The Departed (Scorcese remake of Infernal Affairs)

Anyone else seen it yet? I was seriously stoked about it going into it. Hell, it was the first movie I’ve paid to watch in more than a year.

Martin Scorcese back on his home turf of making gangster movies, a story based off of an excellent HK flick, on location filming in my hometown, a truly All-Star cast up and down that not only could do bad-ass but could do bad-ass in a proper Boston accent (good God I wanted to strangle Laura Linney and Tim Robinson after watching Mystic River.) I had full-blown cinematic hard-on going into the theater.

And I was feeling the adrenaline from the first shot, with one of Scorcese’s patented long tracking shots going into some grubby conveneince store, Jack Nicholson exuding pure badness, and The Rolling Stones’ “Gimme Shelter” in the background.

But then…then it fell sort of flat from there. WAY too much exposition in the first third. It was well into half the movie before they even got to the original version’s opening set piece with the two moles covertly texting their bosses in the middle of some shady deal. The writing was, for the most part, tight and Mamet-esque, but they’d drop all sorts of completely bizarre literary references that were completely out of character. (“Hey, I facked ya motha last night real hahd. Tell her I’m sarry about the bruises.” “Hey, who was it who said, ‘Every individual has a place to fill in the world and is important in some respect whether he chooses to be so or not.’” “I think that was Hawthorne, ya fackin’ asshole.”)

But most importantly, I thought the story just didn’t mesh with Scorcese’s sensibilities. Goodfellas and Raging Bull stuck to the classic three-part rise-dominance-denouement formula, and those movies really flourished when Scorcese could build a good momentum on those grand narrative trajectories (e.g. Ray Liotta’s cocaine freak-out at the end of Goodfellas.) The story for Infernal Affairs was so full of twists and holes and red herrings that it just didn’t click for me. But a lot of reviewers are raving about it, so what do I know?

way too many twists,it was ok overall but i got lost into who was who in the middle of what is a long long movie.

i just got back now from “texas chainsaw massacre-the begining” and that was shit as well,i really ought to stop spending cash on crap like this…

Having loved Internal Affairs, I didn’t like The Departed at all. The whole atmosphere, the colours, the twist just isn’t as good as the Hong Kong version.


I think Matt Damon’s character’s personality differed too much from Andy Lau’s. I the original, Andy Lau was portrayed as a good guy who was on the wrong side of the law, while Matt Damon was an asshole who deserved what he got in the end (also, Lau didn’t die in the original).

Entertaining though…

It was funny when they were making the deal with the Chinese and mentioned blowing up Taiwan though. The whole theater laughed at that one.

I saw it and was majorly disappointed.

Goodfellas is to film buffs as Scarface is to Rappers= the holy grail of gangster movies. What makes Scorsese an film icon is how he authentically captures the essence of violence and executes the motivation of the characters. His films are character driven,mostly, with dynamic cinematography. What audiences got in “The Departed” was the equivalent of Chinese fried rice for American tastes. He basically copied key elements of the original, the death of the Sargent, the burial scene of the outcast cop and other stuff. It left me feeling as if the wind had been taking out of his sails from his Oscar loss, The Aviator, and he decided to just film by numbers.

Of course he killed off Damon’s character as if to say he wasn’t going to be revisiting this story again as the HK filmmakers did. And it was wise, as Internal Affairs 2 and 3 were just money makers.

Scorsese should be put on probation for this one.

I like Infernal Affairs and the remake doesn’t compare on many issues but that doesn’t make it a bad movie, instead it works IMO very well on its own. It was violent and graphic at time and missed the HK flair, but I still found it very entertaining and rate it only slightly lower than the original.

(On the DVD of Infernal Affairs is an alternative ending where Lau dies, too.)

aahhh danm it… forgot that there was spoiler alert on… was looking forward to see this movie, because I loved Infernal Affairs… and then I read this… should never have done that… Spoileralert (Matt Damon dies)… danm it… oh well… own fault… going to see it anyway…

I enjoyed it.

Although I noticed a couple of things. When I saw the brain splattering in Pulp Fiction it really stuck in my head as being a bit OTT.

The departed has brain splatterings all thru it and I didn’t seem too phased by it one bit.

I noticed the female audio dialog saying ‘fuck’ etc was censored out, but not the male ones. Interesting.