8.1/10
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195 user 174 critic

Infernal Affairs (2002)

Mou gaan dou (original title)
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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:

Wai-Keung Lau (as Andrew Lau), Alan Mak

Writers:

Alan Mak, Felix Chong
23 wins & 24 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Andy Lau ... Inspector Lau Kin Ming
Tony Chiu-Wai Leung ... Chen Wing Yan (as Tony Leung)
Anthony Chau-Sang Wong ... SP Wong Chi Shing (as Anthony Wong)
Eric Tsang ... Hon Sam
Kelly Chen ... Dr. Lee Sum Yee
Sammi Cheng ... Mary
Edison Chen ... Young Lau Kin Ming
Shawn Yue ... Young Chan Wing Yan
Elva Hsiao ... May
Chapman To ... Tsui Wai-keung
Ka Tung Lam ... Inspector B (as Lam Ka Tung)
Ting Yip Ng ... Inspector Cheung (as Ng Ting Yip)
Dion Lam ... Del Piero
Chi Keung Wan Chi Keung Wan ... Officer Leung (as Wan Chi Keung)
Hui Kam Fung Hui Kam Fung ... Cadet School Principal
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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:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site | See more »

Country:

Hong Kong

Language:

Cantonese | English | Thai

Release Date:

12 December 2002 (Hong Kong) See more »

Also Known As:

Infernal Affairs See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$6,428,966 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$25,680, 26 September 2004, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$169,659

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$8,708,932, 21 October 2004
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The psychiatrist's name, "Lee Sum Yee", is a homophone (in Cantonese) for "your psychiatrist". 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

Chan Wing Yan: Should I salute you?
Lau Kin Ming: No, don't. How long have you been an undercover?
Chan Wing Yan: I've followed Sam for 3 years; I had several other bosses before. All together, it's been 10 years
Lau Kin Ming: 10 years? I should salute you, instead.
Chan Wing Yan: I just want an identity. I want to be a normal man.
Lau Kin Ming: Getting tired?
Chan Wing Yan: You've never been a mole. You won't understand. Too bad I still can't find the stooge. I'll take him down if I've found him.
Lau Kin Ming: Don't worry. Let me give you back your identity, I'll open your file, but I don't have the ...
[...]
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Alternate Versions

For the Chinese version an alternate ("politically correct") ending was used. In it, Lau gets arrested when he leaves the elevator. See more »

Connections

Remade as Double Face: Sen'nyû sôsa hen (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

Infernal Affairs
Composed & Arranged by Ronald Ng
Performed by Andy Lau and Tony Chiu-Wai Leung (as Tony Leung)
Produced by Ronald Ng and Kwok-Leung Chan
O.P. BMG Music Publishing Hong Kong, Ltd./Catchy Music Publishing, Ltd.
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Thrilling Chase of Cop Vs. Cop
15 October 2004 | by noraleeSee 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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