5 January 2013 6:00 AM, PST | SmellsLikeScreenSpirit | See recent SmellsLikeScreenSpirit news »

The talk of fracking in Gus Van Sant's Promised Land is much different than the futuristic expletive used in Battlestar Galactica. This fracking is a colloquial term used for hydraulic fracturing. An oft-debated technique used for the extraction of shale gas, the main question regarding fracking centers around whether the economic return is worth the environmental risk. Van Sant's narrative pits two representatives of a seemingly all-powerful natural gas corporation against a podunk environmentalist. Each side tries their darndest to ingratiate themselves within an economically poor, agricultural community in Pennsylvania. The two representatives from the natural gas company -- Steve (Matt Damon) and Sue (Frances McDormand) -- even go as far as buying country folk disguises from the local Guns, Groceries, Guitars and Gas shop in the hopes to gain access to the hundred of millions of dollars worth of shale gas that is presumably stored deep beneath the »

- Don Simpson

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