The Place Beyond the Pines

The Place Beyond the Pines ★★½

The Place Beyond the Pines began extremely well and the plot went on brilliantly for the first two acts. But as soon as the third act sets in & the film takes a leap into the future, it eventually turned out to be a downhill from there. The direction is good though still many portions of the film could've been further tightened in the second half instead of letting it wander to no man's land. The ending also felt unsatisfactory & in the end, the only saving grace for this film turned out to be its performances.

Ryan Gosling stars as Luke Glanton, a locally famous motorbike stuntman who begins robbing banks in order to raise money for his wife & kid and Gosling's self-reserved, calm & subtle performance remained the most impressive amongst all even though he is on the screen for the shortest duration. Next brilliant performance comes from Bradley Cooper as a rookie cop named Avery Cross, who chased down Luke during one of his heists that lead to a catastrophic incident that comes back to haunt Avery decades later. Eva Mendes is also good while the rest chipped in with fine contributions.

Overall, as long as Ryan Gosling was present in the film, it had my attention. Even after that, the part of Bradley Cooper is exciting to watch before the film flashes forward by some decades which is where the interest starts losing its grip. The main theme of the film is "action has reaction" or karma or whatever you want to call it but it's not as deep a study of it as I was expecting. Still, The Place Beyond the Pines is worth a watch at least once, for Ryan Gosling's show-stealing performance & Bradley Cooper's improvement as an actor.

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