Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Movie Review: Mud

2013 is shaping up to be something special. So many good films have been released during this earlier half of the year, which is usually the doldrums of the cinema world, it's sort of amazing. Mud is the latest entry in the surprisingly awesome 2013 films list.

I shouldn't say I was totally surprised. The film's trailer was good left me pretty confident that I wouldn't hate the film...but I really didn't expect to be blown away like I was either. Matthew McConaughey plays the title character, an enigmatic drifter known only as Mud, but the film's true star is young Tye Sheridan. Sheridan made his acting debut in 2011's The Tree of Life. Some of you might remember how impressed I was with the cast of child actors in that film. Well, Sheridan continues his streak of awesomeness here in Mud. He and his co conspirator in the film, Jacob Lofland as his roughneck schoolmate "Neckbone," carry most of the movie's heavy lifting on their teenage shoulders and do a remarkable job.

Although marketed as a mystery/thriller, Mud is actually a coming of age film. Both Sheridan and McConaughey's character's are plagued with different iterations of the same problem. Sheridan is a naive young boy who must come to terms with the cruel realities of adult life, while Mud is a mentally stunted man child who's lifetime of reckless behavior is coming back to haunt him. The two have to grow up, and fast, in order to escape the very dangerous and heart breaking situation they find themselves in.

I can't go into much about Mud without slipping into spoiler territory but I will say this: it's a compelling film on almost every level. The entire cast is great, the musical score and cinematography are beautiful, and the story itself is enthralling. This isn't the most dazzling film in the world, but it's a fine example of good old fashioned story telling. Hats off to Mud's director Jeff Nichols, between this and his 2011 film Take Shelter, the dude is on fire.

Neckbone wears a bootleg Fugazi shirt throughout Mud, and the kid from The Place Beyond The Pines has a Misfits patch on his backpack toward the end of that film. Both these movies rule. Coincidence? I think not...


  1. The note at the end made me smile. Can't be coincidence.

    I actually thought this one would be an okay watch. Thanks for confirming. I think they're already giving it here.

  2. I've actually not even heard about this film until this review man but it sounds like it's worth a watch, I'll give it a look!

  3. I remember him from Tree of Life

  4. Nice review here. Nichols really is on fire, isn't he? Definitely check out his Shotgun Stories if you can. It's my favorite Nichols film.