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GIGANTIC: A TALE OF TWO JOHNS, about the quirky rock group They Might Be Giants, profiles leaders John Linnell and John Flansburgh who are a success story in and of themselves. Childhood friends from Lincoln, Massachusetts who moved to Brooklyn, New York and began working collaboratively in the early 1980s, the Johns have spent their careers locked into a strong, productive friendship. The duo's roots lie in a combination of punk and new wave, inspiring them to write clever songs with pop beats and introspective, often-sad lyrics. Archival concert footage shows the Johns in their early days on the performance art scene in the East Village, where they pulled off such gimmicks as "Lie Still, Little Bottle" during which Flansburgh pounds the stage with a microphone attached to a large stick. Raw and inventive MTV videos for "Don't Let's Start" and "Ana Ng" are a reminder of the exciting emergence of 80s music-television overnight stardom. And the Dial-A-Song concept, which allowed fans to call an answering machine and hear a constantly changing off-the-cuff TMBG song, shows the fundamentally experimental side of the band. While the most poignant moments come from the Johns candidly discussing their writing process and aspects of working together, interviews with NPR host Ira Glass and reporter Sarah Vowell express the delight that TMBG fans find in the band's smart, funny, accessible songs. In addition, celebrities such as Janeane Garofalo and Andy Richter give interpretive readings of TMGB lyrics. Eventually the film turns to the recording of their album NO! in 2001, having spanned 20 years of TMGB history.
- Best Documentary DVD (Nominee)
2004 Golden Satellite Awards (United States)
- Best Documentary of the Year (Winner)
2003 Chlotrudis Awards (Boston, United States)
- Special Jury Award (Honorable Mention for Documentary)
2003 Sarasota Film Festival (Sarasota, United States)