Infernal Affairs 3 DVD: Review By Evan "Mushy" Jacobs

This film has a style and feel that really plays to the honor and dishonor of all the characters.
  • OVERALL
    4.0
    GREAT
  • Feature
  • Extras
  • Replay Value
THE GOOD
This film has a style and feel that really plays to the honor and dishonor of all the characters.
THE BAD
Sparse Extra Features.
THE FEATURE
Infernal Affairs 3 centers around Lau, a corrupt police officer and the character that Matt Damon played in the American version of this film. Here, we see him in action after he gets reinstated to the Internal Affairs department. Lau must be on his guard however because there is another officer in the department whose job is to root out people like Lau. Suddenly, we see this character with his back against the wall because he has got to operate very covertly both with the good guys and the bad guys.

What makes Infernal Affairs 3 so interesting is the fact that I have already seen The Departed. I am amazed at these character's ability to think on their feet, and still be alive through all of these movies. There is so much double dealing, so much backhand action taking place, and part of the fun for viewers is getting lost in it. I will admit that this movie is even harder to follow than The Departed, but that is owing a lot to the fact that Infernal Affairs 3 is subtitled.
THE EXTRAS
Making of Infernal Affairs 3

This is a pretty by the numbers look at this film. Done with subtitles, we find out about the characters, where they are in the story, and also about the story itself. This isn't a very long breakdown of this movie, but it does orient you in the story and plays well as a companion piece. For example, one might have some questions about why the characters did what they did in this film, what was the significance of some of the climatic scenes, and this featurette does it's best to give you an overview of all that.
THE VIDEO
Widescreen Version. Enhanced for 16 x 9 Televisions. Presented in a "Letterbox" widescreen format preserving the original "scope" aspect ratio. Enhanced for widescreen TVs. This movie looked good. The effects shots were well composed, and the action scenes done in such a way that you really needed to pay attention in order to follow them. While I didn't notice an overt style to this movie, I think that that might be it's style. I think the idea is because so much is going on, the less flashy the camera moves the better. Those are still in here they are just used sparingly in this film.
THE AUDIO
Dolby Digital. Cantonese Dolby 5.1 English Stereo. Subtitled in English and Spanish. As this film was subtitled, I couldn't focus on the audio like I like to. What I heard sounded good, but I liked the score of this movie a lot. I felt it gave the subject matter a moody ambiance, and that enhanced the film. The score wasn't intrusive either. I don't think it was used to tell us what to feel, it was mainly employed to underscore a specific situation or state of mind for a particular character.
THE PACKAGE
Guns, men in black, silhouettes and a Honk Kong skyline make up this front cover. The back has some shots from the film all of which show the main characters in an understated way. There is a succinct description of what this movie is about, a Special Features list, a cast list and technical specs. While this packaging isn't that great, neither was the packaging for the DVD of The Departed that I reviewed , so I won't hold that against this movie too much.
THE FINAL WORD
I really liked this movie but I couldn't help being bothered by the lack of features on this DVD. Also, I may be wrong about this but I think Martin Scorsese combined the plots of all three movies for The Departed. I have also been hearing that there is going to be a sequel to that film, and I just think it's a bad idea. What makes the Infernal Affairs series work so well is the fact that it lets itself reside heavily with the characters. Yes, there is a lot of action and explosions, but these movies really make every effort to get inside their character's heads. The Departed did that, but something tells me a second and even third film (which they're also talking about), will become more about the thrills than about the characters within the films.

Should you want to see the original films that brought Americans the year's best picture, you should watch Infernal Affairs 3 as well as the rest of the films in this series.

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