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The Mysteries of Pittsburgh (2008)

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Based on Michael Chabon's novel, the film chronicles the defining summer of a recent college graduate who crosses his gangster father and explores love, sexuality, and the enigmas surrounding his life and his city.

Writers:

Rawson Marshall Thurber (screenplay), Michael Chabon (novel)
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jon Foster ... Art Bechstein
Peter Sarsgaard ... Cleveland Arning
Sienna Miller ... Jane Bellwether
Nick Nolte ... Joe Bechstein
Mena Suvari ... Phlox Lombardi
Omid Abtahi ... Mohammed
Keith Michael Gregory ... Keith
Ali Reed Ali Reed ... Female Book Barn Employee
James A. Harper James A. Harper ... Teen Book Barn Employee
Don Wadsworth Don Wadsworth ... Class Instructor
Christian Hand Christian Hand ... Punk Rock Bathroom Patron
Jarid Faubel ... Mohawk Man (as Jarid C. Faubel)
Tim Hartman Tim Hartman ... Restaurant Manager
Shannon Williams Shannon Williams ... Lurch
Seth Adams ... Feldman
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Storyline

Pittsburgh, coming of age in the 1980s. At the beginning of June, Art Beckstein calls this the last summer of his life - after which he'll work as a stock broker. Art's father is the city's mob boss, steering Art's life, judging his choices. At a party, Art sees Jane, smart, blond, lovely. They meet; she has a boyfriend. The next day, Cleveland, the boyfriend, pulls Art from work and the summer of adventures begins. Cleveland lives close to the edge; he's explosive, with hints of problems with local thugs. The triangle of friendship gets complicated when Cleveland disappears for a couple weeks. Can Art sort out his feelings as well as help Cleveland? Where does his father fit in this? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Sometimes life leads you to the most mysterious places.


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA | Bahrain

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 January 2008 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Usina de Sonhos See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$32,783, 12 April 2009, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$80,238, 10 May 2009
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Actress Sienna Miller also worked with Mena Suvari in the movie Factory Girl (2006). See more »

Goofs

When Art and Phlox are fighting after his first meeting with Cleveland, she says that it is past midnight. But when Art puts his hand to his face, you can see his watch is showing 8:15 as the time. See more »

Quotes

Jane Bellwether: And what does he do? What does your father do?
Art Bechstein: He manipulates Swiss bank accounts with money that comes from numbers, whores, protection, and cigarette smuggling.
Jane Bellwether: Really?
Art Bechstein: No, he's in finance.
See more »


Soundtracks

Mid-Summer
Written by Darrell Panza
Performed by Darrell Panza
Courtesy of Darrell Panza
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A good movie; lost
19 April 2010 | by artisticengineerSee all my reviews

This movie came so close to being a very good movie but fouled up at the end-leaving one to mourn what would have been a very good adaptation of a very good book.

It is the summer of 1983. A college graduate (Art) is trying to enjoy his last summer before he leaves Pittsburgh (his home) to become a financial broker. We find that his dad (fantastic portrayal by Nick Nolte) is an organized crime chief, of the local mob, and is proud of his son graduating and does NOT want his son to go into organized crime. The son takes a job for the summer at a local bookstore and is immediately seduced by his only slightly older female supervisor; an affair ensues. During this same period of time Art meets a stunningly attractive young blond (portrayed by Sienna Miller) who likes him; even though she already has a boyfriend (dude named Cleveland). The next day Cleveland, a tough biker type, comes to the bookstore and gives Art a deal "he cannot refuse"- which is a ride on the bike to a local abandoned factory site. At the factory site is a smokestack that still belches out clouds; even though the factory has been shut down for thirty years! Why? It is a mystery, a mystery of Pittsburgh. Why is does Cleveland turn to be actually friendly towards a potential rival? Well, that is another mystery of Pittsburgh.

The movie portrays the last summer of youthful abandon and care; set in surprisingly beautiful settings of a city that is reinventing itself from the traditional "smokestack technology" to a more "greener" environment. Yet, the problem with the movie is its unrealistic portrayal of male and female friendships. It was a very good movie; showing Sienna Miller, for example, doing some very good driving of golf balls at a party. Yet, this subplot never plays out- never explains why she is shown doing something so atypical. Loose ends, poor connections, double meanings that invoke something that is hard to believe even with the typical "suspension of disbelief" found at movies. All of these plot error and loopholes foul up the movie beyond redemption.


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