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Infernal Affairs (2002)

Mou gaan dou (original title)
A story between a mole in the police department and an undercover cop. Their objectives are the same: to find out who is the mole, and who is the cop.

Directors:

(as Andrew Lau),

Writers:

,
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Popularity
3,055 ( 403)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Chen Wing Yan (as Tony Leung)
...
SP Wong Chi Shing (as Anthony Wong)
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...
...
...
...
...
May
...
...
Inspector B (as Lam Ka Tung)
...
Inspector Cheung (as Ng Ting Yip)
Dion Lam ...
Chi Keung Wan ...
Officer Leung (as Wan Chi Keung)
Hui Kam Fung ...
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Storyline

Chan Wing Yan, a young police officer, has been sent undercover as a mole in the local mafia. Lau Kin Ming, a young mafia member, infiltrates the police force. Years later, their older counterparts, Chen Wing Yan and Inspector Lau Kin Ming, respectively, race against time to expose the mole within their midst. Written by Aya

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

". . . choose how to live the rest of your life.: Inspector Lau Min Ming See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

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Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

12 December 2002 (Hong Kong)  »

Also Known As:

Infernal Affairs  »

Box Office

Budget:

$6,428,966 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$179,789 (Japan) (24 October 2003)

Gross:

$89,594 (USA) (15 October 2004)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film had been selected as the Hong Kong entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 76th Academy Awards but it was not nominated. See more »

Goofs

Near the climax, when the lift door opens, the cops handling the pistols don't have their fingers on the trigger - but are just holding the gun. See more »

Quotes

SP Wong: Let me tell you a story. Two men need an organ transplant, but there's only one organ. So they play a game. They each put a card in their pocket. Whoever can guess the other's card wins the organ.
Sam: You know I can see your card.
SP Wong: I see yours as well.
See more »

Connections

References Eight Legged Freaks (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

The Forgotten Time
Composed by Chen Hong Ming
Lyrics by Chen Hong Ming
Performed by Tsai Chin
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Thrilling Chase of Cop Vs. Cop
15 October 2004 | by (Queens, NY) – See all my reviews

I'm late in discovering the Hong Kong crime thriller genre so I can only compare "Infernal Affairs (Mou gaan dou))" to its Hollywood compatriots. It grippingly is the equal of such intense examinations of the anguish of undercover cops as "Donnie Brascoe" or dirty cops such as "Narc" or "Training Day."

Key is the dynamic opposite pairing of two leonine, charismatic actors, Tony Leung Chiu Wai, the self-sacrificing heart throb from "Hero (Ying xiong)" and the languid lover from "In the Mood for Love (Fa yeung nin wa)" here as an antsy, anguished too long undercover cop versus Andy Lau as his crisply efficient, ambitious counterpart.

The plot, propelled as well by the music, unpredictably twists and takes hairpin turns from the beginning so that even with helpful flashbacks it's a thrilling roller coaster ride to try to follow the constantly changing loyalties, manipulations, deals and revelations, not unlike the TV series "The Wire."

Regardless, you get that the real battle is for the characters' souls as much as their lives and you hold your breath to the last surprising minute. The initial motivations for how the men came to be at this crossroads will doubtless be explored in the prequel and sequel that haven't been released in the U.S. yet.

The women are just the girlfriends, but they do have separate lives, jobs and choices that impact the men in their lives.

With noted cinematographer Christopher Doyle is listed as a "visual consultant" in the credits, the great bulk of the film takes place at night, like a comparable chase film "Collateral," so it was unfortunate that the print I saw was not pristine.

It was also annoying that the subtitles were white on white illegible and that ideograms that are shown in the scene are not translated, even when the camera rests on them for a length of time that makes one assume something significant is written there.


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