In many ways, “Promised Land” travels the same moral pathways that made “Up in the Air” so compelling. Just as that Oscar-nominated film delved into the complicated issues that arise when human values get mixed in with business, “Promised Land” cast a relatively even light over the unwinnable choice many farmers face when they have to decide between two evils.
Residents of a small community — the kind of Anywhere, USA, where there are stores that proudly boast they sell “Guns, Groceries, Guitars, Gas” — must decide whether to lease their land to a gas company for deep drilling because they need the money or reject the offer because of all the environmental issues.
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