Mud is a coming of age tale covering hope, love,and revenge. It shows how these feelings can drive different peoples lives and the consequences of their actions.
The marketing focuses on McConaughey’s star power (I hate trying to type his name!) but in reality the story is very much shared between him and Sheridan. Sheridan’s Ellis is one of the best written children I think I’ve seen. Issues at home allied with his confusing feelings about girls and what love is lead to a very conflicted young man, who isn’t afraid to act. Mud (McConaughey) is a drifter who comes into contact with Ellis and his friend. Their relationship grows and they both come to learn about more about themselves and the world around them.
Now, that could saccharine and cheesy, but a top-notch script and wonderful understated performances avoid that. Sheridan easily matches a resurgent McConaughey, and the slow pace of the film really draws you in.
The Ellis character took me back to younger times; struggling with his feelings towards girls and learning that as you grow up you have to deal with plenty of unpleasant feelings and decisions.
This film probably went under a lot of people’s radars, which is a real shame as it deserved a bigger audience.