Promised Land

6.61 h 47 min2013X-RayR
HD. An earnest corporate rep tries to buy natural-gas drilling rights from the economically hard-hit residents of a rural Pennsylvania town.
Gus Van Sant
Matt DamonJohn KrasinskiFrances McDormand
English [CC]
Audio languages
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Supporting actors
Rosemary DeWittHal Holbrook
Chris MooreMatt DamonJohn Krasinski
R (Restricted)
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4.4 out of 5 stars

876 global ratings

  1. 64% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 19% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 11% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 3% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 4% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

joel wingReviewed in the United States on July 25, 2021
3.0 out of 5 stars
Ending completelh predictable Twist on how it gets there
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Matt Damon and Frances McDormand go to a small town to convince residents to offer drilling rights for their natural gas company. It’s portrayed as a battle for the heartland of America. Damon runs into opposition from local science teacher Hal Holbrook and an environmental activist John Krasinski. Damon plays the frustrated energy man while Krasinki is the idealist and McDormand the realist. At one point McDormand gives Krasinski a donation hoping that will make him leave town. He takes the money and makes signs against McDormand’s energy company. The ending is completely predictable but they have a twist on how it gets there. That gave me mixed feelings about the movie.
2 people found this helpful
Jim Van CiseReviewed in the United States on June 11, 2013
4.0 out of 5 stars
Acceptance Process Sways Lowballing Salesman
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Fans of Good Will Hunting will see that Matt Damon can still argue convincingly. Damon plays Steve who is an aggressive, lowballing salesman for a natural gas company whose specialty is fracking. While traveling rural Pennsylvania to lease land, Steve begins to encounter resistance from a town divided before he even gets there. At times, the Steve character reminds me of the political candidate Damon played in The Adjustment Bureau. A young man fueled by advancement who displays what appears to be honest, small town values when put on the spot by public outcry. As soon as the town wants the presence of the fracking company to be put to a vote, Steve loses leverage again when an influential environmentalist (John Krasinski) arrives unannounced. The clash between the environmentalist and the salesman is the best part of the movie. While half the town is anxiously signing land contracts faster than they can buy a lotto ticket, the skeptics who have farmed the land for generations don't want to be the generation that destroys the habitat. Steve doesn't understand the stubbornness of the opposition while he clearly shows the he is hurting personally by their lack of acceptance. In a related, real-life story: On May 8, 2013, citizens of Youngstown, Ohio voted DOWN a ban on fracking (and any activity relating to shale drilling) by a margin of 57% to 43%. Youngstown is geographically centered between Chicago and New York City.
4 people found this helpful
Sam BellReviewed in the United States on September 24, 2021
4.0 out of 5 stars
Still pretty good.
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Matt Damon, Frances McDormand, John Krasinski and Hal Holbrook round out an outstanding cast. This film is pure story and acting. The words are the only action you'll get here but the story is really interesting. Just my opinion.
One person found this helpful
JohnAReviewed in the United States on February 21, 2014
5.0 out of 5 stars
What is the fracking truth?
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Sometimes it takes a good movie to portray the dangers of some of the new technologies that constitute the current bent of the "land". This movie doesn't disappoint and with Matt Damon staring, the dangers we face in fracking, when taken into account, are very destructible of our most precious resource, our precios land. If you think fracking is a great way to offset our dependence on foreign supplies, think again and move our country in the right direction, think again. We have the technology to do better but the big money cartels in the US and elsewhere would have you think differently and simply ignore the dangers. The "Promised Land" is a great movie describing both sides of this issue. When is the last time we have heard about fracking - well from the bully pulpit and that's all good news. The choice is ours to make and this movie is a good first choice that illustratively demonstrates that we need to change the direction we are heading for, before we lose our "Promised Land".
6 people found this helpful
ButchReviewed in the United States on April 3, 2015
5.0 out of 5 stars
Very true movie as to what the gas companies will promise.
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I live in Payette Idaho and this movie is a true example of what the gas companies can do to a community when they own the city managers. Idaho gave away the State to the gas companies in the form of legislation in favor of the gas companies. Most legislative members have leases with the gas companies. This movie shows the importance of hiring an Attorney before signing any lease. By the time new legislation is passed, the gas companies won't care as they will have their hold on the state. In the name of studies, the gas companies are doing millions of dollars in damage to properties in the State.
10 people found this helpful
Richard WhitlockReviewed in the United States on November 9, 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
Matt Damon, Oil Fracking, Hal Holbrook, romance
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Very enjoyable movie, excellent cast & story about fracking for oil deposits. Matt Damon has a "love interest" w/ a beautiful school teacher. Hal Holbrook is a H.S. science teacher who challenges the risky fracking leases that are being offered to this rural community. Holbrook is the oldest actor to have an Academy Award nomination (except possibly Robert Duvall). Holbrook was about age 87 when this movie was made.
5 people found this helpful
DominoReviewed in the United States on January 24, 2015
5.0 out of 5 stars
Matt Damon's Environmental Message Movie
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I enjoyed "Promised Land" way more than I thought I would. Despite which side of the fracking issue you are on, the movie manages to evaluate those sides fairly. It was interesting that Matt Damon's character, Steve Butler, was a proponent of fracking knowing Matt Damon himself most certainly isn't. The plot line was really clever and though the final outcome was mostly expected, you get there in a way that was not expected. Great casting, awesome scenery, superb acting particularly by Frances McDormand & Hal Holbrook (at age 88 nonetheless!) Grab the DVD and watch a good movie that will, if nothing else, open the gates of environmental discussion.
8 people found this helpful
D. ScottReviewed in the United States on April 17, 2015
5.0 out of 5 stars
Important Film
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What a wonderful movie! A character-driven film, with some of the most talented actors we have in the U.S. -- "Promised Land" explores the tensions that exist between the needs and desires of a dying agricultural community struggling to survive these transitional economic time and the exploitative corporations poised to manipulate their fears and insecurities. It's a story about the gas industry and the very real threat to our environment caused by the practice of tracking. It's about corporate manipulation and greed. It's about human beings trying to understand right and wrong in a world that seems to have forgotten those distinctions.
4 people found this helpful
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