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Mystic River Reviews

Page 1 of 10
Ella Taylor
L.A. Weekly
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Where Lehane's novel seethes with emotionally charged subtext, Eastwood's workmanlike direction feels static -- fatally tasteful, embalmed in gravitas -- while his sporadic efforts at dramatic heightening come off as vulgar cliché.

Full Review Source: L.A. Weekly

October 9, 2003
Nell Minow
Movie Mom at Yahoo! Movies

It wants to be a big, serious movie. It has big, serious star power and big, serious themes. There are moments of power and flickers of meaning but it is ultimately hollow and unsatisfying.

| Original Score: C

October 8, 2003
Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Too depressing to fill audiences with delight, but it does seem to validate questionable attitudes, especially an indifference to the suffering of innocent people and a willingness to shoot first and ask questions later.

Full Review Source: Chicago Reader | Original Score: 2/4

October 24, 2003
Peter Sobczynski
Critic Doctor

'Mystic River' is an ambitious failure but it is, ultimately, a failure. It is a shame because there are a lot of little things that I liked about it even as the big things never quite added up.

Full Review Source: Critic Doctor

October 9, 2003
Staci Layne Wilson
Fantastica Daily

Up the Mystic River without a paddle is how I felt about halfway into this soggy Eastwood-meets-melodrama mess of a movie.

Full Review Source: Fantastica Daily

October 9, 2003
Keith Uhlich

And I take a page from Ann Miller and say it's all a load of horse-puckey.

Full Review Source: | Original Score: 1/5

October 2, 2003
Sean O'Connell

Slowly trudges through the motions of a tired whodunit, saving its dramatic juices for a blowout finale that never comes.

Full Review Source: | Original Score: 2/5

October 7, 2003
Phil Hall
Film Threat

Plodding, emotionally inert, overlong, badly framed, inappropriately scored and polluted with an ensemble who try to outdo each other with bad performances.

Full Review Source: Film Threat | Original Score: 1.5/5

October 2, 2003
Thomas Delapa
Boulder Weekly

Eastwood encourages Penn to overact, and Penn Method-ically responds with the enthusiasm of the amateur talents in Waiting for Guffman.

Full Review Source: Boulder Weekly

February 5, 2004
Joshua Tanzer

After many meticulously drawn connections, it's a disappointment to see most of our two-plus hours of careful attention thrown away.

Full Review Source: Offoffoff | Original Score: 2.5/4

October 3, 2003
Jurgen Fauth

Despite the faultless execution, this ultimately unedifying story of pointless murder is ... hopelessly contrived.

Full Review Source: | Original Score: 2/5

October 7, 2003
Tim Robey
Daily Telegraph

Deeply serious, sombre, long and humourless, it reeks of integrity. Eastwood's best since Unforgiven? Maybe, but it's the one I'd least like to sit through again.

Full Review Source: Daily Telegraph

October 19, 2003
Mike Sage
Peterborough This Week

Less a taut whodunit than a dreary who-cares-it, Mystic River is muddy-swamp-slow and about as appealing to look at

Full Review | Original Score: 2/5

January 17, 2004
Dustin Putman

A melodramatic murder-mystery that is as uneven as its outcome is anticlimactic.

Full Review Source: | Original Score: 2/4

October 9, 2003
Kevin N. Laforest
Montreal Film Journal

There is a solid story here, but it's weakened by heavy-handed dialogue, strained symbolism and subplots that don't got anywhere.

Full Review Source: Montreal Film Journal | Original Score: 2.5/4

October 10, 2003
Mark Palermo
Coast (Halifax, Nova Scotia)

Fiction doesn't survive on believability alone. The unilluminating Mystic River offers depression without insight; drama without purpose.

Full Review

November 22, 2003
Spence D.
IGN Movies

Despite all involved, Mystic River never quite equals the sum of its parts.

Full Review Source: IGN Movies | Original Score: 2.5/5

October 10, 2003
Alex Sandell
Juicy Cerebellum

There's no emotional connection to the characters. This is cookie cutter anguish meant to manipulate the gullible into believing that they're watching something meaningful.

Full Review Source: Juicy Cerebellum | Original Score: 4/10

October 8, 2003
Mark Dujsik
Mark Reviews Movies

An apprehensive cross between an elegiac tone poem of loss, an ever-twisting murder mystery, and a character study revolving around the regret of lost innocence, Mystic River tries to be all of these things and ends up falling short on all counts.

Full Review Source: Mark Reviews Movies | Original Score: 2/4

October 19, 2003
Ross Anthony
Hollywood Report Card

The performances are all good. However, the film experiences one coincidence after the other, manipulating its audiences rather heavy-handedly.

Full Review Source: Hollywood Report Card | Original Score: 2/4

October 6, 2003

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Top Critic IconTop Critic
October 17, 2003
February 7, 2004
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