Wednesday, June 12, 2013

99% Mud

All Critics (139) | Top Critics (31) | Fresh (137) | Rotten (2)

There is an enchanted-fairy-tale aspect to Mud, but its bright, calm surface only barely disguises a strong, churning undercurrent.

A modern fairy tale, steeped in the sleepy Mississippi lore of Twain and similar American writers, and with a heart as big as the river is wide.

Nichols has a strong feeling for the tactility of natural elements-water, wood, terrain, weather.

Nichols takes his time with the story, dwelling on how the boy is shaped by the killer's tragic sense of romance, yet the suspense holds.

"Mud" isn't just a movie. It's the firm confirmation of a career.

"Mud" unfolds at its own pace, revealing its story in slivers. The performances are outstanding, especially from Sheridan, who plays tough, sweet, vulnerable and confused with equal conviction.

Mud is as beautiful to watch as it is to listen to, and feel kinship to, whether you're from the South or just Southern at heart.

In Jeff Nichols, America has a champion of the religious and working class. With the schism between the right and left in the U.S. growing ever larger... his ascent couldn't have come at a better time.

This is a film with a great naturalistic style and captivating performances and which does just about everything right.

This is American cinema at its very best as Huckleberry Finn meets Stand By Me.The two boys are terrific and McConaughey is sensational as Mud, dazzlingly frazzled as the hunted and haunted man on the run.

Up till just past the three-quarter mark, Mud is one heck of a nifty psychological fable.

The Southern-fried drama "Mud" is an electrifying example of what happens when you merge a crackerjack yarn with a very specific setting, and then pour on the heat with riveting performances.

McConaughey and Sheridan 's acting skills, as well as those of the entire supporting cast, make this movie better than it ought to be.

It gets under our skin because Nichols gives us time to come to know Mud's island like the places we knew as children.

As Mud might say, it's a hell of a thing.

The boys are so skillfully played that Mud also plays like cinema verite. Nichols' fluid camerawork suggests a documentary-style approach. That helps these young lads transform into flesh-and-blood characters who get our attention and support.

Sheridan, who played the Terrence Malick surrogate in The Tree Of Life, is terrific at conveying adolescent confusion with tiny squints and frowns, and McConaughey plays off him masterfully.

Carefully crafting films that fly just below the political radar, director-writer Jeff Nichols is slowly, but surely, reweaving the fabric of the American dream.

It's totally worth it to pay good money to see a good, little film nestled between theaters showing 'Iron Man 3' and 'The Great Gatsby.' (Complete Content Details for Parents also available)

This is a junior adventure story echoing Huckleberry Finn and Stand By Me, a tale which is in no hurry to unfold, but beautifully done, exquisitely performed, and filled with terror and wonder.

Beautifully acted, intellectually engaging, and dramatically satisfying, Mud deserves to rocket to the top of your must-see list.

Nichols is a gifted writer-director who knows how to get into the heads of his characters. And this film has superior actors who create people who are intriguing and hugely involving.

'Mud' is a standout film in this 'coming of age' genre mainly because of its central character, one tough, warm-hearted, stubborn little kid who believes in the power of love, above all else.

Other than pacing problems that needlessly stretch the film past the two-hour mark, 'Mud' slings the dirt and sweat with the best of them, as it both mourns and celebrates a way of life that's all but disappeared.

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