May 17, 2013 9:30 AM

‘Mud’ oozes traditional qualities

The story of a sympathetic fugitive who forges a bond with two teenage boys near a mighty river down South, “Mud” is shot through with traditional qualities of American literature and drama. Jeff Nichols’ much-anticipated follow-up to his breakthrough second feature “Take Shelter” feels less adventurous and unsettling but remains a well-carpentered piece of work marked by some fine performances and resilient thematic fiber.

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