the Top 100 of all time
4 August 2007 | by amitjuscSee all my reviews

I have seen this movie more times than any other movie ever. When I was 12 or 13, my brother rented it and we watched it 3 times in the same day. At first, I hated it because I didn't know any better, and my brother never "helped" me figure out why it was funny. The second time I watched it, I "got it" and have never been the same person ever since.

First off, the entire film is ad-libbed except for the songs and a few lines; which is the reason that people are talking over each other a lot, requiring repeated viewings to catch everything. It is in documentary format, so it all works for this type of film. The songs are hysterical but catchy at the same time, just like real 80's arena rock and hair metal (well some of it). It certainly helps to be a fan of the rock genre to enjoy the film, or you will miss out on some significant references and the basis for each of the band members.

There are no dull moments in this brisk, 82-minute film, and the sheer number of hysterical cameos (including Fran Drescher, Billy Crystal, Bruno Kirby, Howard Hesseman, Paul Shaffer and Anjelica Huston) kicks the film up to 11 as they all put in stellar performances.

This film should be in the Top 100, no question. On my list, it would be in the Top 10. Of course, American History X is currently rated #41, so that tells you something about the IMDb rating system.


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