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Monday, October 09, 2006

The Departed


Scorsese tops the list of American directors because, even when he fails, he strives passionately to make movies that matter. The Departed, a defiantly uncompromised vision of a society rotting from the inside, is one of his best. Act accordingly.

Although Scorsese denies it, this is a direct remake of the classic Hong Kong movie - Infrenal Affairs. Right down to the shot selection and blocking in the second half of the movie. Its the tale of two police in Boston City. A cop pretending to be a criminal, and the other a criminal pretending to be a cop. The polarity of these two characters throughout the movie often make it impossible to determine who we think is the bad guy until a third of the way through the movie. Scorsese doesn't overdo with the gore and violence, (until the last act where there's plenty) instead leading us on a journey which could go either way for a cop who's undercover and a dirty cop who's trying to find him.

Matt Damon and Leonardo DiCaprio star alongside Jack Nicholson, who's character, Frank Costello, an Irish Mobster, is a cross between an eccentric relative and cold blooded killer. Nicholsons performance is solid, if at times a little overplayed and a little too Ham at times. Matt Damon is surprisingly out-done by DiCaprio here, but the best performance of the night has to go to Wahlberg who's dry sardonic character never fails to draw a smile.

I can't finish without giving a nod to Ray Winstone as Mr French. Fantasticly psychotic Irish violent lunatic who has a stare we've rarely een Winstone don since SCUM.

Go see The Departed, because it's a thrilling take on Infernal Affairs, and come awards time, it'll no doubt scoop plenty of nominations.

3 comments:

Daniel "tracer" masters said...

I was wondering whether it was supposed to be a remake of infernal affairs. I haven't seen any of them though, always wondered if I should give them a look...

Big Al said...

the first one at least. fantastic movie. Pips Departed at the post in my humble opinion.

Rob said...

Will have to see it again, wasn't 100% convinced... too much hype. DiCaprio and Damon only just up to the job - at times excellent, but only at times, could have done with 10-15mins chopped out, slightly unsatisfactory ending. Doesn't compare with Scorsese's best. Enjoyable but if this win's Scorsese the oscar over Goodfellas it will be nothing more than patronising.