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Gigantic (A Tale of Two Johns) (2002)

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Documentary about the music group They Might Be Giants.


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Title: Gigantic (A Tale of Two Johns) (2002)

Gigantic (A Tale of Two Johns) (2002) on IMDb 7.6/10

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Credited cast:
John Linnell ...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Gina Arnold ...
Michael Azerrad ...
Adam Bernstein ...
David Bither ...
Frank Black ...
Brian Cohen ...
Patrick Dillett ...
Himself (as Pat Dillett)
Sue Drew ...
Jake Fogelnest ...
Joe Franklin ...


Gigantic is the story of They Might Be Giants, a unique musical group centered on John Flansburgh and John Linnell. We're introduced to the duo's lyrical and melodic craft when, for example, well-known actors recite Giants lyrics, underscoring the dark words often coupled with bright tunes. We also catch a glimpse of the band's ideas about performance from the blend of footage from concerts, television, music videos, and other media. Running through the whole film is a portrayal of the Johns' friendship and ultimately, their view of the world, which we see in interviews with the Giants themselves, their colleagues, and their fans. Written by Andy Zimolzak <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Documentary | Music





Release Date:

10 March 2002 (USA)  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$6,411 (USA) (23 May 2003)


$160,621 (USA) (3 October 2003)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


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Did You Know?


Annette O'Toole narrates a letter in the film during one of the film's "history" sequences, and did the research herself. She had been out of town filming Smallville (2001) when the director came to film her husband, Michael McKean. See more »


John Linnell: We ARE the shitty Beatles.
See more »


References Madonna: Truth or Dare (1991) See more »


I Can't Hide From My Mind
Written by John Linnell and John Flansburgh
Performed by They Might Be Giants
See more »

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User Reviews

As Enigmatic and Consistently Entertaining as the Band...
29 May 2003 | by (Lyndhurst, NJ) – See all my reviews

They Might Be Giants are one of the vanguards of rock music, and AJ Schnack's documentary does everything in its power to echo and reinforce that statement.

Gigantic is a great rock documentary, because it focuses on the band, the process, and their fanbase without becoming overly concerned with the personal lives of the artists. With the exception of musician Syd Straws scathing comments about the two "Johns" Flansburgh, and Linell : "So, are people being honest? Have they generally said NICE things about them? Yes? So, I guess those people don't really know them.", everybody involved in the film has nothing negative to say about the Johns, their creativity, their work ethic, and everybody from people who worked with the band early in their career, to people who work with them today all take great pleasure in extolling their own personal reasons for being TMBG enthusiasts.

No TMBG fan should go without seeing this movie, and fans of good rock documentaries will equally enjoy the great concert footage and musical interludes. (I submitted concert footage that didn't make it to the final cut of the film!)

John and John hosted the screening of the film that I saw, and as long as I've been a TMBG fan, I had never gotten a chance to meet and greet them personally. I'm pleased to say that they are as nice in person as one would imagine them to be!

My only gripe with the film, is that the filmmaker seems to build up to what can be noted as one of the bands greatest accomplishments, winning a Grammy in 2001 for the title track to Malcolm In the Middle "You're not the Boss of Me Now." then.....never gets there. The documentary ends right before that point in TMBG history. It's a small gripe, and I don't necessarily feel "cheated", but it's a very significant moment in the history of the band, and not many artists as far out of the "mainstream" as TMBG can make the claim that they have won the little gold gramophone statue for a million-selling album, much less a quirky TV theme song that didn't even make it to an full length TMBG album till AFTER they won the award.

But I digress.

A GIGANTIC film effort resulting in GIGANTIC fun.


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