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The Departed (R)





Release Date: October 6th, 2006 by Warner Brothers.
The Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon, Jack Nicholson, Mark Wahlberg, Martin Sheen, Ray Winstone, Vera Farmiga, Anthony Anderson, Alec Baldwin.
Directed by Martin Scorsese.

BASIC PREMISE: Billy Costigan (DiCaprio), a young Boston cop, infiltrates the mob to bring down mob boss Frank Costello (Nicholson) and crosses paths with another Boston cop, Collin Sullivan (Damon) who happens to be a mole in the police department. A remake of Infernal Affairs.

ENTERTAINMENT VALUE: The Departed is one of the most entertaining gangster films in recent memory not just because of its outstanding cast, but also for its consistently suspenseful plot and tight direction. Every actor has his or her moment to shine, especially Jack Nicholson who gives an Oscar-worthy performance as powerful mob boss Frank Costello and Leonardo DiCaprio as Billy. Collin and Billy work for the police department, but Billy doesnít know that Collin actually works for Frank as an informant. Likewise, Collin doesnít know that Billy works as a mole in Frankís mob. Collinís girlfriend, Madolyn (Farmiga), a police department psychiatrist, happens to be cheating on Collin with Billy, one of her patients. Even though the plot sounds a bit complicated and gets more complex as it progresses, screenwriter William Monahan smartly weaves the plot together without any headache-inducing scenes until the very twisted finale. Even though the audience knows some of the twists in advance, there are plenty more twists to spare in the third actónone of which will be spoiled here. Monahan also successfully blends witty humor with intense drama. Director Martin Scorsese does a fantastic job of keeping a fast pace with stylish cinematography and, on top of that, a very cool soundtrack. Appropriately, he also includes plenty of violence. Itís a real pleasure to watch Martin Scorsese back in top form in the gangster genre after the excellent Goodfellas and Mean Streets. What truly makes this film remarkable, though, is that itís the first movie of the year to have a long running time of 2 hours and 30 minutes without overstaying its welcome and, concurrently, requiring a second viewing. From start to finish, The Departed feels immensely riveting, thrilling and powerful.

SPIRITUAL VALUE: None is required or desired.

INSULT TO YOUR INTELLIGENCE: Absolutely none.

NUMBER OF TIMES I CHECKED MY WATCH: 0

IN A NUTSHELL: A powerful, thrilling gangster film. Smart and thoroughly riveting with a stellar cast. Martin Scorsese is back in top form.

RECOMMENDED WAY TO WATCH: Movie Theater (1st Run)


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