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The Departed

Cops or Criminals. When you're facing a loaded gun what's the difference?  

Year: 2006 
Running Time:
Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1 (Scope) 
Certificate: BBFC 18 Cert – Not suitable for under 18s 
Subtitles: This film is expected to have certain elements which are subtitled, but it is not expected that the entire film will contain them. 
Directed by Martin Scorsese 
Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon, Jack Nicholson  
An image from The Departed

Scorsese returns to form in this A-list powered Hollywood remake of the 2002 Hong Kong crime thriller, Infernal Affairs. Leonardo DiCaprio and Matt Damon star as two men going undercover on opposite sides of the law in this Boston-set gangster-cop tale of loyalty and guilt. Gangland boss Frank Costello (Jack Nicholson) recruits Colin Sullivan (Damon) into his organisation, and plants him as a mole within the city's police department. Sullivan graduates from the police academy and is assigned to the Special Investigations Unit, which targets organised crime. Meanwhile, Billy Costigan (DiCaprio), a young undercover cop, is asked by his superiors to infiltrate Costello's gang. He does jail time on a fake charge to gain credibility, and soon gains the confidence of the mob boss himself.

As both men sink dangerously further into their assumed roles, suspicions are raised on both sides about infiltration, and Sullivan and Costigan are on a race against the clock to discover the other's real identity before their own true agendas are exposed. The Irish-American Mafia and the Massachusetts State Police Department collide to devastating effect as identities are questioned, allies are betrayed and the line between good and evil becomes increasingly blurred.

Damon and DiCaprio are both completely compelling in their respective roles, and manage to portray the inner torment and blind desperation of their characters. The real stand-out, however, is Nicholson, whose performance as the brutally violent but charismatic mob boss Costello ranks among the best of his career.

The Departed is a beautifully crafted and tense crime thriller, with scene-stealing performances that will stay with you long after the film's unforgettable climax.

Sally Payne

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Screenings of this film:

2006/2007 Spring Term (35mm)
2006/2007 Spring Term (35mm)
2012/2013 Spring Term (35mm)