Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.usIt took me a while, but I finally managed to go see this film last night, and now I want to go again, because it really is fantastic. Bloody, violent, full of no-good nastiness and general scumbaggery. But wonderful to watch all the same.

The film begins “some years ago” where we see a young Colin Sullivan being approached by local bad-guy-boss Costello and groomed to join the police force and become a mole. Billy Costigan also joins the police force, but he is sent out as an undercover cop to infiltrate Costello’s gang. Sullivan meanwhile has succeeded in rising through the force and is now doing the exact opposite, infiltrating the police for Costello’s benefit.

Thematically the film is mainly concerned with betrayal and family and loyalty. Both DiCaprio and Damon are playing the character of a rat, but in very different ways, and I’d have to say that DiCaprio plays it better. Or maybe just got the better role. Damon is great as the cocky, upwardly mobile cop, but it is DiCaprio’s character who has more emotion and development to explore.

All the acting is top-notch, though on occasion I thought Nicholson went a little over the top. It could be argued that his character is over the top, so we’ll let it go. Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.usIt is two and half hours of a great film, you won’t notice the time passing at all.

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6 Responses

  1. Carl V. says:

    I have heard nothing but good things about this one. Won't see it in the theatre but will have to Netflix it when it comes to DVD.

  2. Fence says:

    It's strange, but when I went looking for reviews to link to I came across quite a few less than positive ones, but if people who hadn't hugely enjoyed it went again they usually got a lot more out of it.

    It is pretty violent, but not hugely so, only a 16's here.

  3. Harlequin says:

    I think (judging from something someone in college said – she had a boyfriend who worked on it or something) that they edited out a fair bit of stuff for the Irish/Euro release. Obviously not MUCH of the violence but some of the sex. Possibly. The coke-girls-Jack scene anyway.

    Thought Jack-being-Jack was the weak point of the film for me. He's entertaining and all and I know in a way the character was frakking with people's heads and also possibly losing it a bit but it was a tad OTT for an organised crime fella to be getting away with.

    I liked it just as much and maybe a bit more the second time round. Don't know if it will stand up to repeat viewing as much as GoodFellas but any film you can watch and really enjoy twice is pretty rare so kudos.

  4. anne says:

    I'm really no fan of Scorcese (yeah.) but I loved it loved it loved it.

    And I really enjoyed Nicholson's performance – for me, being over-the-top was part of his character.

    <spoiler>One thing that bothered me was the ringing of Leo's phone when he exits the porno cinema – whereas it was set on vibrate before, and I can't imagine that anyone would think of changing it back in that context, especially someone like Leo's character when he's about to tail someone but even that I'm willing to let go…</spoiler>

    Please if I've somehow screwed up the spoiler thing, can you fix it?

  5. Fence says:

    According to IMDb there is a minute difference in the running times, so not something was cut, but not hugely so.

    I'd've preferred a little bit more of a character than Nicholson's totally evil dude, but I still enjoyed his performance.

  6. Harlequin says:

    So maybe all it was was that the US version included more of Jack and the laydeez. I'm still a bit surprised by the 16 rating but hey! Violence is cool.