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GasLand (2010)

Not Rated | | Documentary | 17 January 2011 (UK)
An exploration of the fracking petroleum extraction industry and the serious environmental consequences involved.

Director:

Josh Fox

Writer:

Josh Fox
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 9 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Josh Fox ... Self
Dick Cheney ... Self (archive footage)
Pete Seeger ... Self (archive footage)
Richard Nixon ... Self (archive footage)
Aubrey K. McClendon ... Self
Pat Fernelli Pat Fernelli ... Self - Resident
Ron Carter Ron Carter ... Self - Resident
Jean Carter Jean Carter ... Self - Resident
Norma Fiorentino Norma Fiorentino ... Self - Resident
Debbie May Debbie May ... Self - Resident
Mike Markham Mike Markham ... Self
Marsha Mendenhall Marsha Mendenhall ... Self
Dave Neslin Dave Neslin ... Self
Jesse Ellsworth Jesse Ellsworth ... Self
Amee Ellsworth Amee Ellsworth ... Self
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Storyline

It is happening all across America-rural landowners wake up one day to find a lucrative offer from an energy company wanting to lease their property. Reason? The company hopes to tap into a reservoir dubbed the "Saudi Arabia of natural gas." Halliburton developed a way to get the gas out of the ground-a hydraulic drilling process called "fracking"-and suddenly America finds itself on the precipice of becoming an energy superpower. Written by Sundance Film Festival

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Taglines:

Can you light your water on fire? See more »

Genres:

Documentary

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Connections

Featured in 50 Documentaries to See Before You Die: Episode 3 (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Trouringh
Written by Rutger Zuydervelt
Performed By Machinefabriek
Published by Rutger Zuydervelt
Courtesy Of Rutger Zuydervelt
See more »

User Reviews

 
"GasLand"
17 April 2010 | by colinrgeorgeSee all my reviews

Allow me to alleviate your initial trepidation. "GasLand" is not another documentary about the oil industry. You're on the right track, but first-time feature director Josh Fox has his sights set not on the gas you pump into your car, but the so called "natural gas" extracted from beneath your feet through the process of hydraulic fracturing known colloquially as "fracking."

Issue films, like "Food, Inc." or "An Inconvenient Truth" are notoriously dry, and Fox takes a welcome page from the Michael Moore book of documentary film-making, without the hard leftist political grandstanding. Rather, he adopts the format of painting himself a protagonist of sorts, though more justifiably than Moore. "GasLand" begins with an intimate history of the Fox family and their home, which lies just off of an artery to the Delaware River.

Positioned above the Marcellus Shale, a subterranean formation that stretches from New York through Pennsylvania to Virginia, and as far west as Ohio, the Fox home receives a lease offer for their land, a constituent slice of what energy companies have dubbed the "Saudi Arabia of natural gas," and so Fox embarks for some first hand reconnaissance on the communities already tapped by hydraulic fracturing, and his findings are nothing short of alarming.

The chemicals used in the fracking process seep into the soil and water supply, leaving many families with bizarre aberrations like flammable tap water. Uh oh. And as Fox makes his way across the country, into dozens of areas crippled by decade-past drilling efforts, he collects bottles of yellow-brown water like postcards in some macabre travel diary.

If there is a problem with "GasLand," it's that as a story, it becomes a little redundant as we watch family after family set fire to their sinks, but perhaps all the more resonant for it. From a film-making standpoint, the effect is marginalized, but in making something so shocking feel almost normal, Fox underscores the breadth of the issue. This is happening everywhere, and with such clear evidence of the immediate health hazards, the question is, why?

Fox's intimate approach and genuine stake in the issue is "GasLand's" greatest asset. He never has to rely on talking heads or PowerPoint presentations, and even at nearly two hours, the film is positively gripping. His story comes full circle as he returns home, faced with the "speculative" fracking of the Delaware watershed, which provides water to rural towns, suburbs, and cities. The implication is truly disquieting, and Fox can only ask that the public make themselves aware of the issue and take a stand before it's too late.

His film is an excellent place to start, and manages to entertain while outlining the severity of the problem, and to do so without an over-reliance on the pitfalls of so many of its contemporaries. "GasLand" is just about everything you could hope for from a documentary of its type, and its Sundance special jury prize is testament to its impact.

The film has yet to see general release, but a distribution deal is reportedly immanent. Interested parties can join the mailing list and watch a potent 15 clip at www.gaslandthemovie.com.

Ignore that initial trepidation. "GasLand" isn't another documentary about the oil industry, but it's just as important, if not more so.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 January 2011 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

GasLand See more »

Filming Locations:

Milanville, Pennsylvania, USA See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$2,641, 19 September 2010

Gross USA:

$30,846

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$49,428
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Color:

Color
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