Watch: ‘The Place Beyond the Pines’ Trailer with Ryan Gosling and Bradley Cooper

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Ryan Gosling in The Place Beyond the Pines
Ryan Gosling in The Place Beyond the Pines
Photo: Focus Features

I caught Derek Cianfrance‘s The Place Beyond the Pines in Toronto this year and it’s a solid movie, but one that wallows in its misery for so long it began to wear me down. I fully recognize the quality, but it became incredibly hard to enjoy by the end.

The story centers on Luke (Ryan Gosling), a professional motorcycle rider who turns to bank robberies to support his newborn son. He eventually crosses paths with a rookie police officer (Bradley Cooper), which results in a generational conflict that places this one right in the thematic sights of films such as Cloud Atlas and Looper.

Here’s a snippet from my review that will hopefully better explain what I was getting at in the first paragraph:

It’s always tough for me to come to a definitive conclusion on how I feel about a film when it leaves me walking away feeling numb. It’s one of the reasons grading movies is so meaningless. I wouldn’t want to watch this film again. To feel how I felt watching it would be pointless to repeat. There are no happy endings in The Place Beyond the Pines. In fact, you’d be hard-pressed to find a smile, outside of a folded picture that continues to show its face throughout, constantly reminding us of the film’s singular best moment.

The narrative breeds corruption, in more ways than one, making it both disheartening and painful to watch. Some of this can be attributed to a screenplay that has a hard time finding any measure of hope or optimism, all leading to a finale that really doesn’t add up to much at all. Where the film does succeed, once you accept its narrative, is in the performances that hold it together.

Focus picked up Place Beyond the Pines and will release it on March 29 and I’ll be curious to see how it does over the course of the year and how it sits with people. This could very easily be an Oscar caliber film for the likes of Gosling and Cooper and offers up another performance from Dane DeHaan that shows he’s well on his way to becoming a reliable actor.

You can read my full review from Toronto here and you can check out the trailer directly below.