SXSW Review: ‘Mud’ starring Matthew McConaughey

mud posterMatthew McConaughey has had such an incredible run of performances the past two years, hasn’t he? It started with The Lincoln Lawyer (go watch it) and Bernie, then continued on with Killer Joe, The Paperboy and Magic Mike. Who else in recent memory can you think of that has been on fire like he’s been?

Well, his hot streak continues with the absolutely wonderful, Mud.

Written and directed by Jeff Nichols (Take Shelter), the film is about two boys, Ellis (Tye Sheridan) and Neckbone (Jacob Lofland), who come across a guy named Mud (McConaughey) hiding out on an island in the Mississippi. Mud claims to be running from some bounty hunters after killing a man that harrassed his one true love, Juniper (Reese Witherspoon). Eventually, the two boys form a plan to help Mud rescue Juniper and escape the bounty hunters.

The film works for so many different reasons.

First of all, any movie that features Piggly Wiggly prominently in several scenes is alright with me. Secondly, Sheridan and Lofland are great young actors who are playing real kids, not Hollywood versions of what they think kids are. They are kids being kids. The film starts off with the two of them looking for an adventure, finding it and seeing where it takes them. Even when they are in the midst of some crazy, and sometimes potentially deadly circumstances, they are still kids and still care about the important stuff. “Did you touch her titty?,” Neckbone asking Ellis at one point. These two are so convincing that you wonder how much acting was actually involved but I’m going to love watching these two evolve and grow.

It’s also about loving a woman; finding out what it really is and how it can sometimes drive a man – both young and old – mad. It’s about love between fathers and sons (real fathers and father-like) and the lengths the dad’s will go to to protect and help their kids.

McConaughey, complete with chipped tooth and wild hair, spends 90% of the film stranded on the island fixing the boat with the kids. He just commands the screen with his presence. He’s always got a story to tell and most of the time, you’re wondering if it’s real or some made up craziness… but whatever it is, you can’t wait for another one to come out of his mouth. He could probably play this character in his sleep by now but he just went to work going so deep that what he’s done, mining the depths of this guy, is just out of this world great.

And if you’re a Michael Shannon fan, he’s got a very small role but also some of the funniest lines in the whole film.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Latest Videos

http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/audition-tapes-gerard-butler-aud.jpg
Audition Tapes: Gerard Butler Auditions for ‘Dracula 2000′
Check out Gerard Butler auditioning for the role of Dracula in the movie, Dracula 2000. The film, about a group of thieves who break into a chamber expecting to find paintings, but instead find Dracula himself, also starred Christopher Plummer, Jonny Lee Miller and Nathan Fillion. Bulter has some sweet rock star hair, huh?   [...]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/interview-matt-dillon-and-carla.jpg
Interview: Matt Dillon and Carla Gugino Talk ‘Wayward Pines’
FOX has a new limited-series that’s got a terrific cast and interesting premise. It’s called Wayward Pines and stars Matt Dillon, Carla Gugino, Melissa Leo, Toby Jones, Terrance Howard, Juliette Lewis, Tim Griffin and Shannyn Sossamon. The show, whose pilot was directed by M. Night Shyamalan, is about a Secret Service agent (Dillon) goes to [...]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/interview-wayward-pines-stars-ti.jpg
Interview: ‘Wayward Pines’ Stars Tim Griffin and Shannyn Sossamon on the Show, Their Characters and More!
Griffin and Sossamonwere at Comic-Con where they sat in on some roundtable interviews to talk about the show.
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/interview-m-night-shyamalan-talk.jpg
Interview: M. Night Shyamalan Talks ‘Wayward Pines’ and Why He Expanded a Young Actors Role on the Show
I talked to Shyamalan at Comic-Con in a roundtable interview where he talked about the cast, what he learned from working in TV and how young actor Charlie Tahan started out with a small part but as the story grew, so did his role.
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/interview-wayward-pines-producer.jpg
Interview: ‘Wayward Pines’ Producers and Writer Talk Casting and the 10-Episode Format
FOX’s upcoming limited series Wayward Pines looks very cool. The show is supposed to be very Twin Peaks-ish in tone which, just hearing that, definitely sparks my interest. The pilot was directed by M. Night Shyamalan and stars Matt Dillon, Carla Gugino, Melissa Leo, Toby Jones, Terrance Howard and Juliette Lewis and is about a [...]