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3.7 out of 5 stars176
3.7 out of 5 stars
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29 of 31 people found the following review helpful
on 21 August 2013
A Place Beyond The Pines is a slow burning drama about love, fatherhood and consequences. The story is in three distinct parts starting with Ryan Gosling finding out he has a child. He travels with a fair, performing motorbike tricks. A year ago he had a fling with a local resident which resulted in his son being born. He doesn't know this until he returns with the fair and bumps into her again.

And so begins the catalyst of the story. The first part is purely setting up the scenario for the consequences of each characters actions to follow. Arguably the first hour is the most gripping and entertaining. Ryan Gosling is a force to be reckoned with and holds the screen with a dominance rarely seen these days. His dogged and cack-handed pursuit to be the best father possible leads him down the wrong road and he ends up robbing banks. He is someone you are willing to do the right thing but also someone you know is just never going to get off this road.

Ultimately his fate sets in motion the events of the rest of the film. We next follow Bradley Cooper's cop, Avery. This is where the film loses momentum and takes a distinctly different turn. This part shows a man broken by recent events and struggling to come to terms with his actions. When he realises that there are members of the force who like to dabble in some extra-curricular activities he decides to take this to his chief who promptly tells him to bury it. His faith in justice is waning and he decides to look out for himself and uses his knowledge and position to get himself promoted.

Bradley Cooper does well to present a man teetering on the edge but the story isn't as engaging. It drags a little and only picks up when Avery decides he has had enough and wants look out for number one.

The third part is a jump into the future. 15 Years to be exact. This is where the film really begins to lose its momentum. We now follow the exploits of both characters children and what happens when their worlds collide. It doesn't add anything and is extremely predictable. In fact the film could have done with 20 minutes being cut off the run time as it feels a little too long.

Overall it is a good solid drama and has some interesting moments. The first half is gripping and engaging and unfortunately the rest can't live up to that. Everyone involved gives it their best and the quality of the acting and style of the film couldn't be questioned. It just feels a little long winded and drawn out which is the reason it loses its punch.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 6 June 2013
Luke (Ryan Gosling) is a bad boy motorcycle rider who travels with a circus and has one night stands. Eva Mendes was one of those conquests. A year or so later they meet again. She has his child and a boyfriend (Mahershala Ali). Luke doesn't want to be an absentee father and forces his way into their life through gifts which he pays for with his newly acquired bank robbing addiction.

About 50 minutes into the film, we are introduced another main character, policeman Avery (Bradley Cooper). Then act three start about 40 minutes later (16years or so) with all the children grown and only Eva Mendes among the adults looking any older.

The ending is supposed to be heart warming, but doesn't make it. The film is long, but it is not deep. The action moves like a man running with one shoe nailed in place. I never felt for any of the characters. The scene with Bradley Cooper crying was just horrible. That was grade B acting topping off a stiff performance. Gosling on the other hand gave us a strong performance and Mendes was never developed. What was her problem? She wants him, she doesn't want him, she wants him, she doesn't want him.

It wants to cycle back, but then sputters, it doesn't take off. It might make do for a Redbox rental.

Parental Guide: F-bomb, after sex scene, no nudity.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 9 September 2013
I've read some reviews of `The Place Beyond the Pines' where people have either loved it, or wanted to turn it off after ten minutes. I have to say that I kind of agree with both sides. I wanted to turn it off after ten minutes, but decided to stick with it and I'm glad I did.

It's no big secret that the film is - loosely - split into three acts, each focusing on one person out of an overall story which covers all three. How much you like it will depend on which character you find the most interesting. Personally, I found Bradley Cooper's story the most engaging, therefore I enjoyed the film because of the middle segment, but everyone will have their own favourite.

Oddly enough, most people like Ryan Gosling's character/segment the best, but I found it a bit of a chore. I definitely think there's a good movie here, but most people will probably prefer one or two of the segments more interesting than the remaining one.

It's not a short film, so be prepared for a bit of a sit-in to fully appreciate it. Plus there are a few bits that slow the pace down a little. However, I felt - when the tension finally builds - that it's a pretty impressive (and even bold?) piece of film-making which deserve to be enjoyed (but possibly not by everyone).
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon 26 October 2013
"The Place Beyond the Pines" is a drama in three distinct parts that I thought didn't quite work. The film starts with the viewer following the tale of stunt motorcycle rider Ryan Gosling who,after discovering he has a son to a former lover , starts making bank robberies in an attempt to pay for his upkeep.However his ex girlfriend now lives with a more mainstream ,respectable man who wants to be the baby's father. After a dramatic event , the film then follows the story of Bradley Cooper's ambitious cop who reacts badly to getting embroiled in police corruption. This part of the story sees the film lose it's way a little. The final part of the movie moves the action forward by fifteen years and ends dramatically following an ill fated friendship between the teenage son of Gosling and the wayward teenage son of Cooper's cop (who is now incidentally running for District Attorney). I didn't really empathise with any of the main protagonists in this movie and the three parts of the film didn't quite gel together in my opinion. The film was also overlong ,running in at over two hours. I had hoped that it would end after an hour and a half after the second phase of the film ended. There is some decent acting to be seen , but "The Place Beyond the Pines" didnt quite hit the mark for me and it wont live long in my memory.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 15 February 2014
4 stars is maybe too much, but I acknowledge its ambition. A story of blood and fate that unfold over 3 generations across different family and situations, an invisible tie that bounds 3 lives whose common ground is a land where people are alone and individualism kills the spirit of individual himself.
Some great scenes, a great cast, maybe it's all too mechanic and cold, but it's definitely an uncommon movie.
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on 5 May 2015
Split into three parts The Place Beyond the Pines follows Luke (Ryan Gosling) as he turns to bank robbery in order to provide for his child, Avery (Bradley Cooper) a street cop torn between doing the best thing and the right thing and the aftermath of their intertwined lives 15 years later, seen through the eyes of their teenage sons (Emory Cohen and Dane DeHaan).

This film is not what I thought it would be - whilst it was good, with stellar performances from Gosling, Cooper and Eva Mendes, it didn't really deliver for me in the end.

The first hour is definitely the most gripping and entertaining with Coopers storyline and the storyline about both men's sons meeting 15 years later falling a little flat.

It became a little drawn out and predictable and there is really no specific conclusion. By the end it's hard to sympathise with any of the characters, regardless of the heavy backstory that has been set up for each of them.

It's worth a watch, but if there's a long list of films you're waiting to see, don't bump this to the top.
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on 10 January 2015
A great involving film this-three interwoven stories of characters that are forced to wrestle with their responsibilities and consciences, as the result of their own flawed actions. Good acting, story and direction make this a riveting and immersive movie-recommended!
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on 12 January 2015
I'd seen the mixed reviews and was not expecting to much as a result However, this film was more powerful than I anticipated.
It does make a conclusive whole. Well acted.
I would have hoped for a stronger and perhaps grittier ending.
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on 3 September 2015
Gosling has a short appearance in the film, nonetheless his part is excellent. You really want to screech at the screen - don't do it!!! Don't do what?

Buy the film, you will not be disappointed
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on 8 October 2015
A bit underwhelmed by this one, given all the great reviews. I thought it was great up to the incident in the house, but thereafter I found the story unconvincing and unengaging.
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