This remains my favorite of the three, and one of my favorite Hong Kong crime flicks ever; there's more patience for subtlety and character development here than the first film's relentless pace had time for. Francis Ng steals the show with a composed, driven and thoughtful performance as a hard-bitten, master manipulator to rival Michael Corleone.
One of those rare sequels that is better, as a whole, than the original. The plot devices are not as good in this one, however: the direction, acting, sound character development, and atmosphere are all superior to the original. This is a more mature film, made by filmmakers who are more mature. A must-see if you've seen Infernal Affairs.