Urgent, heartfelt, and not-quite-as-predictable-as-you-think environmental rabble-rouser.
—Owen Gleiberman Entertainment Weekly
Though the film eventually caves to sentiment and stereotype, its alert performances and muted rhythms offer much to enjoy in the interim.
—Jeannette Catsoulis NPR
Krasinki's soft-sell script, lets the movie's ideas get absorbed without grandstanding or pretension. Its issues go down with a smile and common sense, which turns out to be exactly the right formula.
—Joe Neumaier New York Daily News
Promised Land is an involving and timely tale that explores the changing nature and complex challenges of rural life.
—Claudia Puig USA Today
The film has lots of small moments that make it a worthy effort.
—Marjorie Baumgarten Austin Chronicle
Promised Land presents its environmental concerns in a clear, upfront manner but hits some narrative and character bumps in the second half that weaken the impact of this fundamentally gentle, sympathetic work.
—Todd McCarthy Hollywood Reporter
There's also reason to worry when a simplistic movie like this one takes on an issue of overarching importance to the nation's future. The challenges presented by fracking are immense, and Capra-esque nostalgia isn't helpful.
—Joe Morgenstern Wallstreet Journal
Unfortunately, much of what's good about Promised Land is easily forgotten as a result of the preachy, impossible-to-swallow final 15 minutes in which the protagonist is subjected to character assassination, the screenplay turns into a sermon, and narrative intelligence is discarded in favor of a message.
—James Berardinelli Reel Views
More an argument than a fully fleshed-out drama ... The script is unconvincing; two key narrative twists, one related to the other, are deeply hokey.
—Michael Phillips Chicago Tribune
Left-wingers in the mainstream media - by which I mean me - are supposed to lap up a movie that plays to our farm-loving, tree-hugging prejudices. But even we know that well-meaning does not automatically equal good movie. Some organic life is needed. And the only crop Promised Land harvests is Capra Corn
—Richard Corliss Time