Friday, December 21, 2012

The Departed (2006): review: 2/10

Men, of Irish descent and various ages, behave unspeakably in Boston. The  focus is on two new police recruits: one is commissioned to act as a mole withing a criminal organisation lead by a particularly nasty hoodlum. His bosses are no cute kittens either. In contrast, the only notable woman in the film, a police psychiatrist, is all quite nice however. It`s a pity we couldn't`t spend more time with her instead of those Mick brutes!

The film is very long but despite this length the characters hardly develop at all, and remain completely two-dimensional. There is a good deal of violence, using guns, fists and shoes and pieces of metal.

The film plot is not especially complex, but nonetheless it is hard to follow. The film is not elegantly paced.

The  violence is relentless and boring. Are we supposed to enjoy or endorse the violence? It`s hard to care either way.

I don't sense that Scorcese has the feel for Irish culture, that he has for Italian. There are none of the poetic aspects that can be seen in other Scorcese films which, if also violent, have considerably more artistic and emotional complexity. I don`t understand why the Rolling Stones are playing in much of the film.  The acting is not interesting. This is partly due to the uninterestingness of Wahlberg and Damon, though Nicholsen`s character also lacks richness. Moreover, relations within the film are characterised by obviousness and unsubtlety.

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