Experimental Film (song)

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"Experimental Film"
Single by They Might Be Giants
from the album The Spine
GenreAlternative rock
Songwriter(s)John Flansburgh, John Linnell
Producer(s)They Might Be Giants and Pat Dillett
They Might Be Giants singles chronology
"Man, It's So Loud in Here"
"Experimental Film"
Music video
Experimental Film on YouTube

"Experimental Film" is a song by alternative rock band They Might Be Giants. It is the lead single from their 2004 album The Spine.[1] The song has been seen by some critics as a return to the band's earlier sound.[1][2] An animated music video was made for the song by internet animators The Brothers Chaps and featured characters from the animators' internet series Homestar Runner.[3]

Though it saw no domestic release, "Experimental Film" was released promotionally in Great Britain. The disc included "Am I Awake?" and "Memo to Human Resources" as well as the single. The song was also released on a one-track promotional disc in Australia.

Subject matter[edit]

The song's lyrics are a satire of avant-garde cinema, and its perceived tendency toward meaninglessness and pomposity. The "narrator" of the song is an enthusiastic filmmaker who is attempting to make the eponymous movie. He extols its greatness, and makes grandiose statements about his abundance of ideas and his intention to make the viewer's "face implode" in the end, but the film is unfinished and lacks a discernible subject.[4]

Homestar Runner video[edit]

The video itself is a cartoon experimental film and is ostensibly directed by Homestar Runner cartoon characters Strong Sad and The Cheat. Their individual contributions are wildly different: Strong Sad's footage looks like it has been shot on black-and-white film, while The Cheat's portions are animated in his distinctively simplistic style. Initially the video simply cuts between the two, but as the video progresses, they are superimposed and mixed together more and more until the two become indistinguishable. Strong Sad's footage also includes other characters walking onto the set, and he is shown chasing them off of the set and berating them. The video is full of references to other experimental films.[5]

In spite of They Might Be Giants originally planning to make a separate video for the "MTV crowd",[6] they have declared the Homestar Runner video to be the song's official music video.[7]


The song has been translated into French on the Homestar Runner Wiki.


  1. ^ a b They Might Be Giants: The Spine music review PopMatters. Retrieved January 23, 2010.
  2. ^ They Might Be Giants: The Spine music review The A.V. Club. Retrieved January 23, 2010.
  3. ^ "They Might Be Giants artist info". Archived from the original on March 2, 2008. Retrieved March 2, 2008. Cooking Vinyl. Retrieved January 23, 2010.
  4. ^ Experimental Film posted by ParticleMan on YouTube
  5. ^ "They Might Be Giants: Tall Tales". exclaim.ca. September 2004. Archived from the original on July 13, 2012. Retrieved January 23, 2010.
  6. ^ PLAY: Get Your MoveOn Groove On Wired. Retrieved January 23, 2010.
  7. ^ Experimental Film (with Homestar Runner)- They Might Be Giants (official video) TMBG on YouTube

External links[edit]