Wednesday, September 4, 2013

This is Spinal Tap (1984)

Today's film is This is Spinal Tap.  I usually like mockumentaries by Christopher Guest.  He co-writes and stars in this film.  I truly enjoyed Best in Show and Waiting for Guffman.  (He's also in The Princess Bride so he gets bonus points).  But this is the least funniest movie he has ever been a part of.

The mockumentary follows the fictional band, Spinal Tap, as they travel on their comeback tour of America.  Unfortunately they find out they are not nearly as popular as they used to be.  They were never a great band; they were just an okay band riding on the popularity of their style.  However, most of their song lyrics are hilarious.  Such as "Big Bottom" which is about a ... big bottom, but all three front men are playing bass, so the sound truly matches the name.  Also, all of the actors are actually playing the instruments in the movie.

 There are some gems in this film, and the most familiar is that there amps go all the way to 11.  Also, there is a scene where Nigel plays his guitar with a violin, which mimics how Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin would play his guitar with a violin bow.  Supposedly the funniest scene is the little people dancing around the tiny Stonehenge, but I just thought that was stupid.

There is an actual documentary that is very similar to this film, but it is as funny as it is endearing.  It's about Anvil, an 80's metal band that never quite made it.  It's called Anvil: the Story of Anvil.  At the very end, they discover they have become big in Japan, so they go there to meet their crowds of fans.  That's exactly what happens at the end of this film, too.  I guess Japan loves its metal as much as we do.  I thought this was an okay mockumentary, I just didn't see much humor in it.  I will give this film a 6/11.

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