Undercover detective Leonardo DiCaprio infiltrates the gang of Massachusetts crime boss Jack Nicholson. That’s supposed to give his cop colleagues Martin Sheen and Mark Wahlberg advance warning of Nicholson’s plans. However, Nicholson has his own man in the very heart of the police HQ, corrupt cop Matt Damon…

A truly stupendous game of cat and mouse ensues as both ‘plants’ try to uncover the other’s identity, with director Martin Scorsese wringing every drop of suspense from the plot. Damon’s cold-eyed calculation and DiCaprio’s shattered nerves are a dynamic combination, the several twists in the tale are stunning and Nicholson’s deliciously ripe turn as the villain (Ray Winstone plays his right-hand man) is a black comic tour-de-force.

A Marty masterclass which finally won the director the Best Directing Oscar he had been denied for such all-time classics as Raging Bull and GoodFellas.