Wild finish to “The Place Beyond the Pines”

by David Flores

In “The Place Beyond the Pines” the audience is taken to places they didn’t expect to go with twists and turns that are truley surprising.

With a strong cast that includes Ryan Gosling, Bradley Cooper, Eva Mendes and Ray Liotta every character is potrayed in a beleviable way but the actors aren’t the strength in the film it’s plot is.

The movie begins with a delightful sight for the female moviegoers as Gosling’s character Luke prepares to perform in the “Circle of Death” as a motorocycle rider, along with two other riders, disobeying gravity as they avoid each other flying at full speeds in a caged circle.

After which, Luke meets up with Mendes’ character Romina, it’s shown that the two have known each other for quite a while but due to his lifestyle Luke hasn’t been around for a year. When Luke wants to spend more significant time with Romina it is revealed to him he has a baby boy with this woman, but again thanks to his unconventional lifestyle Romina doesn’t think Luke could be a fit father.
It’s hard not to feel bad for Luke and dislike Romina but then again it’s Eva Mendez playing Romina and who wouldn’t like her? Anyway, Luke wants to do the right thing and be their for his kid but Romina won’t buy it because the fact he can’t provide a stable life with the work he does, which makes Luke think it’s all about money.

In a rage of anger Luke goes on a bike ride in the woods and catches the eye of a local man who offers him work in his garage. The two become friends and after hearing his money dilemma the older gentleman offers Luke the opportunity to rob banks.

For those that have seen Gosling in the 2011 film “Drive” will immediately begin to remember the silent but deadlly character he portrayed because in both films Gosling works in a auto garage under an older gentlemen who helps Gosling make robberies and importantly Gosling is a driver.
Unlike “Drive” in this film Luke is more than alluding the police, he does the dirty work by going inside threatening the innocent and demanding for cash.

Luke is happy with the pay days but they don’t translate to the ideal family he wants, perhaps he should find honest work.

Then comes in Cooper, playing Avery Cross, an honest cop who unfortunatley has to attempt to capture the moto bandit Luke and deal with the peer pressure of his corrupt peers.

Although Gosling plays a similar character to the driver in “Drive” he does a well enough job with his dialogue but he works best when he’s driving his bike, which in the film is referred to as part of his family. The quick quote from Luke may not seem to mean much but it could mean that he doesn’t have much of a family which would explain why he wants to make a real family with Romina and their son, Jason.

Cooper looks different in his role as Officer Cross which works because it makes it believable he can be police officer. With Cross he finds himself in the wrong place at the wrong time when he crosses paths with the bank robbing Luke. Cross is what essentilally Luke wants to be, a man with a career that allows to support his family which includes a wife and a son. Cross also has his father which what might be what Luke is missing.

There are a lot of wild and crazy turns in this film but in the end just like the opening scene of the movie, which had motorcycles riding in circles, everything comes full circle