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A Bloated, Hot Mess
Sure, there's a great cast. Nicholson has his moments, but many forced ones. I'm fine with raw, violent movies especially if it helps lose me into the realism, but the violence here was gratuitous an--even old ladies had filthy mouths. Mark Wahlberg's character was the worst offender. His character didn't have much more to do than to curse. The whole project was lacking cohesion, seeming like a director's first project...but this is Scorcese!. It started off with overly fast pacing and it never did settle in. I didn't care about any of the characters. I wanted to quit, looked at the time: an hour an a half in, and realized the was still another hour left.
The cast is pure stardom - and they're all playing great, the story is dark and a bit evil but very well told
|Leonardo DiCaprio||Billy Costigan|
|Jack Nicholson||Frank Costello|
|Matt Damon||Colin Sullivan|
|Dick Hughes||Uncle Edward|
|Ray Winstone||Mr. French|
|Alec Baldwin||Captain Ellerby|
|Kevin Corrigan||Cousin Sean|
|James Badge Dale||Barrigan|
|Thomas B. Duffy||Govenor|
|Martin Sheen||Captain Queenan|
|Mark Wahlberg||Sergeant Dingam|
|Tom Kemp||Billy Costigan, Sr.|
|Patrick Coppola||Bookie Harassed by French|
|Brian Haley||Detective #2 Tailing Queenan|
|Terry Serpico||Detective #3 Tailing Queenan|
|Dorothy Lyman||Woman at Bar #1|
|Shay Duffin||Bartender at Brasserie|
|John McConnell||Bookie in Costello's Bar|
|Conor Donovan||Colin Sullivan|
|Stream||Shopper in China Town|
|Thomas B. Duffy||Governor|
|William Severs||Older Priest|
|Mick O'Rourke||Jimmy Bags|
|Michael Ballhaus||Director of Photography|
|Felix Chong||Story Contributor|
|Alan Mak||Story Contributor|
"Lies. Betrayal. Sacrifice. How far will you take it?"
Colin Sullivan (Damon) is introduced to organized crime by Irish-American mobster Frank Costello (Nicholson) in the Irish neighborhood of South Boston. Costello trains him to become a mole inside the Massachusetts State Police. Sullivan is accepted into the Special Investigations Unit, which focuses on organized crime.
Before he graduates from the police academy, Billy Costigan (DiCaprio) is asked by Captain Queenan (Sheen) and Staff Sergeant Dignam (Wahlberg) to go undercover, as his family ties to organized crime make him a perfect infiltrator. He drops out of the academy and does time in prison on a fake assault charge to increase his credibility.
As both men infiltrate their respective organizations, Sullivan begins a romance with psychiatrist Madolyn Madden (Farmiga). Costigan sees her for his probation and develops a relationship with her, as well.
After Costello escapes a sting operation, both moles become aware of each other's existence. Sullivan is told to find the "rat" and asks Costello for information to determine who is the informer within his crew.
Costigan follows Costello into a cinema, where Costello gives Sullivan an envelope containing personal information on his crew members. Costigan then chases Sullivan through Chinatown. When it is over, neither man knows the other's identity. Sullivan has Queenan tailed to a meeting with Costigan, and Costello's men kill Queenan. When they exit, Costigan pretends he has come to join them. Later, Costello's henchman, Fitzgibbons (O'Hara), reveals that Delahunt (Rolston), a crew member, was an undercover cop. Dignam is forced to step down as a consequence.
Using Queenan's phone, Sullivan reaches Costigan, who refuses to abort his mission. Sullivan learns of Costello's role as an informant for the Federal Bureau of Investigation from Queenan's diary, causing him to worry about his identities being revealed. With Costigan's help, Costello is traced to a cocaine drop-off, where a gunfight erupts between his crew and police, resulting in most of the crew's being killed. Costello, confronted by Sullivan, admits he is an occasional FBI informant. Sullivan then shoots him multiple times. With Costello dead, Sullivan is applauded the next day by everyone on the force. In good faith, Costigan comes to him for restoration of his true identity and to be paid for his work, but notices the envelope from Costello on Sullivan's desk and flees, finally realizing Sullivan is the enemy. Knowing he has been found out, Sullivan erases all records of Costigan from the police computer system.
Madolyn tells Sullivan she is pregnant, but does not reveal who the father is. Later, she discovers a package from Costigan containing a CD with recordings of Costello's conversations with Sullivan. Sullivan walks in as she is listening and tries unsuccessfully to assuage her suspicions. He contacts Costigan, who reveals that Costello recorded every conversation he had with Sullivan. Costello's attorney left Costigan in possession of the recordings and he intends to implicate Sullivan. They agree to meet at the building where Queenan died.
On the roof, Costigan catches Sullivan off-guard and handcuffs him. As Costigan had secretly arranged, Officer Brown (Anderson) appears on the roof as well. Shocked, Brown draws his gun on Costigan, who attempts to justify his actions by exposing Sullivan as the rat. Costigan asks Brown why Dignam did not accompany him, but Brown does not answer. Costigan leads Sullivan to the elevator. When it reaches the ground floor, Costigan is shot in the head by Officer Barrigan (Dale), who then shoots Brown and reveals to Sullivan that Costello had more than one mole in the police. When Barrigan turns, Sullivan shoots him in the head. At police headquarters, Sullivan identifies Barrigan as the mole and has Costigan posthumously given the Medal of Merit.
At Costigan's funeral, Sullivan and Madolyn stand at the grave. Sullivan attempts to talk to her, but she ignores him. When Sullivan enters his apartment, Dignam, wearing hospital footies and surgical gloves, shoots him in the head with a suppressed pistol.
Theatrical : 2006-10-06 : United States of America
Theatrical : 2006-09-26 : New York City
DVD : 2007-02-13