View Full Version : What's so great about Spinal Tap?

08-28-2001, 04:12 PM
Ok, so "This is Spinal Tap" is #170-somthing on IMDB's top-250 movies. I've heard nothing but raves about it. I loved "Waiting for Guffman" and "Best in Show" so I thought it was a no brainer. I rented it, expecting more genius from Christopher Guest and friends.

And both my girlfriend and I were bored silly. She actually got up to do the dishes in the middle. I struggled through to the end. There were maybe 5 funny bits in the whole movie that I saw, (The bassist getting stuck in his coccoon, the amps that go to 11, the little stonehenge, the violin on the guitar, and MAYBE Paul Shaffer yelling "kick my ass") but the rest just bored me to tears. That was the longest 82 minutes of my life.

Now I'm going to have a hard sell getting the gf to watch Guffman or BiS... :(

Can someone explain to me what makes this a classic? What am I missing? I much preferred "Fear of a Black Hat" and that was practically the same movie, except with rappers instead of rockers. Are we the only two people to hate it?

Silver Fire
08-28-2001, 04:24 PM
What's so great about Spinal Tap?

Ike Witt
08-28-2001, 04:59 PM
I saw This is Spinal Tap when it first came out. I remember walking out of the theater thinking "I paid $5.00 to see that?" As I thought about it more and more over the next few days, I couldn't stop laughing. It really is a good mock-documentary.

However, if you didn't find it as funny as you want, you should try to find Fear of a Black Hat.

Sir Rhosis
08-28-2001, 05:13 PM
If you have seen the real documentaries it spoofs, it add 95% to the humor and appreciation of it.

But on the other hand, different strokes, etc. etc, and something abouts cups of tea.

Sir Rhosis

08-28-2001, 05:37 PM
Originally posted by gonzoron
Can someone explain to me what makes this a classic? What am I missing? I much preferred "Fear of a Black Hat" and that was practically the same movie, except with rappers instead of rockers. Are we the only two people to hate it?

Well, for one thing, it was the first (to my knowledge) of the mockumentary genre. I really laugh my ass off when I watch it, still to this day. It's a spoof of the rock culture AND the documentary movie.

CB4 and Fear of a Black Hat may be funnier (I don't agree with that), but they had Spinal Tap's shoulders to stand on. Plus, Rap culture is quite a bit sillier than rock culture, so there's a little more source material.

08-28-2001, 05:45 PM
It may have something to do with age as well...I first saw the film when it was released to theatres and found it amusing. Recently purchased the DVD and found it very, very funny. Compare the characters in the film to say, Jeff Beck or perhaps the Moody Blues and you may find that the film was funnily accurate in portraying a rock band that doesn't realize it may be time to stop.

08-28-2001, 05:54 PM
Didn't they make two of them? I thought I saw two.

08-28-2001, 06:03 PM
Maybe you have to be a musician or know one?

Sir Rhosis
08-28-2001, 06:07 PM

There was a so-so 90s "concert film/retrospective" video released, a sort of "Where Are They Now?" type of deal, in which the boys, among other things, tried adding a rap flavor to their music. I forget the exact title.

Sir Rhosis

"Oh, fuck the doves!"

08-28-2001, 06:29 PM
I thought, and still think, it's hilarious. Possibly the reason it's not so great to someone seeing it for the first time now is the Tolkien Syndrome.

Tolkien Syndrome: (n., towl'kin sin'drum) The reaction of a newcomer to a classic/originating/first-ever novel, movie, or musical piece after first having seen/read/listened to 20/30/40/50/60 years of imitations and knock-offs. Ex.: What the heck is so good about that Lord of the Rings stuff? Robert Jordan has that Tolkien guy beat by umpteen books!


08-28-2001, 06:35 PM
My god. I think Spinal Tap is sublime. I use semi-quotes from it all the time, much to my friends' chagrin.

"There's such a fine line between stupid and clever."

"You can't really dust for vomit, can you?"

Two words: Shit Sandwich.

"Well, that's just nitpicking, isn't it?"

or one of my all-time favorites..."I'm just as God made me, sir."

Or the one guy in the audience at the amusement park, watching them during the "Jazz Odyssey" doing the thumbs-down - priceless. I do that all the time. The scene with the cucumber...silly, but great. How the cold sore moves from one band member to the next...loverly. "Dobly". Man, I love that movie.

But when I showed it to my boyfriend, he was distinctly unimpressed. I think he missed a lot of the humor because he's not much of a music fan - a lot of what was funny to me was so because of all the real documentaries on say, the Rolling Stones (like Gimme Shelter) I've seen, and he hasn't.

::shrug:: To each his own, I guess.

King Rat
08-28-2001, 08:03 PM
A couple of weeks ago, Spinal Tap played here in NYC at the Beacon Theater. I didn't go, not wanting to risk 50 or 60 bucks. I had forgotten all about it until this thread. I only found one review, and it was positive: http://www.ink19.com/issues/july2001/liveInk/spinalTap.html

I saw the movie when it first came out and loved it. However, I saw it on video recently and I thought it was only funny in patches. Go figure.

Has anyone caught their live act?

08-28-2001, 08:39 PM
While I enjoyed Spinal Tap, when it comes to fake Rock Documentries, i prefered "the Rutles". If you like Monty Python, "the Rutles" is right up your alley(and for good reason).

oh yeah,and I loved "best in show" too.

08-28-2001, 09:02 PM
No post, just a sig...

08-28-2001, 09:42 PM
Spinal Tap definetly improves on further viewing. It's an amazingly subtle movie. Christopher Guest, for example, has the best reaction shots: when something goes over his head, he has this perfect look of cowlike stupidity, before his brain resets and he goes back to his last argument. ("Yeah, but... it goes to eleven!")

08-28-2001, 09:59 PM
While it might not be the movie for everyone, if you've ever been in a band or been in a close relationship with someone in a band, you will be able to find at least three or four scenes to which you will respond, "I know exactly what that's like."

Some of my favorite moments:

Nigel pointing to a guitar sitting on a stand and saying, "Listen to that sustain."

David, after Nigel leaves the stage at the AFB gig, saying, "We shant work together again," quite matter-of-factly.

Trying to find the stage and passing the same janitor repeatedly.

The looks on Nigel's face each time Jeanine (David's girlfriend) contributes something to the discussions. Oh yeah--been there, done that.

"Oh how they danced, the little children of Stonehenge!"

Dijon Warlock
08-28-2001, 10:09 PM
Originally posted by 5-HT
While I enjoyed Spinal Tap, when it comes to fake Rock Documentries, i prefered "the Rutles". If you like Monty Python, "the Rutles" is right up your alley(and for good reason). Indeed. Haven't seen "Spinal Tap," but always feel 'tis my duty to introduce fans of the "rock/mockumentary" genre to the Prefab Four.

Originally posted by Joe_Cool:

Well, for one thing, it was the first (to my knowledge) of the mockumentary genre. I really laugh my ass off when I watch it, still to this day. It's a spoof of the rock culture AND the documentary movie. This is Spinal Tap (http://us.imdb.com/Title?0088258) came out in 1984. The Rutles (http://us.imdb.com/Title?0077147) came out in 1978.

08-28-2001, 10:13 PM
Oh man, Harry Shearer always takes my breath away! He's an ace writer, but usually takes the bittiest on-screen roles; in Spinal Tap, he's the bass player. His cucumber scene was beautiful!

I enjoyed the movie most because I was well-esconced in the Chapel Hill music scene when it came out, and the movie's observations about umm, some, musician's and hanger-on's egos were funny as hell.

Perhaps immersion in that world endeared the humor to my mind. It was right on time. Bonus points to a pre-"Nanny" fame Fran Drescher for her portrayal of the A&R doyenne.

Crunchy Frog
08-28-2001, 10:21 PM
Originally posted by Miller
Spinal Tap definetly improves on further viewing. I agree. Many of the jokes are very subtle. I just recently noticed (and noticed is the wrong term, it was pointed out to me) during the song "Big Bottoms" that all three guys are playing bass guitar, the keyboardist stays at the low end of the keyboard, etc. Everything about the song, aside from the goofy lyrics, are about "bottoms."

And as has been said, Nigel's reactions are priceless. I love at the end, as the credits role, Marty DiBergi is asking the characters what they would be doing if they couldn't work in a rock band. Nigel says he'd be working in a haberdashery or something like that. Marty asks him if he would be happy in that sort of job and Nigel replies, "I don't know. What are the hours?"

Still cracks me up.

And if anyone with a DVD player hasn't seen the DVD of Spinal Tap, I highly recommend it. Christopher Guest, Michael McKean, and Hary Shearer do the voice over in character as (respectively) Nigel Tufnel, David St. Hubbins, and Derek Smalls. Throughout the film they gripe about what a hack job Marty DiBergi had done on them ("He never shows when we actually find the stage.") and how useless the manager was, etc. It was hilarious.

08-28-2001, 10:21 PM
"There live a race of people called the druids. Nobody
knows who they were, or what they were doing."

Close-ups of their eye shadow on stage.

Nigel's inability to make a sandwich out of tiny pieces of
bread, and the manager's sincere efforts to deal with this,
finally leading to, "I just want to know that this won't
affect your performance."

Unloading that demon-head thing at JFK airport.

The documentary director's stupid USS Cole hat.

The band's relation of the story of how they came to be
called The Thamesmen.

The footage of them on some "Ready Steady Go" program doing
"Gimme Some Money" with Ed Begley Jr. on drums.

Every little perfect detail.

08-28-2001, 11:17 PM
"Well I'm sure I'd feel much worse if I were'nt under such heavy sedation."

"We've got armadillos in our trousers. It's really quite frightening, the size."

Wayyyy too many to pick from... I love Tap! :D

08-28-2001, 11:29 PM
::shrugs:: It goes to eleven? ::shrugs::

08-29-2001, 12:08 AM
Their energy, their sheer exuberance, and their punctuality. They are one of Britain's loudest bands, which counts for something.

"Hello Cleveland!"

I love that film.

Soul Brother Number Two
08-29-2001, 12:53 AM
i saw them in san fran. it was effin hilarious. they did a wicked funny kingston trio take off as an opening, calling themselves the folksmen. they did a brilliant cover of satisfaction, im laughing like hell thinking about it.

i wouldnt have gone on my own, someone treated me, but i am SO glad i didnt miss it.

and as to the movie, you have to watch 5 times just to catch all the jokes. brilliant, brilliant movie.

sammy davis jr's autobiography is called 'yes i can, if frank sinatra says its ok.' that kills me.

Sultan Kinkari
08-29-2001, 01:02 AM
Originally posted by adam yax
It really is a good mock-documentary.

Wouldn't that make it a mockumentary?

Bill H.
08-29-2001, 01:35 AM
wishbone wrote
Wouldn't that make it a mockumentary?
Nigel: You know very much like, I'm really influenced by Mozart and Bach, and it's sort of in between those, really, it's like a Mach piece really.
Marty: What do you call this?
Nigel: Well, this piece is called "Lick My Love Pump."

08-29-2001, 01:52 AM
Many years after seeing the movie, I picked up the tape at the yard sale. After listening to it I became (and remain) eerily convinced that some of the old standards from the local radio station were actually Spinal Tap tunes that I hadn't recognized because I had forgotten were in the movie. (Like "Give Me Some Money," for one.)


Bill H.
08-29-2001, 02:23 AM
Nigel: "How much more black could this be?" and the answer is: "None ... none more black."
Lt. Hookstratten: This is our monthly "At Ease" weekend. It gives us a chance to let our hair down, although I see you've got a head start in that department. I shouldn't talk, though, I'm getting a little shaggy myself. I'd better not stand too close to you, people might think I'm part of the band. I'm joking, of course.
Artie Fufkin: You know what I want you to do? Will you do something for me?
David St. Hubbins: What?
Artie Fufkin: Do me a favor. Just kick my ass, okay? Kick this ass for a man, that's all. Kick my ass. Enjoy. Come on. I'm not asking, I'm telling with this. Kick my ass.
[Derek Smalls sets off a metal detector at the airport]
Airport Security Officer: Do you have any artificial plates or limbs?

How is it possible to not love that movie???
Derek Smalls: Er, not really.
[Reading a review of the album "Shark Sandwich"]
Marty DiBergi: Two words: shit sandwich.
Derek Smalls: It's like fire and ice, basically. I feel my role in the band is to be somewhere in the middle of that, kind of like lukewarm water.

Bill H.
08-29-2001, 02:24 AM
boy that was a mess. sorry.

Junior Spaceman
08-29-2001, 02:27 AM
Here's another big vote for this as one of the best movies of all time. I first saw it at 3-00am on an all night scouts party (strange, because I was never in the scouts, and that was the first time I ever stayed up all night). Every minute of it has at some point cracked me up - I think I've watched it 30 or 40 times from a tape taken from TV.

Most of my favourite moments have been given, but the scene where they are in the hotel room and one of their old songs is played (to much excitement), followed by the DJ saying they're a band well and truly in the 'Where are the Now' basket, is just beautiful.

I definitely think you have to have some appreciation of overblown 70's rock bands, and the movies they made, particuarly the 'mystical' scenes in 'The Song Remains The Same'.

"This really puts things in perspective, doesn't it?"
"Too much f**kin' perspective!"

08-29-2001, 04:34 AM
Oh my God. This movie definitely ranks, for me, as one of the 5 funniest movies in existence. I loved it the first time I saw it...even with all the hype.

I suppose the movie's appeal has to partly with what kind of humor you're into. It also helps a lot to be a big music fan. I love music, have played in bands myself, and have known a handful of people in the professional music circle, so I can identify with the characters in the movie, and they are so well satirized, it's absolute genius.

There's also the satirization of insipid pop artists taking themselves too seriously...resulting in such moments like "there's a fine line between clever and stupid" and the stonehenge fiasco.

Or how about the puppet show and Spinal Tap's "new direction" into a jazz-fusion band inspired by the bassist? Knowing bassists myself, I found this to be rolling-on-the-floor funny.

The band's inability to keep a drummer? The exaggerated rock-star deaths? (ie. choking on someone else's vomit?)

Going from memory here: "We just got canceled in Boston. Don't worry...it's not a big college town."

For me, every second line of dialogue was pure genius. I mean, look at all the quoted lines our fellow dopers have come up with. I can't think of any other movie off-hand that has so much memorable dialogue, with the exception of monty python films.

Oh, and one of the best...during one of Nigel's guitar solos, he picks up a violin, starts strumming his guitar with the violin, then stops and quickly tunes one of the strings of the violin! How can you not find that funny?

It's such a brilliant satire of the excesses of late 70s/early 80s stadium rock bands.

I gotta run out and rent it again.

08-29-2001, 08:43 AM
I think that the Tap is one of the great cultural landmarks of the 20th century. Perhaps this is an overstatement, but if you have ever seen "The Song Remains the Same" , you instantly recognize the genius behind the Tap.

Example : Discussing the cover-art for the latest Tap release "Smell the Glove"

"The cover is a picture of a woman on all fours with a dog collar and a leash on with a man's forearm shoving a black leather glove in her face. You don't find that sexist??"

"Well what's wrong with being sexy?"

08-29-2001, 08:46 AM
adam yax: Yeah, I said I liked FOABH in the OP. That movie is hysterical.

Everyone else: I still don't get it. :)

I've seen my share of rockumentaries on TV, although I've never been in a band myself.

I must like the style of humor, since I love Guest in Best in Show and Guffman, and I love McKeon in Clue and Best in Show, and even Laverne and Shirley. I love Shearer in the Simpsons and even Godzilla.

The lines you guys are quoting range from just ok, to pretty darn funny, in isolation. But in the movie they were so few and far between, I got bored waiting for them.

Gotta admit, getting lost on the way to the stage was funny, but at that point I had almost given up.

(Didn't notice the cold sore, by the way)

I saw it on DVD, maybe I should've put on the commetary track. A good MSTing makes any film better. :)

I just can't imagine sitting through it more than once to "get it".

jayjay Mahybe it was Tolkien Syndrome, or as I like to call it Casablanca Syndrome.

08-29-2001, 10:06 AM
Actually, Sir, there were at least two (check Amazon.com):

"This Is Spinal Tap" (Special Edition) (1984) -- Rob Reiner, Michael McKean;

"The Return of Spinal Tap (1992)" -- VHS

"Spinal Tap - Break Like the Wind Music Videos (1992)" -- VHS

08-29-2001, 10:10 AM
I think it also helps if you look at the bands Tap was based on, especially the lyrics of 80's deep purple. The line "Swimming in a sea of retarded sexuality" covers many heavy metal bands of that time. It's also the style and the way they threw lines away that on second thought are just funny. The subtlety of some of the jokes are hilarious, and the stupidity of the band, well that kills me.

My favourites:
"How much more Black can it get and the answer is none....none more black"

"People should envy us, I envy us
Yeah me too,"

"Oh we got a bigger dressing room than the puppets,"

"It's not your job to be as confused as Nigel"

"exciting this computer Magic... wheee"

08-29-2001, 10:15 AM
Another thing to consider is that much of the humor was improv.

My favorite scene is where Nigel complains about the food and sandwiches.

"look.. who's in here? No one! And over here, look, it's alittle guy."

"If you keep folding it..."

"It's a complete catastrophe!"

Another fav part is when the guy is giving htem directions to the stage and he says "go down that way, a little jog" and Derek Smalls says "We don't have time for that"

08-29-2001, 10:30 AM
Originally posted by Oblong
Another thing to consider is that much of the humor was improv.

Actually, all of it was improv. They had the scenes mapped out and certain things that had to happen, but all the dialog was improvised. For example, in the interview with DiBergi discussing bad reviews. etc, they didn't know what the reviews were going to be. He sprung them on the band completely unprepared. They shot the movie by walking around in character and filming it. (source: cast commentary on the This Is Spinal Tap quicktime cdrom movie--different commentary from the DVD)

And my favorite piece of dialog (one of, anyway):

DiBergi: so the last time you were here, you played in 12,000, 15,000 seat arenas. Now you're plaing in 1200, 1500 seat arenas. Does that mean that the groups popularity is waning?

Ian: No, I don't think it's that their popularity is waning, I think it's that their appeal is becoming more selective.

08-29-2001, 11:28 AM
Just thought of another
Howard Hessman (AKA Johnny Fever on WKRP)is trying to get out of a conversation with the band so he can get his star away he states:
Look guys it was nice talking to you but we've got to go over there to sit and wait for our ride."

Cold and funny.

08-29-2001, 12:20 PM
That was great. It was the delivery. "Look guys, it was nice talking to you but we've got to go over there and.... wait for the limo"

As soon as they leave "What a wanker."

same scene:
When Ian first sees Howard Hessman he runs up to him and and Hessman turns and thinks for a minute


I also like the part with the hotel clerk trying to explain his mixup: "well it's a king leisure (pronounecd Lezshur)"

I also liked the idea of the musical based on jack the ripper "Saucey Jack-he's a naughty boy"

08-29-2001, 01:50 PM
Oblong: Believe me, if there's anyone who'll appreciate improv, it's me. I was in my college troupe for 2 years, stage managed one long-form improv production, and acted in another, and I've been a big fan/occaisional participant ever since. As I said, I loved Guffman and Best in Show, which were also completely improv. That fact that Spinal Tap was improv was a major reason I wanted to see it.

A friend of mine (also an improv fanatic, founder of my troupe, and a student of Upright Citizen's Brigade) and I were discussing Best in Show a while ago, and his contention was that "remember it's improv" doesn't excuse something that's bad. Or in that case, that knowing it's improv shouldn't make you like it if you didn't before. Ideal improv should seem like it isn't. "What makes good theatre makes good improv."

At the time, I could see his point, but didn't know if I bought it. Now it's clear. I knew Spinal Tap was improv, I love improv, and I still didn't like it. :)

08-29-2001, 03:57 PM
but doesn't the fact that it's improv make you appreciate it more if the jokes aren't AS funny as if written before hand?

Don't get me wrong, I think it's hilarious either way, but for shows like "Who's Line Is It Anyway?", my standards for laughing are lower knowing that it's improv.

Humor is in the eye of the beholder. I'm not arrogant enough to say you are stupid for not liking it. To each his own.

Anyone see them when they were on The List with Mick Fleetwood?

08-29-2001, 05:09 PM
Up front, I loved Spinal Tap. It helps that I'm 40, and grew up listening to a host of English heavy metal and "progressive rock" bands. In my teens, I took many of them seriously. By the time I was 23, of course, I knew what utter morons most of those guys were, ESPECIALLY when they were trying hard to be profound!

I mean, I STILL love listening to old Led Zeppelin, Yes, Black Sabbath, and King Crimson records... but my love is tempered by the knowledge that Jimmy Page is a pedophilic coke-head, that Jon Anderson's lyrics are pretty much New Age drivel, that the COMBINED I.Q. of everyone who ever belonged to Black Sabbath is about 50, and that Robert Fripp is a pompous dweeb.

Heck, in the weeks after John Lennon died, I heard dozens of retrospectives on TV and on the radio, and got to hear John Lennon's takes on every subject from God to the Viet Nam war, to the world economy... and I swear, he sounded just like Nigel Tufnel!

In short, to appreciate Spinal Tap, it HELPS to be a recovering rock fan- one who still has an affection for the music, but who's rather amused at himself for taking it so seriously.


But as for the original poster... well, if you just didn't find it funny, what can ANYONE say to change your mind?
I mean, a movie (like a joke) either strikes you as funny or it doesn't.

In your life, you've probably seen dozens of movies and heard hundreds of jokes you didn't think were the least bit funny. Did ANY of them get funnier after someone gave you a lenghthy explanation of whay they were hilarious?

08-29-2001, 05:34 PM
I loved this movie when it first came out, and I think I love it more now. I appreciate it more every time I see it. When I first saw Tap, I hadn't seen either "The Song Remains the Same" or "Gimme Shelter" - now I appreciate more of the jokes.

08-29-2001, 06:21 PM
Originally posted by Crunchy Frog
Originally posted by Miller
Spinal Tap definetly improves on further viewing. I agree. Many of the jokes are very subtle. I just recently noticed (and noticed is the wrong term, it was pointed out to me) during the song "Big Bottoms" that all three guys are playing bass guitar, the keyboardist stays at the low end of the keyboard, etc. Everything about the song, aside from the goofy lyrics, are about "bottoms."

Not only that, but the bass player is playing a double neck bass on bass. When Nigel leaves, they ask the keyboard player if he can play a second bass line (hes already playing one), to make up. You really have to be a musician to notice some of the things in this movie.

08-29-2001, 07:01 PM
I also have a question...

Are we still going to do Stonehenge tomorrow?

08-29-2001, 07:13 PM
I'm moving this puppy to our new forum, Cafe Society.

Crunchy Frog
08-29-2001, 07:15 PM
Originally posted by Czarcasm
I'm moving this puppy to our new forum, Cafe Society. You lost me, Czarcasm. What scene was that in?


Max Harvey
08-30-2001, 01:52 AM
Originally posted by Joe_Cool
Actually, all of it was improv.

Amazing, I also thought it was "only" mostly improv. All the dialogue being made up on the spot makes it an undeniable masterpiece.

Anyone notice the platter of separated Oreos in the dressing room? I always thought that scene was unrealistic until I read Michael Bolton's dressing room requirements on the Smoking Gun.

The DVD is a must. There's at least an HOUR of extra footage, most of which would have been good enough to be included the first time. The bits where Derek is trying to settle his divorce over the phone had me choking for air. (I remember hearing that there was a 5-hour bootleg version, any truth to that?)

And I'm surprised no one's mentioned the Simpsons episode, which I think should be considered Tap canon (despite the fact they die a horrible death).

"No one rocks harder than Bill and Marty!"
"Well, we don't know that, do we."

08-30-2001, 08:00 AM
Where is that Derek scene? Is it in the movie or in the section on deleted scenes?

I didn't watch the whole movie chronologically on DVD yet, I just jump from scene to scene.

08-30-2001, 09:03 AM
Yes, the fact that it's improv would make me appreciate and enjoy it more, if I already liked it at least somewhat. But it shouldn't (and didn't) cause a complete reversal from hating it to loving it (or even liking it). I'll cut it a little slack, but it should still entertain me, and keep my interest.

astorian: You're absolutely right. I didn't expect anybody to sway me, but just a little insight into what y'all found so great about it. I think I got that, and I thank you.

After thinking about it, I think the fault I have with it may be in the editing and/or direction. There were funny bits in the improv, but there was also a lot of dead space. And from what Max Harvey said, there was a lot of funny stuff left out.

08-30-2001, 09:14 AM
Supposedly, when Rod Stewart saw it he stomped out of the theater because it struck a little too close to home. "I thought it was supposed to be a comedy, not my bloody biography!"

Another contender for the "real" Spinal Tap would be Uriah Heep. I refer you to "The Magician's Birthday." If that isn't really Tap I'll eat my hat.

All in all, one of the great movies but, as with all parodies, the more familiar you are with everything they are sending up the funnier it will be.

Ike Witt
08-30-2001, 09:56 AM
Well I am sure glad that others have stampeded to the defence of This is Spinal Tap. A couple of people have mentioned the DVD (new version is supposed to be better than the Criterion Collection version). The new DVD includes a few videos, and I think that the video for Hell Hole looks like the prototypical 1980's video. Also, find and listen to their songs. They are truely funny.

08-30-2001, 11:47 AM
Umm...I thought the edit was pretty tight, myself. I watched the DVD, and I found a lot of the extra footage to be pretty boring. Getting the limo driver high was okay, and there were a couple other nice points, but I think the final edit was excellent, and the scenes that needed to be cut, did get cut.

It's funny, I really never thought of Spinal Tap as having a lot of dead space. In fact, I thought it had very little dead space, but then again, I like slower-paced, character-based comedies more than XTREME 90s style shite.

08-30-2001, 12:12 PM
My girlfriend fits me like a flesh tuxedo,
I want to sink her with my Pink Torpedo!

Poetry. enough to bring a tear to your eye.

as a bit of trivia, Soundgarden used to play a serious version of that song live in their earliy days.

08-30-2001, 12:42 PM
1. The cast: Rob Reiner, Michael McKean, Christopher Guest, Harry Shearer, Howard Hesseman,Bruno Kirby, Anjelica Huston, Fran Drescher, Billy Crystal, Dana Carvey, Paul Shaffer, Ed Begley, Jr., the neighbor from The Jeffersons (I can't think of his name)...

2. The presence of Gumby throughout the movie

3. The coldsores

4. "I think the problem may have been that the set was in danger of being crushed by dwarves. That tended to understate the largeness of the object..." (or something like that)

5. The limo scene with Bruno Kirby--"fuckin' limeys..."

6. "Ah, but it is green"--Nigel explaining that his black t-shirt with a green skeleton on it is exactly what his skeleton looks like.

7. "I'm sorry, we don't have that. Do you wear black?"

Ike Witt
08-30-2001, 01:04 PM
Originally posted by TwistofFate

as a bit of trivia, Soundgarden used to play a serious version of that song live in their earliy days.

The Soundgarden cover of Big Bottom was the best thing that I found on an unnamed file sharing service.

08-30-2001, 01:44 PM
Ah yes, the cold sores! I forgot.

Didn't David have them one day, then Nigel the next?

I saw Angelica Huston in the credits but couldn't find her in the movie. Maybe it wasn't THE Angelica Huston. They were listed chronologically and it was right around Paul Schaeffer.

08-30-2001, 01:51 PM
The cold sores were actually herpes sores, that the band all got from the lead singer of their support act. All of this was from scenes that were cut, but all are on the flip side of the great Criterion DVD.

Angelica Houston was the artist who created the 18" Stonehenge model.

08-30-2001, 03:44 PM
Originally posted by TwistofFate

as a bit of trivia, Soundgarden used to play a serious version of that song live in their earliy days.

What do you mean by serious? I'm pretty sure Soundgarden was aware that the song was meant to be funny.

Originally posted by Oblong

I saw Angelica Huston in the credits but couldn't find her in the movie. Maybe it wasn't THE Angelica Huston. They were listed chronologically and it was right around Paul Schaeffer.

It is THE Angelica Huston. I couldn't find her for ages either, but it's because she looks so different in the movie. She plays Polly Deutsch, the artist who builds the tiny Stonehenge.

08-30-2001, 06:34 PM
Yeah, what is so great about Spinal Tap? Why would someone make a movie about them? They suck!

A classmate said that to me in my first year of high school. I laughed and laughed but didn't tell him the truth.

"We are not going to do a free form jazz exploration in front of a festival crowd!"


08-31-2001, 02:21 PM
The first time I saw Spinal Tap I found it to be laugh aloud funny.

The second time, I thought it was funny, but not laugh aloud funny.

I think it was the company. Watching movies in a group can be like that: If your company finds it LOL funny, so will you. If not, well, you're out of luck. I call this "The Hudson Hawk Syndrome." (Long story).

Spinal Tap remains one of my all time favorite movies even if I don't always laugh aloud. The DVD is on my purchase list.

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