PROMISED LAND (15)
D: Gus Van Sant
Focus Features/Participant Media/Image Nation (Chris Moore, Matt Damon & John Krasinski)
W: Matt Damon & John Krasinksi
DP: Linus Sandgren
Ed: Billy Rich
Mus: Danny Elfman
Matt Damon (Steve Butler), John Krasinski (Dustin Noble), Frances McDormand (Sue Thomason), Hal Holbrook (Frank Yates), Rosemarie DeWitt (Alice)
A strange film to review, since the enjoyment factor all depends on where you stand on the shale fracking debate.
Matt Damon plays a PR man for a multi-billion dollar energy conglomerate who is sent to a small town to convince the folk to vote yes on a motion to bring in the drills.
He faces opposition from a small group of the population and then fuel is poured on the fire in the shape of a young, cocky environmental protestor who turns Damon into public enemy number one.
Unfortunately, this is the problem the film has. The protestor is so abhorrently unlikeable that you find yourself favouring Damon's side, only for an unconvincing ending in which Damon switches sides and presents a moral to the story that we should all appreciate our roots and expel the satanic dollar.
All of the performances from an incredibly talented cast are good, but the ecological sermon needed a lot of tweaking.