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This Is Spinal Tap - Criterion Collection
This Is Spinal Tap - Criterion Collection
Actors: Christopher Guest, Michael McKean, Harry Shearer, Tony Hendra, Ed Begley Jr.
Director: Rob Reiner
Genres: Comedy, Drama
R     1998     1hr 22min

Rob Reiner's directorial debut has developed into a cult phenomenon. The film that invented the "rockumentary" has now outlasted most of the bands it mocked. Following the ill-fated American comeback tour of an aging heavy...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Christopher Guest, Michael McKean, Harry Shearer, Tony Hendra, Ed Begley Jr.
Director: Rob Reiner
Genres: Comedy, Drama
Sub-Genres: Rob Reiner, Billy Crystal, Drama
Studio: Criterion
Format: DVD - Color,Letterboxed
DVD Release Date: 07/08/1998
Original Release Date: 03/02/1984
Theatrical Release Date: 03/02/1984
Release Year: 1998
Run Time: 1hr 22min
Screens: Color,Letterboxed
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 22
Edition: Criterion Collection
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Languages: English
Subtitles: English
See Also:

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Movie Reviews

Criterion does it again.
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Just about anybody reading this review has probably seen "This is Spinal Tap" as many times as the band has changed drummers. What you really want to know is whether the DVD extras are worth the price. YES. Theatrical trailers about cheese rolling festivals, David St. Hubbins with strait hair in an early short that eventually evolved into the film, Rob Reiner begging people to show the movie in their theaters, deleted scenes that develop and explain the cold sores the band keeps ending up with, and the bloody demise of Janine (well, we can dream can't we?) all this and more can be yours for the low low price of...whatever. Anyway, if you're a Tap fan and you've got a DVD player, get this disc. If you're a Tap fan and you've got this disc, get a DVD player. If you're a Tap fan without the disc or a DVD player, talk your rich buddy with all the cool home theater equipment into buying this disc, then watch it at his place and eat all the potato chips in the house. If you're not a Tap fan, you can get a copy of "The Sound of Music" around here somewhere, I'm pretty sure. I've always thought of Derrick Smalls as kind of a short hairy version of Julie Andrews anyway."
Mime is money!
Lynwood E. Hines | Saint George, SC USA | 02/05/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Superb (m/r)ockumentary of the semi-fictitious band "Spinal Tap", made up of Michael McKean ("Lenny", soul mate of Squigy, on the TV series "Laverne & Shirley"), Christopher Guest (actor/director of "Waiting for Guffman"), Harry Shearer (performs voices of 22 different characters on "The Simpsons"), and a random selection of ever-changing drummers. The movie is a tongue-in-cheek parody of washed-up hard rock bands that still think they are God's gift to the universe. The inspired idiocy borders on genius at times, lending weight to Michael's observation that there is a "fine line between stupid and clever".The DVD is simply amazing. For starters, everything is in character. From the style of the main menu title screen, to the menu voice-overs by the band, and extending through all of the extra material included on the DVD, the personas of the band (and the fictitious director as well) are maintained with perfect consistency.What makes this all the more amazing is the shear quantity of extras on the disk. For starters, there is about an hour of "deleted" scenes provided. In addition, there are numerous music videos, TV commercials (fake I presume???), and trailers. And as if that weren't enough, there is also a commentary track throughout the entire film with the band members, completely in character, being as hilariously idiotic as they are in the film. The Spinal Tap commentary track is easily the most entertaining commentary in my extensive DVD library.The DVD medium is put to splendid use as well. Menu transitions are computer animations inspired by some of the film's funniest moments. Each menu plays a different "Tap" song, giving you access to a decent percentage of the sound track. And, just as importantly, the animations are not overdone; the menus are still easy to use, and the transitions only take a few seconds.Overall, this DVD is a great value, and provides a vast amount of material not available in the VHS version. If you are a Tap fan, or would like to be, you NEED this DVD!Movie
Originality: A
Creativity: A
Complexity/Depth: B-
Relevance/Message: B
Artistic Merit: A
Overall Entertainment Value: A
Transfer Quality: A
Extras: A+
Use of Medium: A
J. Maher | Chicago, IL | 06/06/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"The gods of comedy rock, Spinal Tap, will be re-releasing theirhilariously brilliant mockumentary This Is Spinal Tap by releasing itin theaters again and presenting anew video and DVD version of the infamous film. MGM Home Entertainment notes that the 1984 rock comedy, about a fictitious over the hill heavy metal band on their comeback tour, will re-released on VHS and DVD after being out of print for several years. The new special edition home video versions of the film will boast new audio commentary from the cast, an hour's worth of deleted scenes, beefed up sound and video, and more. Some of the goodies turned up on a This Is Spinal Tap CD-ROM that surfaced in the early '90s and later on the first DVD version, but this new release will be different in many ways. Most notably, the new version will feature entirely new audio commentary. The previous DVD featured the cast members commenting out of character, this time actors Michael McKean, Harry Shearer, and Christopher Guest will offer commentary in character (as David St. Hubbins, Derek Smalls, and Nigel Tufnel, respectively)."
I have watched many DVD's, but this one takes the cake.
Lynwood E. Hines | 10/27/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Not only one of the funniest films ever, but the best "mockumentary" about rock'n roll ever made. Every rock band in the world, whether famous or not, will have at one time or another, quoted a line out of "Tap" & got a giggle during rehearsals. The DVD is another story. A dream for all Spinal Tap freaks. Not just commentary by the band AND the director AND hillarious trailers AND the Hell Hole video AND the famous 20 minute "demo" of the movie BUT ALSO over an hour of unbelievable outtakes!!!!! Never has there been a DVD of such quantity & quality. ALL DVD's should be put together like this. Mrs Presley!?"