A wide-reaching crime drama from the director and star of intimate relationship study Blue Valentine seems an unusual prospect on paper, but in practice the transition isn’t as big as you might expect. Bold and sweeping as The Place Beyond the Pines may be, it still revolves around family – it’s just a shame Derek Cianfrance tries to spoil his child a little too much.
Police, Adjective is the latest in what we Brits would call “Romanian New Wave Cinema”. However, director Corneliu Porumboiu would dismiss us in true Eastern European fashion, perhaps by waving a shawl in our face and spitting “ptooey” at the phrase, which he calls “problematic”. Regardless of genre, Police, Adjective (winner of the Jury Prize at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival) is the antithesis of a cop film, replacing running about with batons with endless trudging round Eastern Europe in the same old jumper.
Taking up direction duty for first time since his impressive debut, Gone Baby Gone, Ben Affleck makes his second contribution to the ever expanding sub-genre of Boston crime films. Giving a romantic charm to a story of master criminal versus determined cop that Michael Mann would be proud of, it follows the plight of bank-robber Doug MacRay. Desperate to get out, but hopelessly locked in, will Doug get the girl like Will Hunting, or bite the dust like John Dillinger? Most importantly, will he ever get to leave The Town?