Their 2009 documentary The Story Of Anvil has made them famous the world over, following seemingly endless years of energy-sapping tours de force marked by dismal organizational conditions. Their albums are considered landmarks among a musical genre which is otherwise successively losing its identity.
The band, in particular Kudlow and Reiner, was the subject of the 2008 documentary film, Anvil! The Story of Anvil, directed by the screenwriter and former Anvil roadie, Sacha Gervasi. Upon its release, the film garnered critical acclaim from many major publications, and has since brought the band renewed recognition, including opening slots with AC/DC and Saxon. Appearances at both major heavy metal festivals, including Download, Loud Park and Hellfest, and independent music festivals like Bumbershoot and SXSW, also followed the release of the film. Reviewers described Anvil as a pioneering hair metal band that was popular in the 1980s but then faded into obscurity in the 1990s, while refusing to stop playing, recording and gigging. Anvil’s antics on and off stage, the setbacks they suffered, and their determination to keep going was compared to the fictional band Spinal Tap.