The Departed (2006)
January 2, 2020 7:17 PM - Subscribe

To take down South Boston's Irish Mafia, the police send in one of their own to infiltrate the underworld, not realizing the syndicate has done likewise. While an undercover cop curries favor with the mob kingpin, a career criminal rises through the police ranks. But both sides soon discover there's a mole among them.

The movie is an adaptation of the 2002 Andrew Lau Hong Kong crime thriller Infernal Affairs, and got Martin Scorsese his first Oscar, after six previous losses. It was the third Oscar for Scorsese's long-time film editor, Thelma Schoonmaker.

Rotten Tomatoes: 91%

Metacritic: 85

CinemaScore: A-
posted by Halloween Jack (8 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
The Departed is streaming on Netflix and CBS All Access (via Amazon).
posted by Etrigan at 6:54 AM on January 3, 2020 [1 favorite]

It's been years since I saw the HK original, but I recall really liking it.

Compare and Contrast: Infernal Affairs vs The Departed (Fuds on Film, and another from Jared Mobarak). Also: 6 reasons why Infernal Affairs is better than The Departed.

In short, many find the original HK version better, though they also agree that The Departed is a good film.
posted by filthy light thief at 7:04 AM on January 3, 2020 [2 favorites]

Includes one of the worst Boston accents committed to film - Martin Sheen's (though it cannot compete for worst with Benedict Cumberbatch's in Black Mass).

But I love this movie not in small part for the joy of Marky Mark's delivery of "Maybe yes, maybe no. Maybe fuck yourself."
posted by wellred at 7:15 AM on January 3, 2020 [8 favorites]

Two things I really dislike about this movie:

1. I don’t like that they gave away the twist. It could have been a Usual Suspects/Sixth Sense-type twist, but instead, it’s just... the story of two guys.

2. Jack Nicholson. My god he’s bad.
posted by kevinbelt at 12:25 PM on January 4, 2020 [1 favorite]

Infernal Affairs is better, but I love The Depahhhted so much more. I saw Infernal Affairs first and I think it had a pretty strong influence on my taste in police procedurals/crime dramas, but The Departed is so messy and overwrought and it makes me genuinely happy when the symbolic rat runs across the symbolic view.
posted by betweenthebars at 3:26 PM on January 4, 2020 [3 favorites]

All those who love Thelma Schoonmaker’s work say aye
posted by growabrain at 1:53 AM on January 8, 2020 [1 favorite]

Around the time The Departed came out, a cinephile friend of mine was raving about it, insisting we all get together to watch a pirated copy he'd downloaded (as you do). Somebody brought edibles and I, an inexperienced user, overindulged a bit.

I'm pretty bad at recognizing famous actors by their faces on a good day, but as we started the movie and the edibles kicked in, I was completely out of it and had no idea what was going on. In my confusion, I mentally associated Matt Damon and Leonardo DiCaprio with the same character. Near the end of the movie, during a very tense scene where they appeared on screen at the same time (which I forget any other details about), I suddenly realized they were different people.

I'd known the plot wasn't making any damn sense, but until that moment I had no idea why. I said something like "wait, those are two different characters?" and for the rest of the final act everyone was laughing too much for it to have any dramatic impact.

In conclusion, while I still have no idea what this film is about, I thoroughly enjoyed it. ⭐⭐⭐
posted by The Lurkers Support Me in Email at 7:33 AM on January 10, 2020 [4 favorites]

Maybe a product of its time but I thought the roman church theme was very tacked on. From reading the comparisons to Infernal Affairs, it seems to be a carry over from that, but done poorly. There is no moral doubt in Matt Damon's character, to the point where I thought he might, rather than use his role in the end to replace Nicholson as ringleader.

Also, this has film has to be among the least professional movie psychiatrists ever portrayed: she dates not one but two of her patients, and prescribes DiCaprio drugs after describing his behavior as "textbook drug seeking."

Finally, thanks to this thread I learned that Mark Wahlberg was also Marky Mark. And then learned on Wikipedia that he was also a drug dealer and violent racist in the 80s, which makes his 90s rap persona even more confusing IMO. Well, at least he knows a thing or two about the Boston drug scene for the film?
posted by pwnguin at 11:21 AM on December 28, 2023

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