6.8/10
2,496
53 user 27 critic

They Might Be Giants (1971)

In a Manhattan psychiatric hospital a man, convinced he is Sherlock Holmes, is treated by a female doctor who happens to be named Watson.

Director:

Anthony Harvey

Writers:

James Goldman (screenplay), James Goldman (play)
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ON DISC
Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
George C. Scott ... Justin
Joanne Woodward ... Watson
Jack Gilford ... Peabody
Lester Rawlins Lester Rawlins ... Blevins
Al Lewis ... Messenger
Rue McClanahan ... Daisy
Ron Weyand Ron Weyand ... Dr. Strauss
Oliver Clark ... Mr. Small
Theresa Merritt ... Peggy
Jenny Egan Jenny Egan ... Miss Finch
Jane Hoffman Jane Hoffman ... 2nd Telephone Operator
Michael McGuire ... Telephone Guard
Eugene Roche ... Policeman
James Tolkan ... Mr. Brown
Kitty Winn ... Grace
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Storyline

They Might be Giants chronicles the adventures of Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson in modern-day New York City. The fact that Sherlock Holmes is a psychotic paranoid and Dr. Watson is a female psychiatrist fascinated by his case is almost beside the point. Dr. Watson follows Holmes across Manhattan and is, against her better judgment, drawn into the master detective's world of intrigue and danger. This is a sweet, goofy and fairly romantic film that asks the questions "Whose reality is right...and does it really matter?" Written by John Gerrath <jagerrat@uoguelph.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

When they reach out for each other... they touch every heart... with warmth, charm and laughter!


Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 June 1971 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A detektív és a doktor See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The title is derived from Miguel de Cervantes' novel "Don Quixote." Quixote tilted at windmills because he was sure they were giants. In this movie, Justin states that Quixote was crazy to be convinced that windmills are giants. But to wonder if "they might be giants" - that's another matter. See more »

Goofs

When Scott and Woodward are riding in a taxi, from his angle the cab is stopped; from her angle the cab is moving. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Mildred Watson: You're just like Don Quixote. You think that everything is always something else.
Justin Playfair: Well, he had a point. 'Course he carried it a bit too far. He thought that every windmill was a giant. That's insane. But, thinking that they might be, well... All the best minds used to think the world was flat. But what if it isn't? It might be round. And bread mold might be medicine. If we never looked at things and thought of what might be, why we'd all still be out there in the tall grass with the apes.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: "Jehovah has the Devil, Achilles has his Heel, Mohammed has his Mountain, Don Quixote has his Windmills; and SHERLOCK HOLMES, God bless him, has his MORIARTY"
  • from Watson's Journal
See more »

Alternate Versions

The original theatrical release length of the film was 98 minutes. None of the streaming or DVD versions (save for the US Anchor Bay release) currently available include the full film; the Netflix version runs 91:15 and the Universal DVD on demand runs only 84 minutes. The penultimate scene in the grocery store is missing in these versions. See more »

Connections

References Don Quijote de la Mancha (1947) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Magical film, full of poetry
7 May 1999 | by SMK-4See all my reviews

If you look for flaws in this film you will find plenty. Still, I gave this film a 10 vote because it has overriding qualities which are extremely rare. It is a magical film, full of poetry, it touches you where other films cannot reach. It creates a fantasy world of its own in the midst of modern society, a fantasy world which is utterly implausible and yet so compellingly persuasive.

The cast of this gem is mesmerisingly excellent, all parts I can think of are cast with character actors who on their own have stolen entire films from the stars. The central performance by George C. Scott is majestic, and so is John Barry's wonderful score. The film contains many memorable scenes, but outstanding amongst the lot is the supermarket scene. If I had to compile a list of the ten best scenes ever put to celluloid, this would be included.

Unique.


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