Metascore
38

Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 15 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 15
  2. Negative: 6 out of 15
  1. 50
    The movie is all the more artificial because it has been made with great, almost painful, earnestness.
  2. A stillborn rendering of Michael Chabon's first novel.
  3. 38
    You know a movie's got problems when the most memo rable thing about it is Sienna Miller's mustache.
  4. 38
    Almost nothing works in this movie.
  5. 30
    A clumsy and confused adaptation of Michael Chabon's 1988 novel.
  6. A coming-of-ager that nearly slaughters you by minute 30 with the relentlessness of its protagonist's voiceovers.
  7. Remember the final page of Gatsby, a real American tragedy, when the green light beckons us into an ever-receding future? Now that was a mystery. This is, well, Pittsburgh.
  8. Marries an unengaging love triangle to a flat visual style, nearly squashing the one good thing in it -- a scruffy, slouching performance from Peter Sarsgaard.
  9. 42
    Only Sarsgaard shows a pulse, creating a self-destructive, omnisexual rogue who, for all his faults, would probably be great company. The same can't be said for the film around him.
  10. Reviewed by: Dennis Harvey
    70
    The full warmth and idiosyncrasy of Chabon's original is missed in an adaptation that feels more impersonally observed. But Lawson's pic, (with the director making a left turn from prior feature "Dodgeball," which he says was a money gig undertaken to hasten this dream project) is entertaining and involving enough on its own terms.
  11. Reviewed by: Duane Byrge
    80
    In the film's most flamboyant role, Peter Sarsgaard's devil-ish charisma and cold bluster is frightening.
  12. Reviewed by: David Wiegand
    50
    Earnest but unconvincing film.
  13. Reviewed by: Jamie Tipps
    60
    Disappointed fans of Michael Chabon will have to watch "Wonder Boys" for solace, for The Mysteries of Pittsburgh boasts only one core mystery: how one can take such promising material and render it completely unmemorable?
  14. Reviewed by: Dan Zak
    50
    Pleasant-to-watch, easily forgotten drama.
  15. Reviewed by: Nick Pinkerton
    20
    Mena Suvari, as Art's vindictive ex-fuckbuddy, gives sole signs of life--Miller is so void of presence that one can forget she's in the movie from scene to scene.
User Score
5.1

Mixed or average reviews- based on 10 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 5
  2. Negative: 2 out of 5
  1. Dec 23, 2010
    6
    For the purpose of condensing the novel, I can understand why some of the choices are made. However, removing Arthur and consolidating him with Cleveland was questionable. Having read the book, it made me fairly uncomfortable, but somehow the ending came to practically the same conclusion minus perhaps a bit of emotion. Full Review »