THE PLACE BEYOND THE PINES
BY CHRISTOPHER HASKELL
MARCH 30, 2013
Don’t let the two-hour and twenty-minute run-time frighten you away. Derek Cianfrance (“Blue Valentine”) uses every last frame of that run-time to create a masterpiece of drama. Ryan Gosling is easily one of the best actors of his time, making the persona Luke, a motorcycle stuntman who finds out he has a son from a one-time fling with Eva Mendes. There’s no surprise that Gosling knocks this role out of the park, but one surprise performance does come out of this film from Ben Mendelsohn (“Killing Them Softly”), who plays backwoods mechanic, Robin, who befriends Luke.
In an attempt to show Romina (Mendes) he’s taking the kid seriously, Luke ventures out with his “particular skill set” to rob banks to provide for his son, thus bringing in Bradley Cooper’s character, a cop named Avery. This epic genre spans multiple generations and brings a shattering performance from Dane DeHaan, for who I have high hopes for now. “The Place Beyond The Pines” is visually stunning, especially when venturing into the pines. It is also poetic and crosses through several different moral predicaments and social themes. Cianfrance brings to light both performances and stories, taking dramatic storytelling to an entirely new level.
March 29, 2013
(for language throughout, some violence, teen drug and alcohol use, and a sexual reference)