Mud is something of an unconventional detective film. It seems that almost every character could be lying to its young heroes, and all of them are set up to let them down somehow. That some will seems inevitable, but trying to work out who will or wont before the fact is irresistable. Why would we want to? Well the stakes are high. The stakes are everything you learned about love in fairy stories. The film revolves around a young boy who believes that above the law, convenience, personal safety and the life you want to lead comes love. He is heroic in his naivety, but it is an impractical world view, and not one which everyone shares. It is something like mentioning the force in the Star Wars universe only to find that half the people in the room are looking at you blankly, as if to say “you believed that little green freak who says his sentences backwards?”, then when you try to levitate a peanut (I am assuming a bar setting here) to prove its existence someone casually picks it out of the air and eats it – their ‘thank you’ carrying with it an air of “we have seen this trick, and nobody cares anymore”. The thing is, this film is so well made, so well acted, so poised to make you feel something without branding it across the screen that you too want the world to just work because love exists in it. This film is about a boy realising that love isnt a fairytale, it doesn’t magic away problems and it doesnt stop people from hurting one another, but he does learn what love is, and this is why you’ll listen to every word, because the film could end with the whole bar laughing at your lame attempt to levitate a peanut, or it could end with you riding into the sunset with Princess Leia. 


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