Generally favorable reviews - based on 10 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 10
  2. Negative: 0 out of 10
  1. 80
    Happily, this structure is as mercifully loose as Penn's melodies are tight. [Aug 2005, p.113]
  2. Hollywood's fractured tale is underwritten by melancholy music that splits the difference between Mann's Bachelor #2 and Penn's MP4. [Oct/Nov 2005, p.138]
  3. 80
    Penn's precision in balancing melody, mood and texture throughout nicely counters the often-depressing subject matter. [#69, p.106]
  4. There's nothing as immediately or enduringly memorable as "No Myth," but it's a solid piece of work throughout.
  5. Penn’s most unified sounding record.
  6. When it works, like on the rousing, sentimental opener "Walter Reed," "On Automatic" and "Mary Lynn," Penn knocks the ball into the bleachers, but there's an over-flow of mid-tempo pieces about halfway through that bring the record to a standstill.
  7. The best songs here suggest an alternate universe where Bob Dylan and George Harrison agreed to collaborate full-time.
  8. Mr. Hollywood Jr., 1947 won't win any awards for innovation and probably won't yield any radio hits, but that's perfect. This album isn't about creating the perfect pop song, but about creating a story that bridges generations.
  9. Many of the record's vivid, detail-heavy vignettes come off like PBS docs: intriguing but a bit dull. [5 Aug 2005, p.67]
  10. As elegantly constructed as it may be, something's missing on Mr. Hollywood, Jr.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 18 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 13
  2. Negative: 2 out of 13
  1. WX
    Oct 28, 2005
    I'm sorry... was I snoring? MP has a way of slicking me to sleep with that wash of gloss he puts over his moldering style and rusted-out concepts. Thanks for the nap. Full Review »
  2. RandyC
    Oct 3, 2005
    May take a few listens to get one's head around some of the sophistocated rhyme schemes and the period theme, but Penn's typically brilliant melodic structure and hooky chord patterns captivate relatively quickly. Fascinating imagery and meticulous production makes it more than just another example of great Beatlesque pop, but it's that, too! Another masterpiece of "literate, thinking person's pop" from one of the leaders of that sub-genre; easily one of the top 5 albums of 2005. Full Review »
  3. DennisK
    Sep 27, 2005
    Fantastic songs, beutiful instrumentation. My one knock on this disc is that I think Michael would benefit from an outside producer (to help with maybe some sonic diversity, as well as the overall mix & mastering). That's really being nitpicky though, as this is an incredible album, both lyrically and musically. Full Review »