[[quoteright:285:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/TheDepartedResized_5951.JPG]]

->''"Francis, it's a nation of fucking rats."''

''TheDeparted'' is a 2006 American crime-thriller film and remake of the 2002 Hong Kong crime thriller ''Film/InfernalAffairs''.

''The Departed'' was directed by Creator/MartinScorsese, written by William Monahan, produced by Graham King, Creator/BradPitt, and Brad Grey, and stars Creator/LeonardoDiCaprio, Creator/MattDamon, Creator/JackNicholson, Creator/MarkWahlberg, Creator/MartinSheen, and Creator/AlecBaldwin. The film was nominated for five [[UsefulNotes/AcademyAward Academy Awards]] at the 79th Academy Awards of which it won four; Best Picture for Graham King, Best Director for Martin Scorsese, Best Adapted Screenplay for William Monahan and Best Film Editing for Thelma Schoonmaker. It was the first Best Director win for Scorsese. Mark Wahlberg was also nominated for Best Supporting Actor (he lost to Creator/AlanArkin for ''Film/LittleMissSunshine'')

In Boston, Massachusetts, notorious [[TheIrishMob Irish Mob]] boss Frank Costello takes neighborhood boy Colin Sullivan (Matt Damon) under his wing, and grooms him to be his informant within the Massachusetts State Police. Sullivan rises through the rank and file to get himself placed on an investigation unit that is working to bring down Costello.

Meanwhile, Billy Costigan, Jr. (Leonardo [=DiCaprio=]) is seeking to become a cop, despite the fact that he comes from a family that has a very disreputable past and numerous ties to organized crime. His interviewers eventually decide, when Costigan refuses to be intimidated out of dropping out of the academy, to arrange for him to go to prison on a trumped-up assault charge, giving him a criminal record and street cred so that he can infiltrate Costello's crew. When both sides of the law realize the situation, both Sullivan and Costigan attempt to discover the other mole's true identity before being found out.

----
!! This film provides examples of:

* AbandonedWarehouse: 344 Wash is conveniently empty.
* UsefulNotes/AcademyAward: It was nominated for five Academy Awards: Best Picture, Best Director, Best Supporting Actor, Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Film Editing. It won four of them, only losing Creator/MarkWahlberg's nomination for Best Supporting Actor.
* AdaptationInducedPlotHole: [[spoiler:One wonders why Costigan doesn't go to Dignam for help after Queenan is killed. In the original film, the captain was the only one who knew about the operation, leaving the hero completely on his own after his death.]]
* AgeCut: Colin Sullivan has one at the beginning to transition from his youth to him in the police academy.
* AlliterativeName: Madolyn Madden.
%%* AllPsychologyIsFreudian: - ZCE
* AnimalMotifs: Rats are a common motif. The last shot features a rat scurrying across a balcony with the state house in the background.
* AntiHero: Costigan is mostly a PragmaticHero. He participates in some pretty bad shit and is certainly a real {{Badass}}.
* AnyoneCanDie: [[spoiler: Almost everyone can and will.]]
* ArtisticLicenseLaw: Colin Sullivan is assigned to a detective role immediately upon graduating from the police academy for the Massachusetts State Police. In the real Staties, troopers are immediately assigned to field training in uniformed patrol upon graduation and can expect three to five years of patrol work on the roads before they are even considered for any other role or promotion in the agency.
* AsianSpeekeeEngrish: Costello says, "No tickee, no laundry," to insult some Asian gangsters with the broken English and Chinese laundry stereotypes.
* AssholeVictim:
** The police's view on Miles Kennefik, killed by Costello's crew. Captain Ellerby points out, "We're not here to solve the case of the missing scumbag. We're here to nail Costello."
** [[spoiler: Frank Costello]] himself gets killed by [[spoiler: Colin Sullivan.]] And [[spoiler: Fitzy and the rest of Costello's men]]. Subverted with [[spoiler: Delahunt]] in that he doesn't count because it is revealed that he kept Costigan's identity as a spy a secret because [[spoiler: he himself is also an undercover cop.]]
** And at the end, [[spoiler: Barrigan and finally, Sullivan himself.]]
* AteHisGun: [[spoiler:Mr. French]] had already been shot and then was trapped in his crashed/burning car, with the State Police closing in. "...fuck it."
* AxCrazy: Frank Costello embodies this trope.
* BaitAndSwitchAccusation: In the scene where Billy exits the gang's headquarters only to be accused of being a cop by two "fellow" members at the gate. Billy doesn't flinch and asks "What?" upon which the two thugs reveal that they were just playing a game and jokingly called everyone passing by and ignoring them to be cops. Billy and the audience take a deep breath.
* BattleOfWits: Sullivan vs. Costigan - find out who the other guy is without giving away your own identity. Begin.
* BecomingTheMask: Heavily discussed by Costigan, where he worries that the horrible things he has to do while undercover are actually making him more of a horrible person, which culminates in [[spoiler: him being unable to trust the police department at all; he asks to resign rather than be reinstated after Costello's death ends his mission, and upon realizing that Sullivan is a mole he immediately goes rogue to try to deal with him rather than even considering reporting him to anyone else in the department.]]
* BeingGoodSucks: [[spoiler:Costigan remains loyal to the police throughout the whole movie. He spends time in prison and gets a criminal record to gain street cred so he can infiltrate Costello's organization, is roundly abused by his allies (especially Dignam), and is finally murdered ignominiously for his trouble.]]
* BerserkButton: Don't ask Costigan if he's got his period.
* BilingualBonus: Anyone who can understand [[UsefulNotes/ChineseDialectsAndAccents Cantonese]] will get what the Chinese were ranting about, though their accents are off.
--> '''Chinese Mob Boss:''' What is wrong with you?! I've been waiting and waiting. This guy's from the government, man! If he gets caught he'll have to kill himself.
--> '''Costello's Translator:''' The boss doesn't think it's wise to bring automatic weapons. Are you crazy? Put your weapons away! Quick! Come on!
--> '''Chinese Mob Boss:''' Put the guns down.... I'm ordering you, check the goods.
* BigShutUp: Costigan to [[spoiler: Sullivan]], [[PunctuatedPounding punctuating each syllable with a punch to the face.]]
* BlackAndGrayMorality
* BlastOut: At one point a squad of cops follow Costello's men, with Sullivan ordering them to stay back and watch. Eventually they get fed up with this, ignore Sullivan's orders and charge in with guns blazing. The result is multiple casualties on both sides.
* BloodFromTheMouth:
** [[spoiler:Costello following his gut wound. He literally ''gushes'' blood once Sullivan double-taps him.]]
** Delahunt after the shootout, when giving his DeathbedConfession to Billy.
* BlowingSmokeRings: We see Billy blow some.
* {{Bookends}}: Involving ISOStandardUrbanGroceries. At the beginning of the film Frank Costello instructs the store clerk to fill a white paper bag with various groceries for the kid Colin Sullivan, notably a couple of loaves of bread and a couple of quarts of milk. In the last scene of the film we see adult Colin Sullivan walking into his apartment with a white paper bag full of groceries, two of the items you can see in the bag during this scene are a couple of loaves of bread and a couple of quarts of milk.
* CacophonyCoverUp: One gangster is shown out in the street, tossing cherry-bombs, apparently for fun. We realize in the next scene that he was covering for the sounds of gunfire.
* CaliforniaDoubling: [[BigApplesauce New York]] stands in for Boston in some scenes.
** In ''most'' scenes ... Scorsese wanted to shoot in Boston, but there were issues, and New York offered a tax credit, so they only shot in Boston for a week to use scenery that was identifiably Boston.
** However, due to the success of the film and the academy awards it earned, a 25% tax credit was created for filmmaking in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Subsequent films that take place in Boston, like ''Film/TheTown'', have hence been shot on location, and several films that are set elsewhere have been made in Massachusetts.
* CanonForeigner: Sgt. Dignam has no equivalent character in the original ''Infernal Affairs'' film, where the police captain is the only person who knows the police mole's identity. [[spoiler:This makes Dignam's reappearance at the end more unpredictable for people who have seen the original]].
* CaptainSmoothAndSergeantRough: Dignam is much more coarse and rough when compared to Captain Queenan.
* ChekhovsGun: [[spoiler:The envelope]].
* ChekhovsGunman:
** [[spoiler:Barrigan]], literally.
** [[spoiler: Dignam, who walks out of the film 40 minutes before the end seemingly for good, letting Costigan and Sullivan face off uninterrupted, before coming back in at the very end to wrap up the plot.]]
* ChewingTheScenery: [[JackNicholson "I smell a rat."]] In fact Costello almost ''literally'' chews the scenery when doing his ''bizarre'' imitation of a "gnawing, ''cheese''-eating ''fucking'' rat."
* ChronicBackstabbingDisorder: Costello. He even screws over the Chinese government when he gets a chance.
* ClusterFBomb: This is the movie with the most uses of the word "fuck" and its derivatives (237) to win the Best Picture Oscar. Most contributions come from SirSwearsALot Dignam.
* CompositeCharacter: Madolyn is a combination of therapist Dr. Lee, the undercover cop's love interest, and Mary, the infiltrator's girlfriend, creating a LoveTriangle where there had been none before.
* CountryMatters: This gem:
-->'''Oliver Queenan:''' Do you know what we do here? My section?
-->'''Billy Costigan:''' Sir, yes, sir. I have an idea...
-->'''Dignam:''' [interrupting] Whoa, whoa, whoa. Let's say you have no idea and leave it at that, okay? No idea. Zip. None. If you had an idea of what we do, we would not be good at what we do, now would we? We would be cunts. Are you calling us cunts?
-->'''Oliver Queenan:''' Staff Sergeant Dignam has a style of his own. I'm afraid we all have to get used to it.
* CrapsackWorld: The Boston Underworld seen onscreen is a horrible place of twisted morality and allegiances. There isn't musch difference between the good guys and the bad guys. One can argue that cops like Dignam and Ellerby are little better than Costello. [[spoiler: Nearly every major character is killed; Costigan, Sullivan, Queenan, Costello, French and Costello's crew to a man.]] There are few truly altruistic characters, in fact Madolyn may be the only one. Possibly Queenan.
* CruelMercy: Once he sees the jig is up, [[spoiler: Sullivan]] begs Costigan to kill him. Response: "I [[BestServedCold am]] killing you."
* CutHisHeartOutWithASpoon: "I'm gonna [[IWillTearYourArmsOff tear your fucking arm off]] and [[AssShove shove it up your fucking ass!!]]" (And this is a ''cop'' talking.)
* DaChief: Captain Queenan.
* DeadpanSnarker: Sergeant Dignam.
* DeathbedConfession: Delahunt is trying to open up to Billy about his true identity but dies during his confession.
* DeathByAdaptation: In ''Infernal Affairs'', the character equivalent to [[spoiler:Sullivan]] is a KarmaHoudini who walks away scot-free by the end of the movie. In ''The Departed'', he is killed by [[spoiler:Dignam]], a character who has no counterpart in the original, and who's added to the adaptation for this purpose alone.
* DeathIsDramatic: Averted. One of the three leading actors is killed [[BoomHeadshot instantly]] with no warning whatsoever.
* DeceasedFallGuyGambit: Arguable. It's possible that after his death, Delahunt's identity as a cop (if he even was one) is intentionally made public in order to take the heat off of Costigan.
* DestinationDefenestration: [[spoiler: Queenan is thrown out a window by half a dozen of Costello's thugs.]]
* DetectiveMole: Sullivan.
* DirtyCop: Sullivan. Ironically, he's not very well liked within the department because everyone thinks that he's using his ''squeaky clean record'' ([[ProfessionalButtKisser and a whole lot of asskissing]]) to get ahead. In a way, Costigan is technically one of these given that he is sent to prison on a trumped-up assault charge so that he can have an official criminal record and street cred before infiltrating Costello's crew, given his family's background.
* DisappearedDad: One of the major themes of the film.
* DownerEnding: And what a downer it is, not that anyone expected it to end well.[[spoiler: Almost everybody dies. Sullivan kills Frank after finding out Frank was informing on the FBI and fearing he'd rat him out. (If he had to he probably would have, given the tapes he made of their conversations.) Costigan after outing Sullivan is killed by the other mole, Barrigan, who Sullivan was unaware of was working for Frank too; Sullivan kills him to cover his tracks since the department is unaware there is more than one mole, and Dignam kills Sullivan after Costigan has the evidence incriminating Sullivan sent to him.]]
* DragonTheirFeet: Reversed and played straight at two different points.
* TheDragon: Mr. French is Costello's.
* DrFeelgood: Enforced by Costigan. Madolyn doesn't want to talk about drug prescriptions but Costigan uses a BavarianFireDrill to press Valium from her. When she offers him two pills, he refuses to take them.
* EmbarrassingOldPhoto: It's only Sullivan who thinks this way about Madolyn childhood photograph.
* EnhanceButton: Subverted when zooming all the way in on security camera footage does not enable Sullivan to discern any more details about his pursuer, keeping him from identifying Costigan.
* EstablishingCharacterMoment: How Costigan and Sullivan react to Madolyn's [[EmbarrassingOldPhoto childhood photograph]]. It was to highlight the difference in the two characters. Sullivan was more concerned about his career and his 'image' and so he didn't want that picture in his apartment. Costigan really just likes Madolyn so he can appreciate a cute picture of her childhood on the wall.
* EvenEvilHasStandards: When Costello executes two people on a remote beach by shooting them in the back of the head, he notes that the woman "fell funny". Costello's right-hand man Mr. French gives him a disturbed look and voices to his boss that he might want to talk to someone.
* EveryCarIsAPinto: During the climatic drug deal, Mr. French drives his car [[CarMeetsHouse into a container]] upon which it catches fire and explodes.
* EverythingsLouderWithBagpipes: At the graduation for the cadets
* EvilCounterpart: Sullivan to Costigan. At one point, they even wear practically identical clothing.
* EvilDetectingDog: A dog shies away from Sullivan.
* EvilPhone: Played straight when Costello is on the other end. Subverted with Queenan's phone.
* FaceDeathWithDignity: [[spoiler:Sullivan ultimately meets his fate with a dejected "[[GetItOverWith Okay]]..."]]
* FeedTheMole: In order to find the rat at SUI, Billy tells Dignam to slip the info about cameras being installed at Costello's place: "Flush it down the pipe, see if it comes out on my end."
* FingertipDrugAnalysis: Costello tastes the cocaine during the drug deal.
* FlockOfWolves: [[spoiler:The only two named members of Costello's crew who aren't undercover cops or confidential informants are Fitzy and Mr. French. And that's including Costello himself.]]
* {{Foil}}: All over the place:
** Costigan and Sullivan are both Southie Irish kids. Costigan comes from a corrupt mob-connected family who goes undercover into the very life he hates for a RedemptionQuest, Sullivan is a poor slum kid who becomes an undercover cop who wants to become legitimate.
** More generally there's the fact that the cops and the criminals are ultimately poor kids from the same Southie neighbourhood more or less, and that the only real options for them to be TheOneWhoMadeItOut is a career hunting each other on opposite sides of law:
--> '''Costello''': Cops and criminals. The way I see it is when they point a loaded gun on your head, what's the difference?
* ForTheEvulz
-->'''Billy Costigan''': You're seventy fucking years old. One of these guys is going to pop you. As for running drugs, what the fuck. You don't need the pain in the ass, and they're going to catch you. And you don't need the money.
-->'''Frank Costello''': I haven't "needed the money" since I took Archie's milk money in the third grade. Tell you the truth, I don't need pussy any more either... but I like it.
* ForeignRemake: Of Hong Kong's ''Film/TheInfernalAffairsTrilogy''.
* {{Foreshadowing}}: As pointed out by [[http://www.cracked.com/photoplasty_649_23-famous-movies-full-symbolism-you-didnt-notice_p23/#6 Cracked]], almost every death is preceded by an X in frame. Like, window frames, the floor pattern in Sullivan's apartment, a bit of tape in that elevator Sullivan and Costigan ride.....
** Also, several times earlier in the film there are closeups of people pushing buttons in elevators, and the floor indicators ... foreshadowing the climactic scene in the building under construction where [[spoiler:Brown, Costigan and Harrigan all die]].
* GoodCopBadCop: When Costigan is being interviewed about his application by Queenam and Dignam, Queenam plays the good cop while reading Costigan's application and Dignam plays the foul-mouthed bad cop trying to discourage Costigan from signing up.
* GoodIsNotNice: Dignam and to a lesser extent, Costigan.
* GoodPeopleHaveGoodSex: Costigan is a love machine. Sullivan, meanwhile, seems to have issues with erectile dysfunction. Guess which one is the hero. Averted by Costello, however, who has an active sex life (even at his old age) despite being a far from exemplary individual.
** WordOfGod says that Costigan is [[spoiler: actually the father of Madolyn's child.]]
* HadToComeToPrisonToBeACrook: Invoked when Costigan gets four months in prison to build up a reputation as a crook to be able to infiltrate TheIrishMob.
* HahvahdYahdInMyCah: Naturally Boston accents feature prominently. You even get the real package, since Matt Damon and Mark Walhberg are native Bostonians.
* HairTriggerTemper: Costigan, Costello and Dignam.
* HeroicBSOD: Costigan and Sullivan have a ''simultaneous'' one when they are [[spoiler:on the phone together after Queenan's death]]. Although Sullivan's is probably more of an Anti-Heroic version.
* HiredToHuntYourself: Sullivan, looking for a mole within the police department. He HangsALampshade on this while talking to Costello about it.
* HollywoodSilencer: [[spoiler:In the final scene]].
%%* HopeSpot - ZCE
* {{Hypocrite}}: Frank told Colin as a kid not to let anyone tell him what to do. [[spoiler:Frank's an FBI rat]].
** Sullivan and Costigan calling other characters "rat fucks" is pretty hypocritical.
* ICanExplain: Sullivan tries this on Madolyn after she has listened to the tapes and figured out who her lover really is. The break-up is inevitable though.
* IllKillYou: Billy says this to Sullivan in the elevator.
* IfYoureSoEvilEatThisKitten: Billy is constantly being tested by Costello.
* INeverSaidItWasPoison: Before dying, Delahunt figures out that Costigan is an undercover cop because he is at the place where the other gangsters were congregating to catch the mole, even though Costigan was accidentally given the wrong address. [[spoiler:Then Delahunt turns out to be an undercover BPD cop.]]
* TheInfiltration: Costigan plays the trope straight when infiltrating the Boston underworld. Sullivan plays TheMole.
* InstantDeathBullet: Played straight for at least four characters, including major ones.
* InternalReveal: Two-way reveal. Costigan comes to the office to finally reveal his identity to Sullivan. Then Costigan sees the envelope and figures out who Sullivan is.
* InterruptedIntimacy: Sullivan and Madolyn are about to go dirty in his kitchen but they get interrupted twice, first by a phone call and then by the movers at the door.
* InvulnerableKnuckles: Inverted. Costigan injures his left hand punching out a goon in a bar fight and has to have it put in a cast. Which comes back to bite him when Costello thinks the cast is a ruse to conceal a wire and inspect it rather roughly.
** Funnily enough, this is based on a scene in the original film where the cast ''is'' fake.
* TheIrishMob: Costello (partially based on real-life [[TheIrishMob Irish mobster]] Whitey Bulger) heads it.
* IrisOut: Used twice.
** There is an Iris In effect early on in an EstablishingShot of Sullivan in front of the SUI building.
** An IrisOut two-third into the movie, in a shot of Sullivan sitting at his office desk.
* ISOStandardUrbanGroceries: At the end, Sullivan carries one of these bags into his apartment. [[spoiler: He gets shot by Dignam, and the groceries do end up all over the floor. The original script even called for the rat that comes out to start nibbling on a fallen bagel.]]
* {{Jerkass}}: Sullivan and Costello.
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: Staff Sgt. Sean Dignam. He is a rude, obnoxious bully who needlessly antagonizes everyone he comes in contact with, but is dedicated to the job and fiercely loyal to Queenan. [[spoiler:He saw to it that Queenan's death, as well as Costigan's (who he didn't even like) were avenged.]]
* [[{{Jurisdiction Friction}} Jurisdiction Friction]]: There's a small bit between Sullivan and members of the Lynn police when they find the bodies of the two Italian mobsters sent to kill Costigan. [[{{Truth In Television}} Truth In Television]] too, since the Staties have jurisdiction in all homicide investigations in Massachusetts with the exceptions of Boston and Worcester.
* KarmaHoudini: Subverted. [[spoiler:At the end it looks like Sullivan is going to get away scot-free. Then Dignam makes sure that can't happen.]]
* KillEmAll: With extreme prejudice.
* {{Kneecapping}}: Sullivan uses this type of MutilationInterrogation technique on one of the baddies. Apparently it hurts badly if you don't go into shock.
* KudzuPlot: They stretch this out into a ''two-and-a-half hour movie''. Hell, it takes 20 minutes just to get to the title card!
* LargeHam: Frank Costello.
* LikeASonToMe: Costello tells this to Sullivan, after Sullivan finds out that [[spoiler:Costello was an [=FBI=] informant.]]
-->'''Costello:''' You know I'd never give you up. You're like a...
-->'''Sullivan:''' What, like a son? To you? Is that what this is about? All that murdering and fucking, and no sons.
* TheLoinsSleepTonight: Sullivan's erectile dysfunction. Madolyn makes a comment about 'last night' and its 'very common among men'. Possibly a case of SexualKarma.
* LyingToThePerp: During the talk with cousin Sean on the balcony, Costigan is asked to tell if he is a cop, which he denies.
* LoveTriangle: Between Madolyn, Sullivan and Billy. Added for RuleOfDrama, there was no such thing in the original.
* MaleFrontalNudity: Invoked: Costello whips out a fake penis in a pornographic movie theater at one point during a covert meeting with Sullivan.
* MexicanStandoff: Between Costigan, Sullivan and Brown during the RooftopConfrontation.
* MisterSandmanSequence
* TheMole: Sullivan is a mole planted by Costello to be his informer within the police, while Costigan works the other way as a mole planted by the cops to be an informer within Costello's crew.
* MyCard: Madolyn hands her card to Sullivan in their MeetCute scene at the elevator.
* NoHoldsBarredBeatdown: For the scene where Billy Costigan beats up the two Italian guys in the store.
* NotHisSled: [[spoiler: Sullivan's]] death plays out differently compared to the original Hong Kong version.
* NumberTwo: Dignam for Queenan.
* ObfuscatingStupidity: Early on in the film Costigan pretends to be significantly less intelligent than he is, in hopes that Costello won't consider the possibility that he's the mole.
* ObstructiveVigilantism: Dignam keeps mum about what he knows, and in the end he [[spoiler:[[WhyDontYouJustShootHim just shoots Sullivan]]]].
* OddlySmallOrganization: The Boston mob, or what we see of them, is composed of five members, twenty to forty percent of whom are [[spoiler: [[FlockOfWolves undercover cops]].]]
* TheOneWhoMadeItOut: Sullivan while serving as an undercover cop gradually becomes a DragonWithAnAgenda, in that he wants to study law and start a political career (as implied by his constant gazing at the Boston State Legislature), Costello keeps reminding him of who he's serving. [[spoiler:Then Sullivan finds out he's TheMole for an FBI and has dirt on him that can sabotage his future, so he decides to go KillEmAll on his organization and use the success as a platform for a new career. And he would have gotten away with it too, if it hadn't been for Dignam in his Track Pants]].
* OneSteveLimit: Averted. There are two characters with the first name "Sean": Dignam, and Costigan's cousin.
* OohMeAccentsSlipping:
** MartinSheen, God bless him, and the therapist.
** For LeonardoDiCaprio, it is explained within the story that Costigan faked his accent based on the social situation.
** On a point of interest, Creator/MarkWahlberg and Creator/MattDamon are immune to this because they're native Bostonians. Wahlberg specifically is even of a working class background, and he based his portrayal of Dignam on the cops who arrested him many times as a teenager... making this TruthInTelevision.
* OpeningMonologue: Costello gives one.
* OvertRendezvous: Whenever Queenan and Dignam need to chat with Costigan, they meet him in some park/riverbank area. This worries Costigan, because he knows if anyone sees him with them, he's got a crosshair on his forehead.
** Costello points out how stupid it is for Sullivan to meet with him in a porno theater. This turns out to be prophetic, as Costigan almost catches Sullivan when he leaves.
* ThePasswordIsAlwaysSwordfish: Costigan reveals that the password for his file in the police database is his full name (including spaces). Sullivan can only shake his head.
* PoliticallyIncorrectVillain: Costello mentions a distaste for "niggers" in his opening monologue. While it is shown to have historical significance this racism fails to show up in any significant way within the plot - it is only used to [[EstablishingCharacterMoment establish]], mere seconds into the movie, that this guy is not a good man.
** He's also pretty equal-opportunity non-PC. He throws around "guinea" (a very derogatory term for Italians) all the time and calls his Chinese contacts "Chinamen" and "chinks".
* PrettyLittleHeadShots: Averted as most people in this movie die from getting shot in the head, and it's ''never'' pretty. It's also [[DefiedTrope defied]] in the opening montage at the academy, as the instructor details for his cadets the effects that their hollow point ammunition would have on a human skull.
* PrisonRape: Amusingly subverted. Madolyn asks Costigan about his time in prison, leading to this exchange:
--> '''Billy:''' Oh, what, you wanna hear about the showers, is that it?
--> '''Madolyn:''' Why, did something happen to you?
--> '''Billy:''' (''{{Beat}}'') ... No.
* PrisonsAreGymnasiums: We see Billy getting in shape while being in prison.
* ProlongedPrologue: The credits don't appear until nearly 20 minutes after the start of the movie, by which time you've already seen a flashback scene, a TrainingMontage, and the first plot twist.
* ProperlyParanoid: Costello and Queenan are both correct in their assumptions that there's a mole in their respective teams. [[spoiler:More than one, in both cases]].
* ReasonableAuthorityFigure: Captain Queenan (who also has some overlap with TeamDad).
** Ellerby as well, despite his somewhat eccentric personality.
* RedemptionQuest: In Costigan's introductory scene, Queenan and Dignam press him as to why he's trying to be a police officer and go over the numerous members of his family who were involved in organized crime. Costigan suggests that he is trying to improve his family name and disassociate himself from the disreputable backgrounds of people like his late father, his late uncle, or his cousins.
* RightHandVersusLeftHand: What the movie amounts to. The Massachussets State Police (Staties) send a mole into Frank Costello's organization (Costigan), he finds out that Costello is in fact a FBI mole and the Feds are screwing the Staties over. Later, [[spoiler:Delahunt is revealed to be another Mole, only from the Boston Police Department. Essentially a massive GambitPileup between city, state, and national police who fail to collaborate or trust each other]].
* RooftopConfrontation: Costigan and Sullivan have one after they have figured each other out.
* SanitySlippage:
** Costello becomes more unhinged as the story progresses. Which is disturbing to see, since he's not terribly sane to start with.
** Costigan struggles with this from time to time.
* SelfOffense: Sullivan stabs some random restaurant worker in the chest, believing him to be Costigan.
* ShoutOut: The scene in the graveyard has significant visual parallels with a scene in ''Film/TheThirdMan''.
** When a character is about to die, an X appears somewhere in the frame. This is a Shout Out to ''Film/{{Scarface 1932}}'' by Creator/HowardHawks.
** We briefly see a character watch Creator/JohnFord's ''The Informer'' on TV, a movie set in Ireland about informers ratting each other out.
** The finale with a rat is likewise a reference to ''Film/AllThatHeavenAllows'' where a deer's sudden appearance in the background for RuleOfSymbolism is mockingly invokved with even more literal meaning.
** The film is a WholePlotReference to other FilmNoir about police informers, such as ''Film/WhiteHeat'' and Creator/SamuelFuller's ''Underworld U.S.A.''.
* ShootHimHeHasAWallet: A non-fatal variant when, during a shakedown, Costigan pistol-whips a bookie and knocks a couple of his teeth out. "I was goin' for my fuckin' cigarettes!"
* ShoutOutToShakespeare: "Readiness is all." [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]] by Dignam.
* SirSwearsALot: Staff Sergeant Dignam.
* SmugSnake: Sullivan grows increasingly more loathsome throughout the film, climaxing in his confrontation with Costigan on the roof and subsequent elevator ride. [[spoiler: Weeping, he begs a clearly disgusted Costigan to shoot him to give him an easy way out. Costigan [[CruelMercy refuses.]]]]
* TheSmurfettePrinciple: Madolyn.
* {{Southies}}
* SpiesInAVan: We see someone from the police force taking pictures of Costello from a white van. Sullivan gives Costello a tip to warn him.
* SpySpeak: When someone is communicating with Costello via phone, they always address him as "Mom" or "Dad" to make it seem like they're communicating with their parents. One example is when Fitzy is detained for a traffic violation. Sullivan poses as the lawyer and tells him to call his mom and tell her he won't be home for supper. Fitzy goes along and makes the call, which goes to a house where Mr. French and Costigan are handling some drugs. He says the line, which tells them to clear out the apartment, then set the place on fire.
* StrangeMindsThinkAlike:
** The cranberry juice scene.
** The echo of the "When you're facing a loaded gun, what's the difference?" This is what Costello says in his opening monologue, then Costigan to him in a bar later on.
** "School's out."
* SurprisinglySuddenDeath: [[spoiler:Billy Costigan]] gets killed instantly with no warning.
* SympatheticAdulterer: Madolyn is quite warm and nice for someone who cheats on her boyfriend.
* TeamDad: Queenan, especially to Dignam and Costigan.
** When Costigan had enough of Dignam's abuse and they started brawling on the street, Queenan breaking them up was like a father dealing with his two misbehaving kids.
* TelevisionGeography:
** Boston's Government Center is portrayed as the Massachusetts State Police headquarters. In actuality, the MSP general headquarters is in Framingham.
** Likewise, the Massachusetts state police academy is in East Braintree, a small town outside Worcester, not Boston.
** An undercover investigation into the Boston mob would probably be conducted by the Boston Police Department, not a state police force. However, there ''is'' a BDP city cop undercover among Costello's crew, and its doubtful he limits his criminal activities to the city itself, which might be why the State Police is involved.
** When arrested by Costigan, Sullivan tells him "good luck explaining this to a Suffolk County jury!" Suffolk County has no government or courts of its own, as they have been incorporated into the city of Boston.
* ThereAreNoTherapists: AvertedTrope: Billy Costigan must see a therapist as part of his "parole" and to maintain his cover.
* ThisIsUnforgivable: How the State Police feels about [[spoiler: Queenan's death]]. They're actively hunting Costello after that, and not even bothering to be subtle with their tails.
* TitleDrop: Thrice in English, once in Cantonese.
%%* TortureAlwaysWorks: In this case, it would be ultimately ''less'' painful to maintain the lie. - ZCE
* TroubledButCute: Costigan, to Madolyn.
* TheUnreveal: What Costello got Sullivan after he graduated from the Police Academy. The screenplay actually goes out of its way to say we'll never know what it is.
* UncomfortableElevatorMoment: Costigan and Sullivan after they know the truth about each other.
* UndercoverCopReveal: Arguable, by Delahunt during his final moments.
* UndisclosedFunds: When Billy is hired for the undercover job, Queenan writes a sum on a piece of paper and hands it to him. We never get to see how much he was offered, but we can assume these are the $30,000 "insurance money" Billy later claims to have received for his mother's death.
* UngratefulBastard: So how does [[spoiler:Sullivan]] thank the guy who saved him from his captor? By shooting his rescuer in the face, of course.
* {{Unperson}}: With no one from the undercover unit left to vouch for Costigan, Sullivan deletes his service records.
* VeryLooselyBasedOnATrueStory:
** While the film is a remake of ''Infernal Affairs'', Costello was also partially based on real life [[TheIrishMob Irish Mob]] boss James "Whitey" Bulger who was also working for (and protected by) the FBI. He eventually became one of the FBI's [[http://www.fbi.gov/wanted/topten/fugitives/bulger.htm Ten Most Wanted]] and was finally arrested in June 2011. Strangely enough, Bulger was rumored to have seen the movie when it came out, and apparently liked it.
** Colin Sullivan is also based loosely on John Connolly, who Bulger used to treat to ice cream as a kid, and grew up to become the FBI agent who regularly tipped Bulger off that that the police were on to him in return for info that brought in lesser criminals who often coincidentally happened to be Bulger's rivals.
* VigilanteExecution: [[spoiler: Sorta. Sullivan manages to kill the only people who've discovered that he's Costello's mole and appears set to get away with it without even being charged with a crime, much less convicted, but Sgt. Dignam has other ideas.]]
* VillainProtagonist: Sullivan.
* VillainousBreakdown: Frank Costello, and later on, [[spoiler: Colin Sullivan at the end.]]
* VillainousBSOD: Played with when Sullivan [[spoiler: discovers that Costello is an informant]] he [[spoiler: leads the police to the gang's location and ultimately kills Costello himself]], actions that are undoubtedly "moral", yet he only does these things to close the door on his criminal life and to save his own skin.
* WholePlotReference: To ''Film/GangsOfNewYork'': Creator/LeonardoDiCaprio plays an Irish guy with a [[TheIrishMob Mob]] family history who infiltrates a gang in an east coast metropolis in order to gain the trust of the bigoted, extremely hammy mob boss - a lot of [[{{Southies}} Irishisms]], [[DirtyCop dirty]] [[OfficerOhara cops]] and a love triangle ensue. Both are directed by Martin Scorsese.
* WickedCultured: Costello is a fan of opera.
* YourMom: Averted, Dignam sees this line coming and prevents it from being used on him.
-->'''Ellerby:''' Go fuck yourself.
-->'''Dignam:''' I'm tired from fucking your wife.
-->'''Ellerby:''' How's your mother?
-->'''Dignam:''' Good, she's tired from fucking my father.

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