Matthew McConaughey plays the title character in "Mud." (Jim Bridges/Roadside Attractions)

Matthew McConaughey takes another star turn as Southern culture gets a fresh, fair examination in "Mud," writes Post movie critic Ann Hornaday. See what else our critics had to say about this week's new movies.


"[In] Jeff Nichols’s richly observed coming-of-age fable, McConaughey injects a note of danger into a bayou noir story of youthful ad­ven­ture that manages to be lyrical and sobering at the same time." -- Ann Hornaday

"Pain and Gain"
"The whole thing is played for laughs that almost never come." -- Michael O'Sullivan

"The Big Wedding"
"Sadly, superior talent can propel a movie only so far. Bad scripts beget bad movies, even when four Academy Award winners are involved." -- Stephanie Merry

"Gimme the Loot"
"Filmed in a style that recalls the spontaneity and careful composition of Spike Lee and Martin Scorsese, 'Gimme the Loot' possesses every potential pitfall of a mannered, pseudo-tough urban crime flick. But [writer-director Adam] Leon subverts that expectation, making his lead characters less miscreants than mischief-makers, who mask their fears and continual failures of nerve behind profane bravado and unconvincing swagger." -- Ann Hornaday

"Arthur Newman"
"Despite the worthwhile questions it raises about how well we ever know ourselves or those we grow to care about, 'Arthur Newman' is a lot like its protagonist: admirable in a quiet way but not quite capable of living up to its lofty ambitions." -- Jen Chaney

"Blancanieves" 3 stars
"'Blancanieves' is a silent, black-and-white homage to the films of yesteryear. ...  Wordless performances can be risky, and not just because a modern-day silent film will inevitably draw comparisons to “The Artist.” (Rest assured, this movie feels like an entirely different entity, both darker and more dynamic than the 2011 Oscar winner." -- Stephanie Merry

"No Place on Earth"
"'No Place on Earth' stirs the emotions as we watch the survivors and their young descendants unearth and then rebury — almost literally — the memories they have kept hidden and the miracle that kept those memories alive." -- Michael O'Sullivan

"Hava Nagila: The Movie"
"Flawed, but not enough to undo its infectious joyfulness." -- Stephanie Merry

"The Angel's Share"
"The actors give off an unstudied quality, as many, including the tremendous [Paul] Brannigan, are first-time film stars. It works, right down to the characters’ thick brogues." -- Stephanie Merry

"Filly Brown"
"A routine music business cautionary tale, the film shuffles its decks ever so slightly by casting a Latino actress as its lead, but doesn’t do enough to shed the exasperating confines of the star-is-born genre." -- Sean O'Connell