Martin Scorsese has finally been reeling in the rewards from a long and overdue history of great films. The Departed won Best Picture in 2006 and there really hadn’t been a movie this good since Scorsese’s The Aviator several years earlier. It seems that once the critics finally started recognizing him, there wasn’t anyone left to challenge this director’s genius.
The Departed is hard-edge philosophy, true art and the Hollywood thrill ride all rolled into one. The film takes place in Boston, Massachusetts, where the Irish Mob boss Frank Costello (played by Jack Nicholson) grooms a young protege (played by Matt Damon) to be an informant for him inside the State Police Department.
At the same time, the Police Department is grooming and undercover cop William Costigan, Jr. (played by Leonardo DiCaprio) to infiltrate Frank’s crew. So which side is smarter you may ask? Actually, both sides realize the situation they are in and go about trying to discover the true identity of the informants.
It’s ‘Spy versus Spy’ all over again folks but the plot only thickens in this amazingly multi-faceted thriller which makes one cop by the name of Sergeant Dignam (played by Mark Wahlberg) into quite the original character like never seen before.
The film also feature some great supporting roles by Martin Sheen as Sergeant Queenan, Captain Ellerby (played by Alec Baldwin) and the beautiful love interest Dr. Madolyn Madden (played by Farmiga). Once the romance between Damon’s character and Dr. Madden begins, Madden also begins seeing the undercover officer played by DiCaprio. To make matters even more complicated, she thinks DiCaprio is the bad guy and Matt Damon is the honest cop! Between her love scenes with Damon and DiCaprio, it’s a wonder this female psychiatrist can even keep her head from spinning right off her neck!
Such is the manner in which the lot of The Departed develops and creates an odd set of circumstances which lead to a funeral where the female psychiatrist is also the pregnant ex-girlfriend of who she can only guess! This is certainly a thriller with too many surprises to mention. You will have to check out The Departed to find out.