Winner of the 2008 Independent Spirit Award “Truer than Fiction” Prize.
An ambitious west Texas farm boy with grandiose plans tires of living at the mercy of nature and sets out to find a life with more control. He heads to Austin where he becomes a real estate developer and skillfully capitalizes on the growth of this 1970s boomtown. At the peak of his powers, he transforms 4,000 acres of pristine Hill Country into one of the state’s largest and fastest selling subdivisions. When the development threatens a local treasure, a fragile limestone aquifer and a naturally spring-fed swimming hole, the community fights back. In the conflict that ensues, we see in miniature a struggle that today plays out in communities across the country.
“The kind of transformative viewing experience that has made the current period a golden age for nonfiction film.”
Robert Koehler, Variety
“The best film at the 2007 Sundance Film festival, hands down…”
Gavin Smith, Film Comment
“Laura Dunn’s The Unforeseen is a rare gift. Plainspoken yet urgent, it makes the wrist-slashingly depressing topic of real-estate development somehow transcendent. The Unforeseen is the movie An Inconvenient Truth wanted to be.”
Time Out NY
“One of the great documentaries of our time, The Unforeseen is a rapturous nightmare.”
Chris Barsanti, Film Journal International
Featuring interviews with Robert Redford, Willie Nelson, the iconic Texas Governor Ann Richards, environmentalist Wendell Berry and many others, THE UNFORESEEN is a powerful meditation on the American dream – on the destruction of the natural world as it falls victim to the cannibalizing forces of unchecked development. It is an intricate tale of personal hopes, victories and failures; and of debates over land, water and the public good.