Domino DVD: Review By Evan "Mushy" Jacobs

A solidly put together cast of very good actors save this movie.
  • OVERALL
    2.5
    WORTHY
  • Feature
  • Extras
  • Replay Value
THE GOOD
A solidly put together cast of very good actors save this movie.
THE BAD
Too much happening on screen all the time.
THE FEATURE
Domino is a movie that Tony Scott hindered because of his visual style. In fact, I think that he needs to return to the look that he employed in such movies as True Romance and The Fan. These movies were big, they had wall to wall music but there wasn't any of the quick cuts and camera movements that Tony Scott currently seems to depend on. Flawed as a movie like The Fan may have been, it at least was something someone older could follow.

It wasn't like I was lost while watching Domino. This tale of Keira Knightley playing a bounty hunter is a relatively straightforward one, save for the convoluted money subplot that the film hangs it's hat on. Also, there is a scene with Tom Waits that really should have been in the deleted pile. Tony Scott has made a film for the so called MTV generation, however, in being so visually oriented he ended up leaving a majority of his audience out in the cold.
THE EXTRAS
Commentary Tracks

There are two commentary tracks on this DVD. One is with Tony Scott and the screenwriter Richard Kelly. The second track is taped script notes and story development meetings with Tony Scott, Zach Schiff-Abrams, Richard Kelly and Tom Waits. While the first track is pretty straight forward (even though Scott and Kelly aren't doing the commentary together), the second one perplexed me. Some of it seemed liked they were watching the movie together, other parts it just seemed like people talking about the script in relation to what we are seeing on screen. Truthfully, I appreciate the effort but there was just too much happening with this one.

Deleted and Alternative Scenes

These scenes have an optional commentary track. There are 7 of these in total and they have titles like "Explosion Aftermath" and "Ian Tells Off Howie Stein." Quite honestly, I only looked at a few of these, simply because by the time the movie was over I'd had enough stylization to last me a lifetime.

"I Am A Bounty Hunter: Domino Harvey's Life" Featurette

This doc*mentary tells a more laid out and easily structured version of Domino Harvey's life. We see how she got started and what ultimately drove her to her untimely demise at the young age of 35. At the heart of her story (which I think the Domino movie does and doesn't capture), is the fact this was was a woman who didn't see herself living a normal life. As result, she seemed to do everything in her power to avoid that.

"Bounty Hunting on Acid: Tony Scott's Visual Style" Featurette

This featurette will either explain this movies mess or enlighten you with how Tony Scott works. For me, it was the former. When you come to realize that they are shooting with 6 cameras, how they wanted each part of this movie to have it's own look, it becomes painfully obvious to me that Domino accentuated Oliver Stone-styled filmmaking at it's most Alexander-esque.
THE VIDEO
Widescreen Version presented in a format preserving the 2.40:1 aspect ratio of it's theatrical exhibition. Enhanced for widescreen TVs. I understand that the look of this film was supposed to show us the many shades of Domino Harvey's life, and for the most part this movie does that. I just got very tired of the jittery cameras and over the top explosions, when it was so apparent that the real jewels of this movie are in the more quiet, contemplative moments.
THE AUDIO
Dolby Digital - English: 5.1 EX Surround Sound - DTS ES: 6.1 Stereo Surround - English and Spanish Subtitles - Close Captioned. Tony Scott has got the market cornered on making movies with a specific sound and style (well, maybe only second to Michael Mann). Sadly, Domino is so overloaded with this artifice, that this movie, in a theater anyway, would have been too much for myself as a viewer to stand. Which probably explains why so many other viewers seemed to avoid it.
THE PACKAGE
This cover features Keira Knightley making a pouty face that either arouses or elicits laughter depending on your personality. Behind her is a shot of Mickey Rourke and Edgar Ramirez. This whole cover, from front to back, is bathed in a yellowish/orange tint. The back features some shots from the movie, a description of what the film is about, a "Special Features" listing, a cast list and some technical specs.
THE FINAL WORD
Man, I cannot say enough about how great it is to see Mickey Rourke back in action. Sure he has come to very much resemble the Marv character from Sin City, and I miss the softness that his voice used to have, but when this man cares about his craft (and I really think he cares now) there is nobody better. I also like the fact that he doesn't need to be the star of the movie anymore. He is willing to take on smaller, more character-type roles and as a result he stands out more.

I am recommending Domino mainly because I think there is enough good acting in the movie, that it rises above the muck that Tony Scott has layered over it.

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