Tapeheads (1988)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

In this high-energy satire of the music biz, Ivan Alexov (John Cusack) and Josh Tager (Tim Robbins) lose their jobs as security guards, and they decide to start their own video production company. Their first gigs are less than inspiring, including a rappin' commercial for a chicken-and-waffle place, a living will, and a right-wing Presidential-hopeful's (Clu Gulager) gala dinner. Eventually, they get to direct a heavy-metal music video which becomes a huge surprise success. But now the … More

Rating: R (adult situations/language, nudity)
Genre: Drama, Comedy
Directed By:
Written By: Jim Herzfeld, Bill Fishman, Peter McCarthy
In Theaters:
On DVD: Mar 13, 2001
Anchor Bay Entertainment


as Samantha

as Belinda

as Billy Diamond

as Lester Diamond

as Rock Star

as Record Executive

as Dick Slammer

as FBI Man #1

as Water Man

as Hitman #1

as Music Video Hostess

as Hitman #2

as Nikki Morton

as Hitman #3

as Merlin Hinkle

as Heavy Metal Fan

as Madame Olga

as Bartender

as Bald Executive

as Student Journalist

as Critic #1

as FBI Man #2

as News Anchor

as Video Protector

as Pimply Guard

as Calypso Dancer

as T-Shirt Vendor

as Body Buddy

as Foxy Extra

as Dutch Reagan

as Skateboarder

as Civic Security Guard

as Menudo Fan

as The Blender Children

as Cube Squared

as Flygirl

as Flygirl

as Swanky Modes Band

as Swanky Modes Band

as Ricky Fell

as Prosperty Through Ex...
Show More Cast

Friend Ratings

No Friends? Inconceivable! Log in to see what your friends have to say.


Critic Reviews for Tapeheads

All Critics (15) | Top Critics (5)

A painful attempt to satirize the making of rock videos that runs aground with a puerile plot and bombastic, self-infatuated delivery.

Full Review… | November 6, 2009
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

It's all good fun: likeable performances, unpretentious, larky direction, and a haphazard story.

Full Review… | February 9, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

The amiable screenplay by Mr. Fishman and Peter McCarthy is often funny, and never worse than silly.

Full Review… | May 20, 2003
New York Times
Top Critic

All of these elements have been lifted off the shelf of exhausted cliches, given a quick dusting, and plugged directly into the movie.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

The irony is that nothing Fishman and his cohorts have come up with is really as funny as a two-hour slice of MTV itself.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Washington Post
Top Critic

Ignored both at the cinema and on tape, this is a gem that is as happy sending up the music video world as it is poking fun at politics.

Full Review… | November 6, 2009

Audience Reviews for Tapeheads

I love this movie, and it's virtually unheard of! It has two big stars: Tim Robbins and John Cusack, as two unemployed friends who start a music video production company, and the craziness that occurs along the way. It's really fun and entertaining, and very funny. It's one of my favourite movies from 88.

AJ Verser

Super Reviewer


John Cusak's stash is the funniest thing I've seen on a human being. This movie is another buddy 80's movie and if you don't enjoy those then you probably won't like this. It does have a lot of heart and Mike Myers pretty much stole this idea for Wayne's World and gets ZERO credit.

Conner Rainwater

Super Reviewer

Good flick.

Jason Spencer

Super Reviewer

Tapeheads Quotes

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

Discussion Forum

Discuss Tapeheads on our Movie forum!