Monday, November 13, 2006

Movie Review - The Departed

Director: Martin Scorsese
Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon, Jack Nicholson and Vera Farmiga

Remake of a successful Hong Kong thriller by the name Infernal Affairs, The Departed is a beautiful movie which revolves around the lives of two moles. One is an undercover cop who has joined the thugs; while the other is a cop, but works for the gangsters. Leonardo DiCaprio plays the role of the undercover cop, Billy Costigan. Matt Damon is the cop, Colin Sullivan and Jack Nicholson is the dreaded mob leader Frank Costello.

As a child, Sullivan comes under the patronage of Costello since Costello knew his grandparents. Costello supports Sullivan and due to his clean parentage, Sullivan is successful in entering the Massachusetts State Police department. On the other hand, Costigan, who is from the family of thugs find it extremely difficult to get into the police department.

Sullivan easily wins the confidence of his superiors and is given higher responsibilities. He is in constant touch with Costello, warning him of every move made by the Police department, enabling Costello to outsmart the policemen.

The police department headed by Captain Queenan and the foul mouthed Sergeant Dignam, work out a plan to plant a mole within Costello’s men. Their obvious choice is Costigan due to links with the mob. The convince Costigan, and as part of the plan, gets him fired from the Police. They also get him convicted in a false charge and make him serve a few months in jail.

After getting released from prison, joins his cousin in drug running. He succeeds in getting Costello’s attention and joins Costello’s gang after a painful verification of his credentials. Sullivan also goes up the ladder, becoming the in-charge of a major anti-mob operation.

The situation goes out of hands, when both the police as well as Costello gets to know that they have a mole amongst them. Costello goes all out to find the mole in his gang, he enlists the help of Sullivan, but Sullivan is unsuccessful in getting the information as only Queenan and Dignam have the information of the mole within Costello’s gang.

This lays the foundation for the dramatic end which follows.

The romantic angle to the story is given by the police department physiatrist Madolyn Madden played by Vera Farmiga. She is initially attracted to Sullivan, but later when Costigan approaches her due to the highly stressed life he lives as an undercover cop, she falls for him too; leading to a love triangle.

The screenplay and direction is amazing, capturing the attention of the audience all the time. The performances by the lead cast are also superb, ably supported by the supporting cast. A few negative things would be the amount the violence and the usage of abusive language. The F word has been used 237 times.

Overall a very good movie, and its definitely worth every penny which you spend on it.

Sources: Wikipedia, IMDB

Friday, November 10, 2006

Oh God!!! I Missed my Bus...

The way I started the day today would rank very highly in my list of worst possible beginning of a day in my life.

It started off as usual, the alarm at 5:45am, the second ring at 5:55am after I had snoozed it. I slowly woke up from my bed with the I-want-to-sleep-for-5-more-minutes syndrome. Got ready and left home for the bus stop 7:05am.

There are 5 buses (company buses) from my bus stop to my office between 6:55am and 7:20am. When I came out of the gate of our residential layout, I saw two of my company buses going one after the other. Since the time was 7:15am, I knew that it was the 3rd and 4th bus, leaving just the last bus for me to take.

Time started flying, and soon 7:25am, but there was no sign of the bus. The only good thing which happened during this 10 min wait was that I got a chance to catch a glimpse of our neighbour’s daughter, while she was on her way to college. The last time I saw her was 2 months back; thanks to my long hours at office. It’s still a mystery as to where she disappears during weekends; I will solve it soon.

There’s another bus which starts 2 stop away from my bus stop, at 7:30am. After I had enough of waiting, I got into an oncoming BMTC (Bangalore Metropolitan transport Corporation) bus. Just as I took the ticket and got into a seat, I watched the 7:20am company bus overtake the BMTC bus. The bus was late.

I consoled myself by saying that I could catch the 7:30 bus from the next stop and still reach office before the bus which I just missed. The BMTC bus slowly, but steadily moved towards my new destination. And as luck would have it, the moment I got down from the bus, the other bus started moving. Since it was moving in the opposite direction, I had no chance of catching it. I watched helplessly as it slowed down twice to let a few people get in.

So my next wait began, the next bus from the new bus stand would be at 7:45am. But I was so determined to reach office before the 7:20am bus, that I decided to chase down the 7:30am bus. I got into a taxi, which offers lifts at nominal rates. They are usually taxies who are on their return journeys and take people in to earn some extra bucks.

After 10kms of hot pursuit, the taxi managed to overtake the bus and I got into the 7:30am bus. Rest of the journey was uneventful, except for the small tiff our bus driver had with another bus driver, after the latter hit our bus in a small accident. No one was hurt and the only causality was the side mirror of our bus.

After spending a painful 40 minutes in Hosur Road (Hats off to the person who has written the article on Hosur Road), our bus finally reached our office, and as we got into our bus stand, I saw the 7:20 bus coming out of the stand.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

I'm Back... donno till when...

When I wrote the post about my New Year resolution, I never knew that I would live up to each and every one of them. I’ve quit smoking and drinking; but never did I imagine that I would be able to quit blogging, since it had become part of my daily routine.

I was proved wrong, the last post on this blog is more than 5 months old. A post on the novel “Kite Runner”, which was a desperate attempt to keep my blogging habit alive. These 5 months of not blogging has had one effect – I’ve stopped making a post out of every incident in my life. But I sorely missed writing, so here I am back in the world of blogging, hoping to continue for a long time.

The main reason for not blogging was the fact that I was put into a project on June 12th. I had to learn a lot of processes during the first 2-3 weeks, and a lot of experimentation was done to the role which I handled, resulting in a truck load of work. Due to the work, I could not blog from office, and since I did not have an internet connection at home, I was totally cut off from my blog.

Last week, I had talked to my bosses (I report to 5 people!!!) about my release from the current role, and from then on work has reduced a bit. I hope to be released by the end of this month or December. I need to sort out a few things before.

I hope I am released from the current role as soon as possible, since I am not learning much in this role, just continuing with routine activities day after day.