9 January 2017 | littleging12
One of the Most Underrated Movies of All Time
"The Place Beyond the Pines" is the second feature film with the director/actor pair of Derek Cianfrance and Ryan Gosling. The two together are a two man wrecking force who show resemblance of a DiCaprio/Scorsese dynamic. In this film, they tackle an ambitious, emotional and completely original tale about fathers and sons, sins of the father, generational consequences, and how one moment can send shockwaves lasting a lifetime.
The movie is broken into three acts, each as compelling and unpredictable as the one before it. The film centers around three main characters, somehow, all connected to each other. It stars Ryan Gosling, Bradley Cooper and Dane DeHann as the leads. Ryan Gosling channels the brooding reticence of his unnamed badass from "Drive" and the cool swagger of Tyler Durden from "Fight Club." Bradley Cooper displays a lot of versatility as he plays a nervy rookie cop. Some other actors who shine here are Ben Mendelsohn, Mahershala Ali, Bruce Greenwood, and Ray Liotta (with his signature menacing intensity). The actors really own their roles and allow for the viewers to connect with the portrayal of their sympathetic characters. The only problem here is that the newcomer actors (Dane DeHaan and Emory Cohen) don't carry their act as effectively and emotionally as Ryan Gosling and Bradley Cooper did.
The story here is ambitious and succeeds in telling a new and refreshing tale that filmgoers have not seen or experienced on this level of deep sophistication in ages. The film transcends movie tropes and plots as it takes a realistic, gritty, and life-like spin on traditional storytelling. "Pines" is more than just a movie. It is an exploration and examination of the human experience, spirit, and conscience.
To match the film's sensational storytelling and acting is the phenomenal directing, cinematography, and music. Everything about the filmmaking craft helps enhance the emotional impact, and real life gravity of the film. It isn't just some action crowd pleaser or CGI-infested cash grab. Nor is it some black and white 'good guys vs bad guys' rehashed plot Hollywood has been spewing out for the last quarter-century. It's an emotional, heart- wrenching, and enriching drama in which you see every character as a human person capable of love, forgiveness, and sinful actions. It is a powerhouse of craftsmanship. Director Derek Cianfrance expertly weaves together a complex and emotionally draining epic that puts an emphasis on how one moment/decision can affect generations to come. He also concocts immersive third-person POV tracking shots which greatly add to the occasional thrills of the film. The cinematography and music create a hurricane of emotions to further augment the viewing experience.
It is a travesty that "The Place Beyond the Pines" has not gotten the attention it deserves. It's mandatory viewing for any film buff or life enthusiast. Because what this movie is is life on screen.