A 90-year-old horticulturist and WWII veteran is caught transporting $3 million worth of cocaine through Michigan for a Mexican drug cartel.
Wisdom may certainly come with age. When someone lives a long-enough life, they have the opportunity to learn from successes and failures. They can make choices that are considerate, reflecting on what they have learned. Yet, wisdom is not guaranteed with age. There’s no grand ceremony where someone graduates to a higher degree of wisdom. There’s no certificate to indicate it. Wisdom does not always increase with the candles on a cake.
The Mule portrays age with a lack of wisdom. Viewers watch an elderly man—passionate for daylilies, gruff toward “the Internet,” and foreclosed on—get wrangled into transporting cocaine. And, his family has been affected by his unwise choices too, even before the drugs. Yes, The Mule portrays an elderly man transporting cocaine; yet, it is also the story of a man reckoning with his lack of wisdom, and maybe even gaining some.
The film’s style is often straightforward, with an interesting plot (which is based on a true story) and talented actors, but there are moments of clunky exposition that risk breaking some of the natural storytelling vibe. This could distract from some of the drama and tension, but the film mostly keeps its cool and frequently centers on spending time with the characters.
Though wisdom may not be guaranteed with age, The Mule shows that someone may not be too old to gain or express some.
Content has drug smuggling, strong language, sexuality, nudity, and more. Due to this content, The Mule is not Dove-Approved.