ALLIGATORS IN A HELICOPTER

a pro script reader ponders movies, reading, writing and the occasional personal flashback

Monday, October 23, 2006

The Departed (No Spoilers)

An odd movie, in that it has a lot of real story flaws and underdeveloped character motivations. It's the kind of movie where two people who have seen it can pick away for a while at the things that don't work, as I did with a friend this morning.

Still, it's a very good movie, and I was thoroughly engaged and entertained throughout. I'm not sure why I liked it as much as I did, only that the acting is great, Scorcese does a good job, and I was caught up in it throughout.

I suspect that they trimmed a lot to even bring it in at this long length, however, and that may be why some of the plot stuff (particularly involving "the girl", and Matt Damon's motivations at various times) seems rather thin.

But I still recommend it. The squeamish may want to beware, though; brain matter does fly.

7 Comments:

At 2:33 PM, Blogger Shawn said...

It's good, but "Infernal Affairs" is much better. Without spoiling the end, in case you haven't seen it, "Infernal Affairs" has a stronger, more character-oriented resolution. Scorsese opted for the plot-driven ending. And Scorsese ripped off a couple scenes from "IF." Still, "The Departed" was entertaining.

 
At 4:09 PM, Blogger Emily Blake said...

Know what really bothered me? Two cell phone logic problems.

Leo's phone is on vibrate the whole movie. It's on vibrate in the movie theater. But when Leo leaves the movie theater to chase Damon, his cell phone rings right at the moment when it's least convenient for a phone to ring. Why would you change your phone to ringer when you're chasing the bad guy in secret?

Also, Martin Sheen and Leo talk to each other on cell phones while they're on the train. When have you ever been able to get service on a train? I've never ridden the train in Boston so maybe I'm wrong, but it took me straight out of the film.

That said, Alec Baldwin and Mark Walberg were hilarious.

 
At 4:28 PM, Blogger wcmartell said...

To echo Shawn - the Hong Kong version was about an hour shorter... and yet seemed to pack in even more story. The ending is much darker... and Scorsese could have actually played it both ways - by giving us the original ending, then twisting it with his ending.

Performances were the big thing, here - with Marky Matk proving that he should have played the tough Boston PI lead in GONE BABY GONE instead of *Casey Affleck*. His performance is so good that you'd never think he was once an underwear model.

- Bill (not an underwear model)

 
At 6:09 PM, Blogger Chris said...

I enjoyed it. Not Goodfellas or Casino great, but very good. For a cop movie, definitely a cut above the usual genre stuff. Without giving away the ending, I think the problem I had with it was that everything about the Damon and DiCaprio storylines was so tightly constructed, with twists upon twists, it felt like Scorsese really had nowhere to go (plotwise or characterwise) when their paths finally intersect. Hence the sort of emotional abruptness of the last 10 minutes. And Jack really proved more of a distraction than a support. But the getting there was great fun. I think the b.o. success will probably result in Marty finally getting his long-sought Oscar.

 
At 7:18 PM, Blogger MaryAn Batchellor said...

Disappointing review. I had high hopes. Will go see it anyway.

 
At 8:25 AM, Anonymous Lucy said...

I am also disappointed in the review since I too had high hopes. I am however more disappointed in Bill's revelation that he is NOT an underwear model. We need more screenwriters in their underwear. Any volunteers?

 
At 8:39 AM, Blogger Milehimama said...

Well, I am writing a horror movie, so maybe I could put a pic of me in my undies on the cover... just to set the mood, ya know.

 

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