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Promised Land (2012)

R  |   |  Drama  |  4 January 2013 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 28,031 users   Metascore: 55/100
Reviews: 99 user | 236 critic | 36 from Metacritic.com

A salesman for a natural gas company experiences life-changing events after arriving in a small town, where his corporation wants to tap into the available resources.



(screenplay), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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3 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
David Churchill
Carla Bianco ...
Michael Downey
Frank Yates
Drew's Girl
Drew Scott
Claire Allen
Garrett Ashbaugh ...
Basketball Player
Jericho Morgan ...
Jericho (as Jerico Morgan)


Corporate salesman Steve Butler (Damon) arrives in a rural town with his sales partner, Sue Thomason (McDormand). With the town having been hit hard by the economic decline of recent years, the two outsiders see the local citizens as likely to accept their company's offer, for drilling rights to their properties, as much-needed relief. What seems like an easy job for the duo becomes complicated by the objection of a respected schoolteacher (Holbrook) with support from a grassroots campaign led by another man (Krasinski) who counters Steve both personally and professionally. Written by Focus Features

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


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Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:

| |  »


Release Date:

4 January 2013 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Terra Prometida  »

Box Office


$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$173,915 (USA) (28 December 2012)


$7,556,708 (USA) (18 January 2013)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Originally, this movie was supposed to be Matt Damon's directorial debut. But due to short time to prepare for the movie and also some creative conflicts, Damon dropped out as the director (but remained as an actor) and Gus Van Sant came aboard to direct. See more »


Lafayette, Louisiana does not have a lighthouse, nor is it near enough to the gulf to have issues with salt water. See more »


Alice: Let me guess: 40, married, marketing, two kids.
Steve Butler: 38, stripper/waitress,but born to be a singer.
Alice: Fuck you, I'm a teacher!
Steve Butler: No, I was talking about me. You wanna see a dance? It's 100 bucks.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Through most of the end credits, the camera zooms out to a wide shot of the town where the film takes place. See more »


Referenced in Life Itself (2014) See more »


A Little Bit of Hurt
Written by David L. Graham (as David L Graham) and William W. Livesay (as William W Livesay)
Performed by Billy Livesay
Courtesy of Crucial Music Corporation
See more »

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User Reviews

Much better then I expected. Really makes you feel and understand both sides of the argument. I highly recommend. I say A.
21 April 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

"I'm not selling them natural gas. I'm selling them the only way they have to get back." Steve Butler (Damon) is a salesman working for Global, a natural gas company. Him and his partner travel to a small farming community to buy up property rights in order to drill. When an objection by a local teacher causes an enviormentalist activist to show up things get harder for Steve. This is a movie where the trailer doesn't do it justice. I wanted to see it based off the cast but it looked a little boring. While the movie is a little slow moving it is in no way boring. The writing and acting is very good and the "bad guy" that Damon plays really makes you feel for him and kind of root for him instead of the "good guy". While the movie does get a little political towards the end this is not a typical "enviromental/save the Earth" type movie. This movie makes you able to feel both sides of the argument and almost forces you to pick a side. I expected this to be boring with good acting going in. I got sucked in pretty fast and ended up really liking this much more then I thought I would. Overall, much better then expected and I highly recommend this. I give it an A.

25 of 29 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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