Domino


Directed by: Tony Scott
Written by:Richard Kelly
Starring: Keira Knightley, Mickey Rouke, Edgar Ramirez, Delroy Lindo, Riz Abbasi, Mo’Nique
Released: December 1, 2005
Grade: B

Domino Harvey (Knightley) is a bounty hunter.  Her job is to capture accused criminals who have skipped bail.  It may sound like another far-fetched storyline but bounty hunting is a legitimate profession in the United States.  They are usually employed by bail bondsmen and they have rights which aren’t available to a police officer (including entering a property without a warrant).

The hard-hitting Domino wanted to get into the industry “for a bit of fun” and works with two others – Ed (Rourke) and Choco (Ramirez).  They are a successful team and get much of their work from bail bondsman Claremont Williams (Lindo).

The film is loosely based on a true story and the real Domino Harvey died in September 2005 of a drug overdose.  Domino is dedicated to her memory.  Keira Knightley is exciting in the leading role and the merciless, tough persona is something I haven’t seen from her before.  She won’t be winning awards but it silences those (including myself) who saw her as an actress with a very limited range.  It’s worth emphasising because higher profile actresses who have tried to break into the action genre in recent years (Halle Berry, Kate Beckinsale, Angelina Jolie) have been less convincing.

A story develops and it concerns our three bounty hunters and a conspiracy they have become entangled in.  $10m has been stolen from the armoured car of a casino boss who has close ties with the mob.  Claremont has employed Domino, Ed and Choco to find those responsible but exactly who is Claremont working for and why are they involved in this unusual assignment?

Answers will be revealed but it may require Panadol when you see how Tony Scott (Man On Fire, Spy Game) has directed this film.  The camera is never at rest and the fast-paced editing makes it difficult to follow.  Scott’s style gives new meaning to the term “motion” picture.  It looks cool but the continual flashes of light and changes in colour irritated me at times.

It’s predominantly an action flick but there are a few laughs thanks to the arrival of two soap stars (playing themselves) and a television executive.  Fans of Beverley Hills 90210 might find it even funnier.