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Infernal Affairs [Blu-ray]

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HONG KONG THRILLER Andy Lau and Tony Leung in Wai Keung Lau and Siu Fai Mak's Infernal Affairs
Miramax Films

Infernal Affairs

Current Status:
In Season
101 minutes
Andy Lau, Tony Leung, Anthony Wong
Alan Mak, Andrew Lau
Alan Mak, Felix Chong

We gave it an A

Martin Scorsese has always been synonymous with the mean streets of New York. But he had to drive four hours up I-95 to win his first and only Best Director Oscar, for the Boston noir The Departed. If you’re looking for his inspiration for that film, though, you’ll have to look even farther east than that — all the way to Hong Kong. Andrew Lau and Alan Mak’s Infernal Affairs (2002, R, 1 hr., 41 mins.) is the kind of slam-bang cat-and-mouse thriller that made Asia such an action-movie hothouse back in the late-’80s heyday of John Woo. It’s also every bit as good as Scorsese’s homage, if not better. The Matt Damon and Leonardo DiCaprio of the film are Tony Leung (In the Mood for Love) and Andy Lau (House of Flying Daggers). Leung plays a good cop who’s gone undercover to infiltrate the drug-smuggling ring known as the Triad. After 10 long years of getting his hands bloody, he’s burning out fast. Lau is the syndicate’s mole planted in the police force. He tips off the Triad’s boss whenever the heat’s about to get turned up. Both sides know there’s a rat; the only question is who’ll slip up first. Leung and Lau are both big stars in Asia, and it’s easy to see why. The cost of loyalty and betrayal is etched on their faces. Still, what makes Infernal Affairs one of the all-time great crime flicks is its whiplash twist ending. Even if you saw The Departed, you should still buckle up. A