David Wingo


Growing up on a riverbank in the rural outskirts of Arkansas is equal parts bleak and beautiful. The stark landscape can feel confining, but when it is all you know (or the only place you want to be) it is easy to find the beauty in the things that surround you. And that is how we find Mud (Matthew McConaughey), a charismatic drifter with an eye for this beauty, but one who ends up in the exact place he should not be. Mud is a story of redemption, but Mud himself is driven by another emotion: love. And it is his love story that captures the attention of two young local boys, Ellis (Tye Sheridan) and Neckbone (Jacob Lofland), who end up learning more about themselves while trying to help Mud escape his own troubled fate. The film’s music, created primarily by David Wingo and Lucero, creates a captivating duality of sounding both ominous and playful (much like Mud himself.) Wingo, who also created the music for director Jeff Nichols last film, Take Shelter, clearly knows how to bring Nichols’ vision to life and make his worlds feel like an interesting combination of tangible and magical elements. Ben Nichols, whose track “Shelter” also appeared on the Take Shelter soundtrack, returns with two new blue-grass infused songs, “Davy Brown” and “The Kid,” which bring texture to Ellis and Neckbone’s world while tracks like Wingo’s “Juniper” add that sense of magic.


We learned not too long ago that David Gordon Green has made a movie that’s so low budget and has so much indie cred, nobody even heard about it until it was already finished shooting. It’s called Prince Avalanche, it stars Paul Rudd and Emile Hirsch as a couple of road workers painting the lines on isolated and little used roads, and it’s a remake of a 2011 Icelandic film called Either Way. Since most everyone is in agreement that the David Gordon Green who makes small, experimental films is the best David Gordon Green there is, said news was generally accepted as being good news. But things get even better. Now there’s word that this new film will be bringing back memories of Green’s earlier, indie-r work even more so than we may have imagined. Consequence of Sound is reporting that Austin, Texas band Explosions in the Sky have agreed to make some time to score the film once their current tour wraps up in August. The guys from Explosions in the Sky and Green have all known each other for quite a while, as he’s already used a bunch of their music in his earlier works All the Real Girls and Snow Angels.


The main deception of Jeff Nichols’ apocalyptic drama Take Shelter is that its plotline can be summed up so quickly and cleanly, though the film itself neither passes quickly nor lets anyone get away cleanly. And that’s meant as a compliment to the film (and Nichols and his entire cast and crew), one that mines a simple idea to its most fulfilling (and often unsettling) ends. The film stars Michael Shannon as Curtis, a family man who starts having disconcerting visions of nature gone mad (black rain falling from the sky, clouds that roll and swirl too swiftly, birds dropping dead at his feet), and responds in the only way that seems wise – he builds a souped-up fall-out shelter for his wife and daughter. As the layers of Curtis steadily get peeled back, it becomes obvious that it’s not just this singular (and relatively new) fixation on the end of the world as we know it that’s driving the man, as Curtis’ creeping concerns that he’s actually going insane have a real world root. His mother is crazy, and in a basic, hard-and-fast way. And she has been since, well, since approximately the same age Curtis is now. The delusions and nightmares and visions and creeping paranoia would be enough to make anyone worry, but with a possible genetic predisposition to psychosis, it’s a wonder that Curtis hasn’t broken down sooner.

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