The Place Beyond the Pines

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The highly anticipated new film from director Derek Cianfrance (Blue Valentine) is a powerfully sweeping drama exploring the unbreakable bond between fathers and sons, told through three interconnected stories set in motion by a motorcyclist’s fateful decision to commit a crime to support his child. Luke (Ryan Gosling), a high-wire motorcycle stunt performer with a carnival passing through Schenectady in upstate New York, tries to reconnect with a former lover, Romina (Eva Mendes), only to learn that she has given birth to their son in his absence. Luke decides to give up life on the road to try and provide for his newfound family by taking a job as a car mechanic. Noticing Luke’s ambition and talents, his employer Robin (Ben Mendelsohn) proposes to partner with Luke in a string of spectacular bank robberies – which will place Luke on the radar of ambitious rookie cop Avery Cross (Bradley Cooper). Avery, who has to navigate a local police department ruled by the menacing and corrupt detective Deluca (Ray Liotta), is also struggling to balance his professional life with his family life, which includes his wife Jennifer (Rose Byrne) and their infant son. The consequences of Avery’s confrontation with Luke will reverberate far into the next generation. (Dir. by Derek Cianfrance, 2012, USA, 140 mins., Rated R, Focus Features) Digital