Review: Mud (2012)

mud poster

“There are fierce powers at work in the world, boys. Good, evil, poor luck, best luck. As men, we’ve got to take advantage where we can.”
– Mud

SYNOPSIS: Two young boys encounter a fugitive and form a pact to help him evade the vigilantes that are on his trail and to reunite him with his true love. – via IMDB


GRADE 7The movie was pretty good, and I liked how the story came together and was presented, though at times I thought that it was massively underplayed and sometimes far too slow on the presentation of events. There are also a few things that are just left open and unexplained, so there is an air of confusion to it. I do like the drama aspect, as it was executed very well. Ellis’s family problems and the effects thereof could visibly be seen in his actions, and it is easy to see how Mud could have gotten him to do anything (not necessarily knowing what he was up to, that is). That Neckbone eventually relents and joins Ellis on the journey is well done, too. McConaughey delivers a great performance as Mud, and it is easy to see how two young boys would be drawn into his terrible mishap. Michael Shannon’s role was so minor, and it was a pity that he was not utelised more, he is a very good actor that can carry a story. I really feel for Ellis, being at that point in life where you are not yet an adult though you are no longer one hundred percent a child anymore. Ellis hits his pubescent age and has a bad time – his parents are getting a divorce, he is supposed to be moving to town and his life as he knows it is coming to a close. He throws himself into helping Mud in a way to look for answers to himself, to prove that not everything is broken with the world. I enjoyed how a lot of the movie was spoken, so it was more down to characters and their actions as opposed to big action scenes and losing everything to CGI and massive effects.  The film does keep you engaged. Maybe I just like a drama like that, but it was lovely how it was put together, how the boys were adventurers, how Neckbone eventually got on board with the whole Mud thing, as well as Mud’s whole story. The boys were prepared to help him and while they were at it they learned a lot of new things about people as well as some things about themselves. I enjoyed this, though I do not think that it was that fantastic as people made out, though do not mistake that for me saying it was bad or substandard, I really did enjoy it.

33 thoughts on “Review: Mud (2012)

  1. a 7/10 seems fair to me. I really really loved this, and gave it top marks but I also understand that the hype might have reached ridiculous proportions. It was a slow-going, quiet movie but in some ways that added more to the proceedings (to me it did). It was also a beautiful film. Also agreed about Michael Shannon, he was so minor in this they may as well have cast someone else


    1. The hype really did get a little bit insane. I can handle slow going, I like it when a pace is very gradual, but there were a few places where this was just too slow, if you know what I mean. Yeah they really could have done more with Shannon, the man is bloody brilliant, too good for such a minor, overlooked bit part.


    1. It was a good movie, and I can see why it is so popular, though I think the hype killed it a little for me, I expected a little more. I really, really loved his character, he played it so damn well.


  2. was there a lot of hype over this movie? All I read about it, was that it wasn’t any good. I thought it didn’t do well.

    Glad it’s good though, the premise sounds like it would be a movie I would enjoy.


    1. I really didn’t read anything about that. Every time I opened something it was about how amazing this film was, and everyone was having such a blast about it.

      It is a sweet movie, and a decent watch. I do hope that you enjoy it when you get around to it! 🙂


      1. @Zoe: I guess in India it didn’t make an impression because the reviews were so so, and I think the movie came and went in a jiffy.


      2. I don’t know about India’s press, but it has a 98% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes, for what that’s worth. It is certainly critically acclaimed.


  3. Everyone seems to be in love with this… and that usually pushes me away… you also say that this is very dialogue heavy?? Ugh….


    1. It is good but not grand. Lots of dialogue but not overkill at all. Then again, that never kills a movie for me. Not sure how big a fan you would be of this, you should check it out sometime if you come across it.


  4. Oh no, only 7/10? I really really like this one, definitely one of the best of the year. But I suppose it’s not perfect, for one I’m baffled as to the significance of Michael Shannon’s character towards the end. Matthew was terrific here though, hope he gets a nom for this though most likely he’d get it for Dallas Buyer’s Club.


    1. It was good, but not great, though I did enjoy it, but not as much as I hoped. Yeah Shannon really could have been utilised more. I liked the little bit he did, but he was underused.


  5. Nice review. One of my favorites this year and I loved the Huck Finn-feel to it. McConaughey has been on a roll as of late and I can’t wait to see his next performance.


  6. Thanks for a great review. This movie was not released in the city where I am so I still haven’t seen it, although I have heard nothing but great things about it. If you liked McConaughey in this one, you should watch the Lincoln Lawyer if you haven’t seen that yet. 🙂


    1. 🙂 Always a pleasure! I did see the Lincoln Lawyer and thoroughly enjoyed it. I am currently reading the book, so far so good! 🙂 Thanks for the recommendation!


  7. Nice one Zoe. I really enjoyed this myself but it’s not the masterpiece that many made it out to be. The performances were outstanding but it became formulaic towards the end. 8/10 from me.


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