The Twenty-First Century

Mud [2013]

mud-poster-405x600If you’ve seen Matthew McConaughey in “The Lincoln Lawyer” or even “Magic Mike” (he was the best thing about it), you know he’s an actor with huge potential. Need more proof? “Mud” , the new film from writer-director Jeff Nichols (“Take Shelter”) that keeps its distance from multiplex formula. Nichols has crafted a story that pulls you in the minute two young Arkansas boys decide to explore a deserted island one day. That’s when they find a boat stuck in a tree. Nobody knows how it got there but we do learn that somebody is living in it. That would be Mud (McConaughey), an outlaw hiding from both the police and some bounty hunters. He also tells the boys that he’s planning to meet the love of his life (Reese Witherspoon) on this island. That’s all I’m going to say about “Mud”, the better to let you get lost in its enveloping mystery. But what you should know is that the acting is top notch, especially McConaughey who has never been better. The movie also stars Sam Shepard, Sarah Paulson, Ray McKinnon, Joe Don Baker, and the amazing Michael Shannon, who’s been in all three of Nichols’ films. I realize that “Mud” may bot be everybody’s cup of tea, and Nichols is probably aware of that, but that’s what makes his films unique and unforgettable. I already can’t wait for his next project.

Rating: 3/4

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