On opposite sides of right and wrong, Billy Costigan (Leonardo DiCaprio – Titanic, Gangs of New York) and Colin Sullivan (Matt Damon – The Bourne Supremacy, The Brothers Grimm) have both infiltrated a division of the Irish Boston mob run by Frank Costello (Jack Nicholson – The Witches of Eastwick, Wolf), a man that the Boston Police Force have been trying to bring down for years. Both end up looking out for the unpredictable Costello, not blowing their cover and trying to unearth the moles – in other words, each other.
Costello had for years placed some of his best young men in the Boston Police Academy in order to have some of his own on the inside. Costigan is a young man from the streets of Boston and Costello has had his eye on him for years. Unfortunately for Costello, the police have got to Costigan first. Police boss Oliver Queenan (Martin Sheen – Apocalypse Now, Bobby) and Agent Dignam (Mark Wahlberg – Invincible, Rock Star) have assigned him an undercover job trying to infiltrate Costello's operation. Costigan quickly gains Costello's trust and becomes a big player in his operation. Sullivan was placed by Costello and rose quickly within the police ranks. He has become Costello's eyes and ears on the inside. The two men become consumed by their double identities and as a result the line between fiction and reality becomes severely blurred. Both Sullivan and Costigan realize quickly that they are being monitored by the other side. They have to find out who is on their tail fast and once that happens violence is sure to raise its ugly head.
With his latest film legendary director Martin Scorsese (Raging Bull, Taxi Driver) has gone back to what he does best – gangster films. He is strongest when he is depicting the dark and violent side of the mafia or gangs as he has done with "Gangs of New York", "Mean Streets" and "Goodfellas". He seems to really be able to depict the language, look and feel of these types of stories and characters. For this film he has 'borrowed' the idea behind the Asian film "Internal Affairs" has transferred it from Hong Kong to Boston and from the Asian mob to the American Irish one. The mob is the mob, right?! The transition is flawless and the film works beautifully. Scorsese comes up with a film that is full of violence, betrayal, bullets, blood, and gritty realistic dialogue. He is in his element.
Scorsese is not the only one in his element as Mark Wahlberg, Jack Nicholson, Matt Damon, and Leonardo DiCaprio all turn in good performances. Each inhabits the skin of his character (o.k. maybe Nicholson is a little or a lot over-the-top, but when isn't he?) and give believable performances. This is the first film I have seen where DiCaprio is not a little boy in it, but he finally is seen as a man. Isn't it about time? Wahlberg did so well that he was able to gain an Oscar nomination. Not only are the lead actors good, but they are ably supported by a stellar cast that includes Alec Baldwin, Martin Sheen, Anthony Anderson, and Ray Winstone.
If you are not a fan of violence and blood and guts then this is not the film for you. But if you can tolerate that and are in to clever stories that will have you on the edge of your seat guessing right up until the end then rent or purchase this winner. It was definitely one of the stronger films in 2006.
-English and Spanish subtitles