Tuesday, November 12, 2013
Completely drawn in by Mud's charm, the boys wholeheartedly throw themselves into reuniting the two star-crossed lovers, by gathering supplies to patch up the boat in hopes of ensuring Mud and Juniper's escape. As Ellis and Neckbone get deeper and deeper into Mud's sordid tale of doomed love, they blindly put themselves in harm's way, all in the hopes of helping their newfound friend finally find the redemptive power of love.
I wanted to watch this movie to see McConaughey stretch himself in a more substantive role that veered away from his typical romantic leading man roles of the past, and I wasn't disappointed. Mud was an entertaining and engaging film with a wonderful performance by McConaughey, who seems to have found a new found confidence in his acting and is no longer relying on his pretty boy looks to woo audiences. McConaughey gives a complex performance of a man beaten down by life, love and his own mistakes; a man who isn't clearly good or evil, but who falls somewhere in those grey areas.
The film also offers a memorable breakout performance by Tye Sheridan, whom I had never seen act before but who I learned was cast in the role of Ben Day in the film adaptation of Gillian Flynn's Dark Places. Tye movingly brings to life Ellis' idealistic innocence and hopefulness in his performance, and is even more compelling and believable in his portrayal of sad disillusionment in the scenes involving his parents broken marriage. Both child leads bring to life on the screen a Huck Finn-like adventure filled with daring, danger and self-discovery.
While Mud isn't on par with some of my recent movie viewings, like Captain Phillips or All is Lost, it was nonetheless a touching and engaging story with compelling and, in the kids, lovable characters, and believable and thought-provoking performances from the entire cast which definitely make it one to watch next time you're trolling your OnDemand movie queue.