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Gus Van Sant, 2012

Focus Features

Gus Van Sant and Matt Damon serve up a battle for the hearts of Middle America, clapboard barns and all.

Affable shale gas advocate Steve (Damon) tempts struggling farmers with millions for fracking rights to their land. He’s doing them a favour, he argues.

“The only reason you’re here is ’cause we’re poor,” one replies.

John Krasinski shines as Steve’s eco-warrior nemesis Dustin, who outguns Steve with his PR.But who is really Mr Nice Guy? And which of them will get the girl (Rosemarie De Witt)? One of the two twists at the end delivers a shock, but the other cannot avoid being predictable.

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