Monday, 22 June 2015

I've Just Seen: This is Spinal Tap (1984)

This is Spinal Tap (1984)

Director: Rob Reiner

I tend to like the films of Rob Reiner. The Princess Bride and When Harry Met Sally are two of my most favourite films, and really enjoyed Stand By Me. Spinal Tap was Reiner's debut feature film: a great way to start an amazing run of films.

The candid mockumentary style heightens the comedy, as the hilarious lines are slipped into normal conversation, catching the audience by surprise. Christopher Guest and Michael McKean get most of the best lines, though Shearer gets one of the funniest moments, getting stuck in a strange alien pod onstage: the ending of that scene is brilliant. The band getting lost backstage, and the discussion about the sexism of 'Smell the Glove''s cover are also fantastic. This is no great narrative thread, except that the band are making their way around America on tour. This aimlessness works well in the film: the band are as unsure about what is going to happen next as the audience.

The funniest parts of the film are the bands songs: 'Big Bottom' and 'Sex Farm' have wonderfully terrible lyrics. The songs from the bands history, particularly from the 60s and 70s are even funnier: 'Listen to the Flower People,' with its trippy-dippy clothes is a nice piece of satire.

This is Spinal Tap is very funny, even if you know nothing about heavy metal (I do not).

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