“I don't want to be a product of my environment. I want my environment to be a product of me. .”
The last week of Gangster fortnight, unsurprisingly features another Martin Scorsese feature on this weeks tee.
In 2006 a mash-up of a remake of the Hong Kong movie Infernal Affairs and the real-life Boston Winter Hill Gang finally won Martin Scorsese his first Academy Award for Best Director. The film stars Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon, Jack Nicholson, and a surprising scene-stealing turn from Mark Wahlberg.
Boston cop Billy Costigan (Leonardo DiCaprio) goes undercover to infiltrate the organisation of gangland chief Frank Costello (Jack Nicholson). As Billy gains Costello's trust, Colin Sullivan (Matt Damon) infiltrates the police department and becomes a mole to report back to father figure Frank. When both organisations learn they have a rat in their midst, Billy and Colin must figure out each other's identities to save their own lives.
Nicholson is having an absolute blast and really creates tension as he makes a character who is volatile, sadistic and ruthless. You really don't know how his character is going to react in any given circumstance which adds to the high stakes of cat and mouse (or should that be a rat) Nicholson would go on to make only two more films before his retirement in 2010, but the role of Costello is his swan song in all its scene chewing glory.
Although as a piece of film it's not Scorsese's best it is one of his most mainstream and fun movies, everyone is having a great time and is almost Quentin Tarantino inspired in some of its claustrophobic stress-inducing sequences, where no character feels safe. The Departed has fantastic quotable dialogue throughout, and a plot that finds all sorts of symmetry of an undercover cop in with the mob, an undercover mobster in with the cops and a whole mischief of rats.
Our tee is a tribute to the fantastic 2006 gangster movie, grab yours now.
Featured image/photographs: Warner Brothers