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FrackNation
Year:
2013
Country:
USA, UK, Poland
Genre:
Documentary
IMDB rating:
6.0
Director:
Ann McElhinney, Phelim McAleer
Mark Ruffalo as Himself (archive footage)
Craig Sautner as Himself - Resident, Dimmock, Pennsylvania
Mike Uretsky as Himself
Bryan Swistock as Himself
Carl Shaffer as Himself
Marian Schweighofer as Herself - Dairy Farmer
Karl Canfield as Himself - Dimock, Pennsylvania, Dairy Farmer
Terry Engelder as Himself
Karen Radwanski as Herself - Resident, Dimock, Pennsylvania
Bruce Ames as Himself
Bill Graby as Himself
Josh Fox as Himself
Ernest Majer as Himself
Storyline: FrackNation follows journalist Phelim McAleer as he faces gun threats, malicious 911 calls and bogus lawsuits when questioning green extremists for the truth about fracking. Fracking is going to make America one of the world's leading energy producers and has become the target of a concerted campaign by environmentalists who want it banned. In FrackNation McAleer travels across the USA and Europe to uncover the science suppressed by environmental activists and ignored by much of the media. He talks with scientists and ordinary Americans who live in fracking areas and who tell him the truth behind the exaggerations and misrepresentations of anti-fracking activists.
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Reviews
Science trumps Emotion
Phelim McAleer in "FrackNation" provides a well researched, thorough, entertaining, and scientific rebuttal to the emotional pleas provided in Josh Fox's "GasLand."

Opponents of hydraulic fracturing (aka fracking) would have us believe that the human push-and-pull of fueling civilization versus conserving the biosphere is a left-versus-right or climate change supporter versus denier phenomenon; in fact it is a conflict of science versus emotion. This is the genius of "GasLand": we want to get emotionally angry over a cause. "FrackNation," however, tosses some ice onto those smoldering embers with cold facts.

Nothing is more damaging to the platform of "GasLand" supporters than Fox's multiple refusals to answer pointed questions from McAleer:

McAleer: "Isn't it true that decades before fracking started, that there was methane in the water there?" (regarding the flammable tap water)

Fox: "Can you identify yourself?"

McAleer: "My name is Philem McAleer."

Fox: "Okay, where are you from?"

McAleer: "I'm a journalist."

Fox: "Journalist from where?"

McAleer: "From Ireland."

Fox: "From Ireland?"

McAleer: "Yes. Isn't it true..."

Fox: "You're concerned about the fracking going on in Ireland?"

McAleer: "No, I'm concerned about the accuracy of the documentary."

Fox: "You're a journalist for what paper?"

On the surface, a cause's champion refusing to answer the opposition is unsettling but it goes further; Fox's thinly veiled attempts to impugn the credentials of McAleer--even his nationality--and his absolute refusal to respond to challenges to "GasLand's" documentary authenticity leave the watcher mentally ticking off points in McAleer's column. But there's more.

At another point, Fox repeatedly refuses to engage MacAleer in conversation at an event held at the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles. Eventually McAleer and his director are ejected from the event... scientific dialog indeed.

Through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request, McAleer obtains video from the US Government's Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the largest environmental regulatory body in the world. In this video, the Sautner family--the champions of "GasLand"--were presented with the results of an EPA sampling of their well water, demonstrating that the well water was not contaminated. The Sautners react with emotion: the wife storms out, the husband demanding the results are false, and the EPA representative stating "we found no contaminants."

Scientific and methodical thinking people of the entire political spectrum are forced by this film to consider the evidence of the hydraulic fracturing issue and see the opponents reacting with emotional pleas and the supporters providing clear and well documented science.

--oversoul
2015-04-26
Excellent documentary
I have taken years' worth of courses at my University on energy resource processing and climate change. I have studied the topic of fracking extensively and exhaustively. GasLand promotes so much garbage disinformation, bad science and hogwash propaganda, that I don't even know where to start.

Let's start by saying that one dangerous chemical used in fracking is dihydrogen monoxide which is a primary component of rocket fuel and a high-temperature welding gas and kills hundreds of people each year (including children) through accidental ingestion of large amounts. Dihydrogen monoxide also reacts vigorously if exposed to any electrical current, creating two highly explosive gases (through electrolysis), potentially blowing up your home! You do not want your children anywhere near this … if you think lighting a methane fire in your faucet is bad enough, just wait.

But I was just bulls**iting you! Because dihydrogen monoxide is the chemical name for water (H20). Hundreds die each year by drowning, and electricity splits the H(ydrogen) and O(xygen) apart; liquid hydrogen is pure rocket fuel, and pure oxygen is used in welding. Electrolysis is the process of splitting the H and O, two highly combustible gasses, one of which can suffocate you, and both of which (if combined) can drown you.

So just as with my example above, GasLand puts together a neat bag of bulls**t, makes it sound scientifically accurate, and stupid people buy it.

There are notable risks associated with fracking. But if we de-blow those risks back into proportion, using scientific and reasonable analysis, we find that the risks of fracking are in fact much less then that of oil drilling. Oil drilling has caused, and currently poses much more serious risks (Deepwater Horizon, Valdez spills ring a bell?) that don't seem to be serious enough for an OilLand documentary. Moreover, wouldn't we want to be self-sufficient in energy production and break the chains of our middle East reliance?

NO I do not work for an oil company, but YES I have spent hundreds of hours studying the subject, for which I can speak for hours on … so contact me should you want an in-depth discussion of the risks (abnormal seismic activity?) …

I'll end with a FUN FACT:

Did you know Global Warming was changed to 'Climate Change' after a team of researchers found that people were skeptical of 'Global Warming' but believed in 'Climate Change' – so politicians were instructed to replace 'Global warming' with 'Climate change' in speeches, and the trick worked. People supported climate change but not global warming, even though they're identical terms.

So what gas companies need to do is slightly modify their extraction method and declare "Were not going to engage in fracking any longer, it's too dangerous … were reverting to 'standard natural gas drilling' from now on."

Case closed.
2014-08-20
These filmmakers are notorious anti-environmentalists
Read about the filmmakers' political history before accepting this pseudo-documentary at face value. "Not Evil, Just Wrong" (2009) gives climate science the same general treatment, and "Mine Your Own Business" (2006) downplays the risks of mining and chemical effluent.

FrackNation continues the same right-wing theme of "Man can do no harm to nature," often based on Creationist ideology and a willfully weak understanding of science. The glowing IMDb reviews for this propaganda piece make me suspect shills were sent to bump up its ratings.

Some of the biggest flaws in this film are: A) the claim that fracking of this type has been around for many decades, ignoring the much newer addition of horizontal drilling and mystery chemicals, B) the notion that cement well casings will always be poured perfectly and maintain their integrity indefinitely (casing failures can exceed 6% early on), C) the lies about methane never being disturbed by fracking, as if it must already exist in the water table beforehand, D) the dismissal of physical impacts on the land and airborne fumes from wellheads, E) trivialization of massive water usage, with billions of gallons PERMANENTLY LOST from the fresh water supply via injection wells which are also prone to toxic leaks and sinkhole formation, plus poorly treated wastewater that ends up in ponds and rivers.

The general tone of this pseudo-documentary is to sneer at environmentalism via the appeal of "heartland" folk who are often poorly educated science-deniers. Being "down to earth" doesn't make one a fracking expert, and money buys opinions when one's land becomes valuable. This film seems to have been made largely as an attack on "Gasland" (a partly biased film) but this one contains far more slick propaganda, for example never quite admitting that fracking DID contaminate water in Dimock PA and other towns. The sheer number of gas wells in progress assures more contamination via statistical odds.

Fracking may not be 100% bad, but I'd rather err on the side of known risks than pretend it causes no harm. People who claim this film is "balanced" are being very devious.

Look up search terms like "methane migration" and "wastewater disposal" in conjunction with fracking. Claiming that it's a benign process is akin to government assurances about "safe" radioactive fallout from old nuclear tests (note that fracking wells can also bring up radioactivity from deep in the earth). Concerns about fracking must not be marginalized for the sake of money and continued energy gluttony.
2013-08-31
Might be biased, but still has useful information
Technically, I'm not sure whether my review contains spoilers or not, so I labeled it as such just to be safe.

What is interesting and informative about this documentary has nothing to do with whatever scientific information it may purport to present, nor even its coverage of its topic, fracking. You can discount everything they actually SAY or claim with respect to the makers and participants in the movie "Gasland" to absolute zero, and STILL this movie proves, beyond debate, that those members of the anti-fracking crowd that were involved with the making of that film are a pack of unmitigated liars.

When it comes to a contentious and complex issue such as fracking, discerning the technical and scientific truth is an almost impossible task for the general public. Virtually EVERYONE speaking publicly or presenting themselves as an authority on the subject has some ulterior motive. Even worse, we probably don't have enough long term/widespread data to know with certainty what the ramifications may be. Even those who aren't actively working to be deliberately misleading may simply be misinformed or be operating from unknowingly incomplete data.

Yet, even if you know NOTHING about this subject, and suspect EVERYONE on both sides of motive-based lying and distortions, you can still recognize certain kinds of falsehoods all by themselves.

For example, in "FrackNation", one claimant that was touted in "Gasland", and who is suing for contamination of well water, is interviewed and claims, ON CAMERA, that the EPA didn't find that their water was clean after all, and then makes vague threats about being armed. Subsequently, video is shown, obtained through the freedom of information act, that that is EXACTLY what the EPA determined. That's just a bald faced lie, no matter what ANYBODY, on either side, may claim about anything else.

Other contributors to "Gasland" are caught lying about their qualifications, falsifying information, distorting presentations, omitting relevant data, and committing other forms of fraud, and are even convicted in court of doing so. This is displayed on camera, and you are free to ignore anything and everything that Phelim McAleer, or anyone else, says; this evidence is incontrovertible and is just there for you to look at.

The makers of both films, "Gasland" and "FrackNation" may certainly have their own agendas. Nobody here is aglow with the light of pure truth. The information in "FrackNation" may or not be scientifically correct. Fracking may be the end of the world or the ultimate energy savior of mankind, or somewhere in between.

But one thing is established and set in concrete: many of the makers/contributors to "Gasland" are a pack of liars that cannot be trusted at all. If there is ANY truth in "Gasland", it is entirely coincidental and accidental. They tar themselves on film far beyond anything one could accuse them of.

You will have to look farther than "Gasland" or "FrackNation" to find the truth about fracking.

The truth about the makers of "Gasland"? Well, that's right here in moving pictures for you to see for yourself.
2014-06-26
unconventional wisdom
When I happened across this movie 20 minutes into it, I thought, "How clever of Big Energy, hiring this humble filmmaker to create pro-fracking propaganda for them." But the longer I watched, the clearer it became to me that McAleer wasn't advocating fracking, just pursuing facts and not pushing anything. I came away with a realization that yeah! there really is another side to the "conventional wisdom." I'm guessing the majority of people who have even heard of fracking are against it because of what they've been fed by "green" types helped by media that are more lazy than biased. I hope McAleer's message will somehow reach people whose attitude is, "Don't confuse me with facts."
2013-07-18
"The truth will set you free."
I had heard some of the buzz from the Anti-fracking movement, but I never had any real data on which to form a personal position on the issue. It was pure luck that I stumbled upon this film at all. I have watched other documentaries about religious, social and political issues. In my opinion there were only two that did not show an obvious bias. This film is one of them. Ben Stein's documentary expelled is the other. I thought the director did a fantastic job of presenting the facts of the case without an agenda. He was not the main focus of the film. It felt like he was just a facilitator. He allowed the data and the people involved to speak for themselves. The best part: he provided real verifiable data from independent sources. Real honest investigative journalism. Very refreshing.
2013-02-02
Fracknation is fracking lame
I've watched hundreds of documentaries and this has to be the most blatant example of an attack-docu. Let's be honest about the topic, 99.9999% of people don't know anything about this but it seems that a lot of people in this movie and it's counterpart are able to speak on the topic in great depth. Bringing Russia into this documentary as a main topic is pretty weak in general, almost desperate!

This movie is so bad it's worth watching. I don't give a frack about either side of the debate but this movie makes me want to be anti- fracking.

Frack this piece of fracking ****.
2015-01-10
A fair look at a VERY unclear topic
I watched this documentary and I was very impressed with the depths he went to to interview people that just didn't seem to matter to the makers of Gasland. I think if you were going to do a film about a subject that you would talk to all of the residents of the area you were talking about. After watching the film, I still have a lot of questions, for both sides. I think if you watch this with an OPEN mind and are open to reason and logic, you can't help but form some conclusions from it. I do find it disturbing that the producers of Gasland would NOT talk to him at all. I urge everyone to watch this and form your own opinion. He did do quite a bit of research you didn't see in Gasland.
2013-01-26
Excellent documentary that does what a documentary should: shine a light on truth
When Michael Moore filmed Roger and Me, I applauded him for standing up to big corporate America. Ironically, the tables have completely turned. Documentarians who once were interested in uncovering truth and righting wrongs have now turned to pushing agendas and twisting facts. The latest efforts by such filmmakers as Michael Moore, Al Gore, and the newest member of the club, Josh Fox, show that one-sided analyses, coupled with big Hollywood production values, are enough to brainwash masses of people.

Ironically, the tables have completely turned. Those who once fought for speaking truth to power are now the power--and they want to bully and silence filmmakers like Phelim McAleer. While they claim the speak for the common man, McAleer literally went to the common man to fund this project through Kickstarter, and the people he interviews in the film are all farmers and landowners who have been silenced by big environmental activist groups, helped by big Hollywood and a left-wing media.

McAleer's statistics are well-researched, beautifully presented, and provide a much-needed "other side of the story" to a debate that's been dominated by loud and intolerant voices.

I won't go so far as to say it's completely balanced or unbiased, but it does do the thing that great documentaries do: showcase the hypocrisy and the intolerance of the left and bring to light those whose voices have been silenced by the conspiracy of NGOs, politicians, and media working together. And it shows what a hypocrite Josh Fox is, a coward who can't take in as he dishes out.

It's really a shame that these same mindless robots and useful idiots are going to come to IMDb and downvote this movie and this review. Don't pay attention to whatever rating you see. This documentary is, bar none, the best I've seen in the last year and one of the top 10 I've seen in my life. If you're interested in understanding the truth beyond all the obfuscation and lies promulgated by the anti-fracking fanatics, you owe it to yourself to watch this.
2013-01-25
Factual and eye opening for those who really want to know and understand fracking
Nearly three decades ago I was an administrative manager for a large, international drilling company. After a few years I was hired as the general manager of a small 3 rig company based in Oklahoma. We drilled oil and gas wells in Oklahoma, Texas, and Kansas.

So I consider myself to be extremely knowledgeable about fracking because EVERY well we drilled was fracked. I don't know of any wells in the area in which we were drilling that were not fracked. We drilled wells from 3,000 feet to 10,000 feet and larger companies with larger rigs drilled far deeper.

And I am not aware of even one instance that ground water was affected or dangerous "fumes" being released to the atmosphere except in the event of an accident or equipment failure. And those were fixed within two to three days at the most.

If you drive through Oklahoma, Texas, and Kansas right now - nearly 30 years after we drilled in those areas - you would have a difficult time locating producing gas wells. The land was taken care of when it was drilled and completely brought back to it's original condition (or better) save for a few dozen square yards where the wellhead is actually producing before it goes into a system of underground pipelines.

There are no ground water problems; cows drink from all the ponds, streams, and lakes; and 99% of the ranchers and land owners are still farming and ranching on family lands partly because of the revenue they receive each month from those wells.

So this film was RIGHT ON THE MONEY! The science that was investigated and the logical fact checking of the anti-fracking groups couldn't have been more accurate.

One thing that was mentioned in the film that should be constantly advertised is that from the surface to the total depth of the well is lined by 3-4 layers of pipes and linings all layered with high density cement to prevent any possibility of ground water contamination.

NO ONE gets their drinking water, livestock water, or any other water to consume from the depths these wells are being drilled.

And fracking takes place in only the producing zones of the well which is, in most cases, thousands of feet below the water table or aquifer.

This is a film that is clear and honest.

It deserves widespread public viewing.

And finally the question should be asked: Who wins and who profits if fracking is somehow banned in the United States?

That is a subject for another documentary and I hope Phlem and Ann begin an earnest search for those answers. I will be the first in line to donate to another Kickstart fund to make it happen.
2013-02-03
Download Documentary FrackNation movie USA, UK, Poland with english subtitles DVD-rip mpeg4 avi & mp4, download FrackNation (2013) 1080p h264 mkv, iPhone xvid mov & mpeg4 mp4, Mark Ruffalo, Craig Sautner, Mike Uretsky, Bryan Swistock, Carl Shaffer, Marian Schweighofer, Karl Canfield, Terry Engelder, Karen Radwanski, Bruce Ames, Bill Graby, Phelim McAleer, Josh Fox, Ernest Majer, Ron White.
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