5 February 2007

The Departed

In my rush to rant about the Oscars I think I've made a grave mistake, much to my sheepish self-reckoning. You see, I watched "The Departed" during the weekend and I've now realised two things:

1. I have a serious crush on Leonardo di Caprio. Or is it more of an attraction to his character, Billy Costigan? I think it might be the latter. It's a crippling crush I'm afraid. It will take me a while to get over it, based on my experience with Tyrone Power in Captain from Castille.


2. Martin Scorcese may just win the Oscar for Best Directing. It makes this category possibly the most likely to divide the panel. I am still undecided. Scorcese managed to viciously test my suspense tolerance levels but so did Alejandro G. Inarritu. Half way through "The Departed", my abdomen was in knots from all that superbly paced screen tension. It was a first.

But getting back to my crush.
There's this scene. Billy (Leo) visits his counsellor, Madolyn, who (as we've managed to gather) he likes. His eyes rove about her place and he notices a photo of her as a young girl. A photo of a little girl riding a bike. It just happens to be the same photo that her boyfriend (Matt Damon) categorically dismissed from sight as mere nostalgic trinket. Madolyn is now intrigued. And what do you think Billy does next? He comments on the photo. Not only that, but he picks up the frame in both hands and hangs it up to gauge its effect on the room's wall. At that moment, I was hooked. There was a naive, almost juvenile tone in his gesture, it's so wonderfully offbeat from all the blood splitting and soul-crippling lies that he has to assume as an undercover officer. That scene was worth 20 tear-jerking Bollywood masalas. No, no, make that 50. Oh dear, I'm breaking up. It was a real nice moment, you have got to see it. Oh, and then the intense moments after that were great too. Although at that point, I was growing a little envious of Vera Farmiga.

And now there's this cold, empty void.
I'll have to watch "The Departed" a number of times to get over it.

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