EW Staff
September 15, 2000 AT 04:00 AM EDT

This is Spinal Tap

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
R
runtime
82 minutes
performer
Christopher Guest, Michael McKean, Rob Reiner, Harry Shearer, Ed Begley Jr., Fran Drescher, Paul Shaffer
guest performer
Billy Crystal
director
Rob Reiner
Producers
Spinal Tap Productions
distributor
Embassy Pictures Corporation
author
Christopher Guest, Michael McKean, Rob Reiner, Harry Shearer
genre
Comedy, musical

We gave it an A

The line between clever and stupid has never been clearer than on the stupendous rerelease This is Spinal Tap: Special Edition. Incorporating some of the best supplementary stuff from the now-out-of-print Criterion DVD (director Rob Reiner’s trailer/presentation reel of cheese-rolling — you have to see it — is a priceless holdover), and adding some newly unearthed footage (the deleted scene where the Tapsters pontificate on the bread-eating origins of primates is a giggle grenade), this edition adds what may well be the best commentary track ever. Christopher Guest, Michael McKean, and Harry Shearer reprise their Brit-rocker roles as lead guitarist Nigel Tufnel, guitarist-singer David St. Hubbins, and bassist/produce smuggler Derek Smalls for a dissertation on why Marty DiBergi’s rockumentary is a slanderous attempt at portraying them as inept losers. Whether the commentary was written beforehand or totally improvised on the spot, it’s a hysterical reminder of just how funny truly funny people can be. A

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