Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Film Yap: Gasland

It’s scary knowing where you live may not be safe. The water you drink may be corrupted in some way. It’s gross, obviously, but it can also make you very angry towards whoever made this possible.

Documentarian Josh Fox became angry at the United State’s policies on natural gas drilling. It’s a personal story because it impacts his land in Pennsylvania that he has known for many years. If he sells his land to allow for hydraulic fraturing (or fracking) it can damage the city around him. He travels across the state to where this has already happened. There is he able to go to their running tap water, pull out his lighter, and see the stream ignite.

Fox continues to travel around the country finding more personal stories and starts pointing fingers to who is responsible for this. What he uncovers is very shocking and has plenty of important information. Not all of the interviews are as impactful as they could be, but that’s the problem when you’re being an attacking journalist.

The most effective information is seeing the political system work in favor for the natural gas drilling. Dick Cheney’s name comes up a lot during his film. It’s always discouraging to see the system be twisted to benefit something flawed like this.

Fox’s style can be a bit off-putting at times, but it gets the information really gets across. He treats it like a ragtime investigation at times but the lack of polish works in its favor. Recently the film garnished a bit of attention because the U.S. homeland security has placed actor Mark Ruffalo on a terror advisory list because of his outspoken support for this film. That alone deserves a short follow up on this problem.

The DVD has over 45 minutes for more footage that serves as deleted scenes. They are mostly just new coverage and extended interviews with some of the subjects.

Film: 4 Yaps

Extras: 3 Yaps


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