Unearthed

    • Jolynn Minnaar
    • South Africa, United States, Canada
    • 2014
    • 93 min
    • Dutch Premiere
    • Best of Fests
    The beautiful Karoo region of South Africa is home to just four people per square kilometer. The peace, quiet and nature seem endless, but the Karoo – which means “land of thirst” – faces serious water shortages and rampant unemployment. Perhaps fracking, which is a promising new way of extracting shale gas, can bring benefits to the region and its inhabitants. In whatever case, this is exactly what the South African government and the local head of Royal Dutch Shell are promising. Debut director Jolynn Minnaar was born and bred in Karoo. In her directorial debut, she goes on a personal quest to investigate the pros and cons. This takes her to a number of U.S. states where fracking is permitted, and to a whole range of experts and people who live close to fracking sites. Are the images of suddenly flammable tap water shown on American TV true? Or is fracking the safest way of extracting gas there is, as the power companies and politicians keep telling us? This is true in terms of what happens 5,000 meters (16,000 feet) belowground, but it doesn’t take into account the chemicals and waste disposal from drilling that are involved on the surface. Are the politicians aware of this? And why are several of the local residents, who at first were more than willing to share the shocking consequences of this method with Jolynn and the rest of the world, suddenly avoiding all contact with the film crew?

    Credits

    • 93 min
    • color
    • DCP
    • Spoken languages: Afrikaans, English
    • Subtitles in: English
    Director
    Jolynn Minnaar
    Production
    Saskia Schiel for Stage 5 Films, Dylan Voogt for Stage 5 Films, Stacey Keppler for Zootee Studios
    Executive producer
    Jolynn Minnaar for Unearthed Motion Pictures, Chris Nicklin for Sabido Productions, Zanele Mthembu for Sabido Productions
    Cinematography
    Jolynn Minnaar
    Editing
    Daniel Mitchell

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