keystone xl pipeline, screening January 22 Pasadena ca, socal 350
Tar Sands

‘Above All Else’: Fighting the Keystone XL in Texas


SoCal 350, Tar Sands Action SoCal, and WilderUtopia came together in Pasadena in 2015 for a fundraiser screening of Above All Else, a documentary film on the fight against the Keystone South. 

Above All Else - UKGFF 2015 Trailer

Above All Else Film: Who Will Stand in the Way of the Most Controversial Pipeline in the US?

John Fiege‘s “Above All Else” chronicles one community’s attempts to stop the next petrochemical disaster before it occurs. Benefitting from a sympathetic protagonist surrounded by colorful characters, the film outshines many eco-docs in its often dramatic account of their attempt to halt progress of the controversial Keystone Pipeline.  — John DeFore, The Hollywood Reporter

Looking to shed light on one small part of a larger hot-button environmental debate, documentarian John Fiege’s “Above All Else” chronicles a 2012 grassroots fight in East Texas to halt TransCanada’s controversial Keystone XL [Gulf Coast] pipeline. While the Obama administration continues to delay a critical decision on whether or not to allow the pipeline (which would transport oil extracted from Alberta tar sands to refineries on the Gulf Coast) to cross the U.S.-Canada border, the project’s opponents and supporters remain locked in a passionate battle.  — Geoff Berkshire in Variety

STORY: Keystone XL Texas Blockade: Defending the Land and Water from Tar Sands Oil

tar sands oil, keystone xl pipeline, Texas
Although the permit for the northern leg of the Keystone XL pipeline is still under consideration by the State Department, the southern leg of the pipeline with the support of President Obama, now carries corrosive tar sands oil from Cushing, OK to the Gulf Coast of Texas. For an inspiring period of 2012 to 2013, a group of activists took to the trees to stop the project, documented in the film “Above All Else.”

Above All Else – A Keystone XL Pipeline Documentary

The not-well-publicized story of how the Keystone XL (the Gulf Coast Pipeline or Keystone South) pipeline battle in East Texas built a community of resistance to the climate crisis in the US. In this firsthand account of activists on the front line of the climate fight, one man risks it all to stop the tar sands of the Keystone XL oil pipeline from crossing his land. Shot in the forests, pastures, and living rooms of rural East Texas, ABOVE ALL ELSE follows David Daniel, a retired stunt man and hire wire artist, as he rallies neighbors and activists to join him in a final act of brinkmanship: a tree-top blockade of the controversial pipeline. What begins as a stand against corporate encroachments on one man’s land becomes a rallying cry for climate protesters nationwide.

ABOVE ALL ELSE premiered at the 2014 SXSW Film Festival, with an international premiere at Hot Docs in Toronto. The film won Best North American Documentary at the Global Visions Festival and a Special Jury Prize at the Dallas International Film Festival.

Above All Else, documentary on the Keystone XL pipeline

STORY: Big Oil and Gas Resistance in BC: The Unist’ot’en Call to the Land

For a view into the oppressive machinations dramatized in John Fiege’s documentary, take a look at these videos from Tar Sands Blockade, made in 2012. Though the civil disobedience was eventually suppressed, trees bulldozed, land ripped up and pipeline completed, the sheer determination of the activists was a true inspiration.

Tar Sands Blockade: Stop the TransCanada Keystone XL Pipeline

Tar Sands Blockade: Stop the TransCanada Keystone XL Gulf Coast Pipeline

STORY: Keystone XL Dissent: Activists Speak Out for Clean Energy, Mother Earth

Keystone XL Pipeline Blockade

Fifty protesters converged to resupply the tree-sit near Winnsboro, Texas in 2012, facing significant oppression from police and security. From

Updated 26 April 2024

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