Screened as part of NZIFF 2013

Mud 2012

Directed by Jeff Nichols

Mississippi teenagers on the run fall in with a charismatic fugitive. “Matthew McConaughey turns in his best performance and filmmaker Jeff Nichols (Take Shelter) captures a slice of backcountry soul.” — LA Times

USA In English
130 minutes CinemaScope / DCP

Director, Screenplay


Sarah Green
Aaron Ryder
Lisa Maria Falcone


Adam Stone


Julie Monroe

Production designer

Richard A. Wright

Costume designer

Kari Perkins


Ethan Andrus


David Wingo


Matthew McConaughey (Mud)
Tye Sheridan (Ellis)
Jacob Lofland (Neckbone)
Reese Witherspoon (Juniper)
Sarah Paulson (Mary Lee)
Ray McKinnon (Senior)
Sam Shepard (Tom Blankenship)
Michael Shannon (Galen)
Paul Sparks (Carver)
Joe Don Baker (King)


Cannes (In Competition) 2012; Sundance 2013

“A first-rate adventure film  about two teenage Arkansas boys – Ellis, who lives on a houseboat with his warring parents, and Neckbone, who is being raised carelessly in a trailer by his scapegrace uncle. They escape at dawn, hit the river, and discover a fugitive, Mud (Matthew McConaughey), living on an island in the Mississippi. Mud has long been in love with a white-trash goddess, Juniper (Reese Witherspoon), and the two cast-adrift boys, stirred by his situation and by their own need to know that love can last, struggle to get them back together… The writer and director, Jeff Nichols (Take Shelter), brings to the film [something a lot like Mark] Twain’s understanding of a boy’s best qualities – a love of adventure, instinctive loyalty, and generous chivalry.” — David Dendy, New Yorker

“McConaughey beautifully articulates with his honeyed drawl the very essence of a grizzled, determined romantic. It is the best work of the actor’s career, though virtually everyone in the film turns in sensitively drawn performances, particularly the boys.If you don’t know the name Jeff Nichols – if the writer-director’s singular voice, fierce and fearful in 2011’s Take Shelter, somehow 

eluded your notice – make note of it now… Nichols is made in America, a storyteller in the tradition of Mark Twain, uncanny in the way he understands human nature, inventive in spinning that into a movie. There is an ease with which Nichols pokes around in people’s lives, unearthing small truths in authentic ways. In Mud, it feels as if he’s caught a small slice of backcountry soul like a firefly in a jar.” — Betsy Sharkey, LA Times