Domino

DVDs and MoviesHuntingRentalsMoviesEntertainmentDeathTony Scott

Tony Scott's "Domino" is "based on a true story. Sort of." It's also a movie, sort of.

Like the last Tony Scott Experience, "Man on Fire," "Domino" is a 35mm replication of intense cerebral distress, composed entirely of saturated colors, incoherent flash cuts and a soundtrack that's either shrieking or exploding. It's not so much a movie as a two-hour, seven-minute seizure.

Somewhere in there is the highly questionable biography of Domino Harvey, daughter of "Manchurian Candidate" actor Laurence, who wound up working as a bounty hunter in Los Angeles. That is factually true, but pretty much everything else about the movie is highly questionable -- like the suggestion that Laurence Harvey died in 1993, for instance, when he actually died two decades earlier. The tweaking presumably allows Keira Knightley, already a decade too young to play the adult Domino, to remember his funeral.

Lots of things don't quite make sense, and we haven't even got to the plot, which is built around $10 million in stolen Mob money that Domino and her bounty-hunting buddies, played by Mickey Rourke and Edgar Ramirez, are trying to recover, which somehow expands to involve reality-TV producers, a pack of vengeful mobsters, a quartet of surly DMV employees, Jerry Springer and "Beverly Hills 90210" stars Brian Austin Green and Ian Ziering.

It's as though the director learned all the wrong lessons from "Man on Fire," and doesn't even care: He just pumps his film up with more and more violence, more and more titillation, more and more incoherence, until there's nothing there approaching heart or soul. (The real Domino died of an accidental overdose of painkillers earlier this year. The movie is dedicated to her memory, but doesn't otherwise mention her death.)

The credited screenwriter, by the way, is Richard Kelly, who is the writer and director of "Donnie Darko." That movie used ambiguity and incoherence as storytelling tools, and the result was a complicated, intricate masterpiece. "Domino" is decidedly not, leaving us to wonder whether Kelly's script was butchered, or Scott was just too dumb to fit it all together in the editing room. Not that it really matters. Five minutes in, you'll be too stupefied to care about any of it.

New Line's enhanced-widescreen DVD is the latest in its Platinum Series, which means a decent amount of special features.

There are two supplemental audio tracks -- a commentary from Scott and screenwriter Richard Kelly, and an intriguing assemblage of development meetings in which Scott, Kelly, executive producer Zach Schiff-Abrams and special guest star Tom Waits (who appears in the film as well as on its soundtrack) hash out the finer points of the film. It's fascinating from a conceptual point, but casual listeners won't be held riveted or anything.

For a Platinum title, the making-of material is kind of thin: "I Am a Bounty Hunter: Domino Harvey's Life" spends 20 minutes profiling the real Harvey -- and includes an audio interview with her conducted by screenwriter Kelly -- but includes just a sliver of behind-the-scenes material. And the other featurette, "Bounty Hunting on Acid: Tony Scott's Visual Style," spend 10 minutes examining Scott's spastic cinematographic approach, without ever quite mentioning his colossal stylistic debt to Oliver Stone and Robert Richardson's truly revolutionary work on "Natural Born Killers," or any of their subsequent collaborations.

The disc also includes seven deleted scenes, viewable with Scott's optional commentary, and a pair of theatrical trailers.

STUDIO: New Line Home Entertainment
RELEASE DATE: February 21
RATING: R
PRICE: $29.95
TIME: 126 minutes
DVD EXTRAS: English and Spanish subtitles; audio commentaries; deleted scenes; production featurettes.
INTERNET SITE: dominomovie.com

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
Comments
Loading