The Place Beyond the Pines is a film of three parts, which, rather than revealing a conventional story arc, portrays lives within three generations – all scarred and shaped by small choices, large actions and the intertwined relationships of both those struggling to get by in life, and those with the chance of prominence and glory.
Each of the main character’s different personalities is emphasised by Director Derek Cianfrance’s application of shifting styles and tones. For Ryan Gosling’s Luke, see loud, erratic cinematography and an electric pace. For Bradley Cooper’s Avery, see a more stable yet edgy tempo, set in a murky, paranoid-filled backdrop of politics and corruption.
For the final chapter, a mostly depressing contemporary modern America is accentuated by bleak scenery, tones of emptiness, and despairing youths fuelled by frustration. This concluding episode is filmed with the anxiety of an imminent horrific occurrence a la We Need to Talk About Kevin. The suggestion of tragic conclusions (which has no-doubt worked its way into the American population’s psyche, through unfathomable crimes committed in recent years by the generation of ‘lost’ teens) is somewhat inevitable when you see the emotional struggles these young characters are forced to battle with. Continue reading