Tiny Couch Review

Promised Land, 2012

  • LeratoEnchanted
    Grandmaster Critic

    177 posts
    Signed up the 28/03/2017

    On 04/05/2017 at 17:08 Quote this message


    Promised Land sees director Gus Van Sant and Matt Damon reuniting after their coverted film Good Will Hunting. Damon takes the role of Steve Butler, an excellent salesman at a company that deals with natural gas mining. He is shipped off to yet another smalltown to convince the people of the particular agricultural farm that they need to sell their land as it sits on something valuable that they want to dig up- and the town's folk stand to win big in this too (which is ultimately a big fat lie). All sales tricks are pulled by Butler and his firm (behind his back after he drops the ball), and it's here that we get to witness a well-off sales guru having to deal with real people and real-life issues.

    Now, I watched this film because I like me a smalltown tale- the one random diner, the landscape, and the nosy folk and all their different experiences within the small space- but I've ended up getting a whole lot more than that out of this rather random story. It is indeed a bland topic, environmental awareness, but once you realise that you live in a real world that's affected by these very dire issues, you get to truly appreciate the plot and why Damon would take it upon himself to write and star in such a film (which is not entirely complementary to the rest of his catalogue).

    From the start, with the soft sounds of nature and cattle mixing into a lonely humming, when Butler rides into the town, we're immediately prepared for a simple film for simple folk, but these very sounds that we hear beg us to sit through this story as there is something urgent and affecting at hand which needs to be addressed.

    Promised Land is a lesson in humanity and morality, and serves to remind us of the environment surrounding all of us, the people in it and that money, although important, shouldn't be the motivation of every step that you take in life. Take a look around, enjoy the clear blue sky and the laughter of the children under it, and take a moment to do your part in taking good care of this little blue and green ball that we live on- which we so often forget needs our love and naturing.

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