Mud is a timeless adventure about two boys, Ellis (Sheridan) and his best friend Neckbone (Lofland), who find a mysterious man named Mud (McConaughey) hiding out on a deserted island in the Mississippi. Mud tells the boys fantastic stories about his life, including how he once killed a man in Texas and now vengeful bounty hunters are after him. He says he is planning to meet and escape with the love of his life, Juniper (Witherspoon), who is waiting for him in town. Skeptical but intrigued, Ellis and Neckbone agree to help him. But it isn't long until Mud's tall-tales come to life and their small town is besieged by bounty hunters out for blood. (Gary Reber)
Special features include commentary with Writer/Director Jeff Nichols; four featurettes: A Very Personal Tale: Writing And Directing Mud (11:37), The Arkansas Ensemble: The Distinctive Characters And Cast Of Mud (HD 07:11), Southern Authenticity: Shooting The Real Arkansas (HD 06:14), and The Snake Pit: The Slithering Costars Of Mud (HD 01:30); upfront previews: and an UltraViolet digital copy.
The 2.39:1 1080p AVC picture exhibits a raw, natural, non-glamorous appearance that projects a realistic essence of derelict house boat life along the banks of the Mississippi River. The color palette is naturally hued with accurate densities without over-saturation. Fleshtones are perfectly toned and realistic. Contrast is well balanced with decent black levels and shadow delineation. Resolution is excellent, especially during close-ups of facial features, hair, clothing, and object texture. This is a visually engaging, naturally raw exhibition of rural life that perfectly complements the storytelling. (Gary Reber)
The DTS-HD Master Audioô 5.1-channel soundtrack is low budget and generally focused frontal with forward, non spatially integrated dialogue that often sounds disconnected to the scene. At other times, the dialogue is nicely integrated. Intelligibility is sometimes blurred. Atmospherics and sound effects are frontal focused, with occasional directionality, but surround presence is subtle. The music score effectively ties it all together, but surround immersion is subtle as well. This is a generally mediocre sonic experience but serviceable in its support of the storytelling. (Gary Reber)