The Giant Mechanical Man

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The Giant Mechanical Man
Giant Mechanical Man.jpg
Theatrical poster
Directed by Lee Kirk
Produced by Jenna Fischer
Molly Hassell
Michael Nardelli
Brent Stiefel
Written by Lee Kirk
Starring Jenna Fischer
Chris Messina
Malin Akerman
Topher Grace
Music by Rich Ragsdale
Cinematography Doug Emmett
Edited by Robert Komatsu
Taggart Productions
Votiv Films
Two Tall Boots
Distributed by Tribeca Films
Release date
  • April 27, 2012 (2012-04-27)
Running time
94 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $900,000[1]
Box office $7,396[2]

The Giant Mechanical Man is an American dramedy film written and directed by Lee Kirk. It debuted at the 2012 Tribeca Film Festival and was distributed by Tribeca Films.


Janice (Jenna Fischer) is a woman in her 30s who has yet to learn how to navigate adulthood. Tim (Chris Messina) is a devoted street artist who finds that shows as a silver-painted street performer don't pay the bills and leads his girlfriend to break up with him. Janice is evicted from her apartment and forced to move in with her overbearing sister, Jill (Malin Akerman). Janice receives pressure to date an egotistical self-help guru called Doug (Topher Grace).[3] However, she meets Tim when they both end up working at the zoo.

As Janice and Tim begin working together at the zoo, they slowly develop a lighthearted connection that evolves into a quality friendship. They incidentally bump into each other a couple of times away from work, and eventually end up agreeing to go out on a date. The date goes exceedingly well, and they end up sleeping together; then developing a great connection via conversation afterward.

Janice's sister, Jill, spends most of the movie trying to create a relationship between Janice and Doug, which really is something in which Janice has no interest. While on a semi-forced date with Doug, Janice walks by Tim while he's in his Mechanical Man costume and does not realize it is him. At this opportune moment, Doug has his arm around her and goes in for a kiss as they turn the corner out of Tim's line of sight. Janice declines his advances but Tim, unfortunately, doesn't see.

Tim is very hurt and cuts off contact with her, which is confusing to her since she doesn't know that he saw her and Doug together.

As she leaves a movie theater where Tim was supposed to join her and meet Jill, she sees the Giant Mechanical Man again, and takes the opportunity to confess her situation to him. As she continues talking, he reveals himself to be Tim, and they clasp hands as they face each other and smile.

Credits roll, and short scenes appear hinting at a happy relationship unfolding over an indeterminate period of time.



Filming began in November 2010 in Detroit, Michigan. Many scenes were shot in the Detroit Zoo.


As of July 2013, the film holds a 71% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes, which indicates generally positive reviews.[4]

Variety's John Anderson gave the film a positive review, stating that the film "will meet most audiences' standards for 'charming.'" Anderson also noted that Grace's "hair-flipping delivery virtually steals the movie."[5]

Mike McGranaghan gave the film three out of four stars, stating that "Jenna Fischer and Chris Messina do exceptional work here, making the characters immensely likable. You can relate to them even if you've never quite walked a mile in their shoes. The stars share a nice chemistry as well, creating a bond that brings real warmth to the story's emotional ending." McGranaghan noted that the film "wears its indie quirks on its sleeve a little too much. Some of those quirks feel forced, especially the stuff with Topher Grace's self-possessed creep."[6]


  1. ^ "Five Lessons in Passion from The Giant Mechanical Man and Lee Kirk". Huffington Post. April 25, 2012. 
  2. ^ "The Giant Mechanical Man: Domestic Total Gross". May 17, 2012. Retrieved 2012-10-27. 
  3. ^
  4. ^ "The Giant Mechanical Man". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved July 18, 2012. 
  5. ^ Anderson, John (April 25, 2012). "Review: "The Giant Mechanical Man"". Variety. 

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