Mud - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Mud Reviews

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June 18, 2018
In what is definitely my favorite film of 2013 so far, writer/director Jeff Nichols overshadows his brilliant cast with what is clearly an emotional purging of love lost, heartbreak and growing up. Nichols has only done 3 films, all well-received, and he was only born in 1978. "Mud" is the story of a teenager, Ellis, magnificently played by young Tye Sheridan, who wanders off with his friend Neckbone in a boat on an Arkansas outlet of what appears to be the Mississippi River. They travel to a deserted island and encounter Matthew McConaughey who, as Mud, recruits them in helping save the love of his life from the retribution of her former lover's family. This almost coming-of-age story unravels further to reveal that Ellis himself is beginning to learn his own lessons of love and betrayal that apparently seem to have never been learned by Mud, some 30 years older. While seeing love fall apart all around him, Ellis struggles to decide what love is and how much he can trust the fairer sex since every influence around him indicates that he shouldn't, no matter how deeply he wants to believe in it. Ellis and Mud parallel each other throughout the film, which is a treat as the viewer. The acting is just so good, the story is so well constructed and the film is directed in such a raw manner that all the elements came together and made this a nearly flawless piece of art. McConaughey shows why he deserves the opportunity to do more than your everyday rom-com or adventure piece. With both "Bernie" and "Mud," he is quickly becoming one of the best out there. Tye Sheridan steals the show, though, and is worthy of Oscar consideration.
March 30, 2018
Mud is a strange and enigmatic coming-of-age story about two boys who find a strange man living on an island by himself, hoping to reunite with his long-lost love, Juniper. With the help of these two boys, he hopes to reunite with her, while the boys themselves deal with their own personal lives that are far from ideal. There's a lot of intrigue and mystery contained within this strange story, whether it be Mud's background, or the lives of the boys themselves, such as Ellis, whose parents are going through a divorce. There's a lot that goes on in this film as it explores the backgrounds of its troubled characters, providing a deep gaze into the lives of the characters. I found it to be a compelling, well-written, well-acted film that will keep you on the edge of your seat as you try to figure out their lives. It's easily one of the most under-appreciated films of the decade.
March 21, 2018
A wonderful film with an intriguing, exciting story. But it is the beautiful atmosphere of American Southern river life shining through the story which turns this film to pure gold.
March 17, 2018
One of the major components of the so-called 'McConaissance', Mud makes full use of its cast, especially its child stars, and crafts a heart-warming tale of outcasting and adolescence. It's so refreshing to see a film where conflicts arise from characters misdeeds and personality flaws, rather than contrived scenarios or ridiculous misunderstandings. There's a genuine honesty to the way the characters speak, and the youngsters direct approach to their bizarre friend brings out the truth in a way which is realistic and believable. Tye Sheridan has gone on to do great work in films like Joe and The Stanford Prison Experiment, and he really shines here in his first leading role, capable of embodying a young adult with all the angst and confusion you'd expect. It lacks an assured pace to warrant many repeat viewings, but it's a highly competent work that doesn't try to say too much, but never shouts its points so loud that they become inaudible.
February 21, 2018
you gotta see this..


It scores highly and stands alone on its eerie perspective on conveying a tale to the viewers along with its all mixed up genre feature that hardly settles on an answer. Mud is profoundly written, explicitly executed and has some genuine dreadful characters that are given enough room to justify themselves on the plot offering enough range for the actors too to perform majestically. Jeff Nichols is brilliant in both of his job i.e. writing and directing and has an amazing cast star like Matthew McConaughey who is supported by brilliant kids and Michael Shannon and Sarah Paulson that helps him sail off this boat safe and easy to the shore. Mud; as said earlier, doesn't fit in a genre and hence helps the script to be unpredictable till the end leaving the audience mesmerized but has a bit of a trouble on its pace which is quite slow and it factors in a lot considering it is of more than 2 hours.
January 23, 2018
Englishes with a good sense of entitlement get in trouble but are still entitled to everything they find, and the people they find as well. This reminds me Le petit Prince, when the fox asked to be apprivoisé. Here, Mud and the two boy apprivoisent each other in the most natural way. The film is really holding water up to the end. However, relationships holding water since long time are them starting to sink. Add to this some mysteries, love, non-love, and a murderous vengeful gang and there is the recipe for the evening watch. Good evening.
January 17, 2018
my god!!! what a movie Matthew Mcconaughey is an icon man....
½ December 19, 2017
What a beautiful and well acted film. Wow!
August 18, 2017
GREG: (Greg Smith, Founder of Agile Writers of Richmond, VA) Scott, we just saw Mud. The new Matthew McConaughey movie.

SCOTT: (Dr. Scott Allison, Professor of Psychology, University of Richmond) Yes we did. And there was so much mud I needed a bath when I got home from the theater.

GREG: We meet young Ellis (Tye Sheridan) who lives on the Mississippi River in Arkansas with his parents. They aren t getting along and divorce is imminent. Ellis and friend Neckbone (Jacob Lofland) rise early one morning to boat out to an island where they have found a houseboat lodged in a tree - apparently left there after a recent flood. They plan to make a treehouse of it only to find that a mysterious man is living there - Mud.

SCOTT: The boys begin doing favors for Mud, such as bringing him food and delivering notes to his girlfriend Juniper (Reese Witherspoon) who is staying at a hotel in town. They discover that Mud is in trouble with the law and make the decision to help him reunite with Juniper and escape down the river.

GREG: Ellis is an idealist. He believes in true love and wants to help because he sees that Mud has the same beliefs. Ellis defends the honor of an older girl that he wants to date. He doesn t understand why anyone would give up on true love. In Mud he finds a kindred spirit.

SCOTT: Greg, Mud is a terrific movie that showcases the heartache of growing up. We witness a teenage boy losing innocence but gaining wisdom. He starts out trusting everyone, and he gets burned, but he also gains understanding. We watch him learn painful life lessons, especially that love and family are precious and fragile. The movie is rich in symbolism. The river serves as both a barrier and a symbol of flight from danger. Juniper, Mud s girlfriend, has birds tattooed on her hand and wears a bird on her necklace. Mud s boat is airborne, perched in a tree. Hiding on an island, he is separated from the world. Only after Mud lowers the boat into the water does he finally re-connect with the world, drawing close to Ellis, Juniper, and his father-figure, Tom (Sam Shepard).

GREG: I really enjoyed this film. We follow Ellis through the childhood drama and disillusionment of watching his parents break up. He wants to cling to the idea that with love anything is possible. And time and again he learns the harsh lesson that love just isn t enough. And that not everyone shares his core belief that true love is the most important value.

SCOTT: Yes, and it s Ellis s transformation that makes this movie special. A few weeks ago we called After Earth a nice coming-of-age story, but Mud has so much more depth and nuance to its storyline. Although the character of Mud is not the central hero, we are drawn to him. There are plenty of snakes in this film, and they appear in both reptile and human form. At first we wonder if Mud himself is a snake in the mud or if he is someone who can somehow rise above the other snakes ready to pounce on him. We are initially appalled by his exploitation of Ellis s kindly innocence. Mud eventually redeems himself by performing a courageous, selfless act.

GREG: I agree, Scott. Mud represents Ellis s childlike beliefs extended into the future. Mud is what Ellis will become if he can t temper his teenaged idealism. The big question is will Ellis be broken by the events in his life or will he cling to a core belief that will turn him into a victim. Mud (the movie) is a very sensitive and thoughtful treatment of childhood love and heartache. But it s not overly sentimental. The children in the story are strong and independent but still naive. I m reminded of 1986 s Stand By Me. I felt that the story and direction were very strong and I give Mud 5 out of 5 Reels. We are also witness to a dual-hero story of a pair of characters who share the same belief in true love. Both heroes follow an arch and are transformed in the end. Not only do I award Mud 5 out of 5 Heroes, but I also nominate it for our Hall of Fame. Movie: Heroes:

SCOTT: I m in agreement that Mud is one of the best films of the year. Matthew McConaughey turns in an outstanding performance as a man on the run, and young Tye Sheridan hits just the right notes in portraying the painful loss of youthful innocence. This is an inspiring hero story, with Ellis passing through all of the stages of the hero s journey. He encounters a father figure in Mud, a love interest who teaches him an aching lesson, and has a sidekick in Neckbone. Ellis s na ve view of the world gets him into trouble but also endears him to everyone around him, and the friends he has cultivated eventually save his neck. By the movie s end, Ellis has been transformed, possessing an adult understanding of both the joy and sadness of human relationships. It s a beautifully crafted hero s journey. Greg, I m with you in awarding Mud 5 Reels out of 5, and 5 Heroes out of 5. I second your nomination for this film entering our Reel Heroes Hall of Fame. Movie: Heroes:
½ August 11, 2017
Mud is pure Excellence. Matthew Mcconaughey's strong performance is definitely one of the best things about this film. The acting all across the board is very good. The story itself is very good too. I love the way that the story starts out somewhat dismal but in the end it's uplifting without being unrealistic or watered down. I also love the way it displayed the day to day lives of boys growing up in the Deep South (I relate a lot to both Ellis and Neckbone). It also pictures a fairly accurate depiction of life in the South in general. Great film with an original story.
½ August 9, 2017
Interesting and well-acted.
August 8, 2017
Matthew McConaghuey is Perfection in this role as the one trying to leave with his love and find a better life. But everything that goes on is Sad, exciting, and a lot of pain is suffered by the evil that tries to destroy him.
½ July 18, 2017
Although not resolved in the most subtle of ways, Mud is an immensely satisfying and completely original adventure with great leading performances from Tye Sheridan and Matthew McConaughey.
July 11, 2017
Really a brilliant film. McConaughey deserved at least an Oscar Nomination for this.
July 2, 2017
Mud is directed and written by Jeff Nichols, and it stars Matthew McConaughey, Tye Sheridan, Jacob Lofland, Sam Shepard, and Reese Witherspoon in a coming-of-age drama about two boys that explored an island, and they come across a boat that they want to get, but they realized that someone was already living in the boat, and when they found the person that owns the boat, he makes a deal with the kids to help him out with some stuff by bringing him food or delivering a letter, than he gives the boat to them. I'm always looking for rewatching films like this because what I enjoyed about it the first time, I wanted to see if it's still there, so for something from Mud, it's still there. Matthew McConaughey gives one of his best performance as you don't really know about whether he's someone to trust or not, and Tye Sheridan is absolutely fantastic as a child actor that I'm glad he himself in some future film roles like the X-Men films. The writing felt very real from the conversations that that the kids have that they probably do talk like this in real life, and while I've never read any Mark Twain books as he have said that he's inspired by those books, the story of the film definitely felt like a Mark Twain one, and it's a simple, but effective, story of it. When it becomes a love story, it's really a relatable one towards boys that want to do everything right to the girls that they like, even if the girls don't feel the same way towards them. The characters are three-dimensional, and it's never boring with a relaxing pace in this. When it gets to the climax, that's when the movie starts to get investing because you know a lot about the characters, and the closure that they have is very satisfying that fits the characters. Mud is a drama masterpiece to me that I couldn't find any flaws in this, and I'm glad for that also.
June 30, 2017
One of the best small films
June 29, 2017
A well-made movie with deep characters, a well-written script and great characters.
½ June 18, 2017
After seeing Loving I thought, "I have a feeling Jeff Nichols is an acclaimed director because of his other works", not that Loving is bad, it just felt like a standard rights drama film (though I do appreciate it for be as true to the real story as possible). After seeing Mud, I was right. This is a really, really good film. I think McConaughey gives a great performance in this movie, its well shot, well-directed, heartwarming, and also the kid who plays Ellis does a really good job here.
June 15, 2017
it explores the life of a boy and his view towards the relationship and love perfectly elaborated indie film (NOT A ROMANCE FILM)
June 12, 2017
It´s so catching at the beginnig and every single second is getting better, you really feel connected with Mud.
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