New photos of Matt Damon and John Krasinski in 'Promised Land'

Could Promised Land be the Oscar contender that sneaks up and takes us all by surprised? Certainly the rather limited roll out next month puts it into the thick of the action, and with its emphasis on character and homespun family values it will likely turn a few heads. Not to mention it stars the always-likable Matt Damon, who created a stir at the exact same time a year ago with We Bought A Zoo.

Directed by Gus Van Sant and featuring a script by Damon and co-star John Krasinski, the story follows Steve Butler(Damon) a corporate salesman who arrives with his partner(Frances McDormand) in a small rural town hit hard by the economic crisis. Looking to take advantage by convincing the people to sell over their drilling rights, they run up against a grassroots campaign led by a local campaign organizer(Krasinski) and a schoolteacher(Hal Holbrook).

A batch of new photos have been released which show this is going to be a quiet, topical, conversation piece. So don't expect to see Damon running away from secret agents or squaring off with an angry bear. Promised Land hits the art house on December 28th...