It's the first Asian film I've ever seen (unless "Better Luck tomorrow" counts) and I was impressed how well it was done, but I wish they would of made the film a bit longer. I don't think the Asian flick explained some things as clearly as they did. For example they should of spent a few more minutes on the beginning to explain the training, to explain on how Matt Damon's Character got up through promotions and why he had a special bond with the boss, and I wish they would of shown a bit more on the boss himself.
All in all, good film, but I don't think the American Version was much more polished and had a better storyline. The actors in "The Departed" was the best I've can remember in a while, and other then DiCaprio's character in "Internal Affairs", they were alright, maybe it's a cultural thing.
Infernal Affairs is wildely known as the best film to come out of Hong Kong, which actually means something because their media has been developed far more advance than other Asian countries including China.
I have yet to see Infernal Affairs, though I'm very interested in seeing it. If it's better than The Departed, than I'm sure I'll like it... One thing is for sure though, Martin Scorsese's adaptation is no farce. I don't know if any of you have purchased the DVD yet, or the special edition for that matter, but there is a bonus feature about the Boston Mob, and how a few of the characters in The Departed were based on real people. Jack Nicholson's character, for instance, was based on an actual gangster from South Boston named Whitey Bulger. Point being, Scorsese's version isn't just a cheap "American version", there is some legitimacy to the story.
A lot of movies are banned in China for various reasons. One of my all time favorite movies, "Balzac and the little Chinese seamstress" is banned because it doesn't reflect kindly on the cultural revolution, though I find it to be one of the best films/book I've ever seen/read.
A lot of times, the government will force in a legal figure to represent good and righteousness just to show that the law always prevail. Ie. World without Theives, a cop was put in just to catch the theives just for that reason even though they play no part and made the movie significantly worse.
So I just finished watching Infernal Affairs again. (Someone uploaded the entire film to Google Video!) After seeing the original, I'm sad to say The Departed actually sucked and it did not deserve Best Picture, nor did Good O Marty deserve Best Director.
Infernal Affair just simply offered so much better creativity, more impactful scenes, and more of an emotional connection. And frankly, I think both Tony Leung and Andy Lau did a better job then Leo and Matt (Not that Leo and Matt was bad). Overall, there's just a suspensful feeling in IA that The Departed lacks. IA was head and shoulder better in playing out this cat and mouse game between the two spies.
Now, don't take me saying "The Departed sucks" out of context. The Departed is still a good movie, but when compared to Infernal Affair, The Departed is no where near in quality and entertainment.