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14 October 2005

cable bait

If you go see "Domino," you should ask for a discount because Keira Knightley is usually not wearing many clothes. (Image filched from blog DarkMatters: The Mind of Matt. Matt watches a lot of movies.)

So it shouldn't be a total loss, click here to see Keira Knightley as Domino Harvey giving an Evil Criminal a Lap Dance.

VLEEPTRON recently posted an alert for an upcoming biopic based on the life of the late Domino Harvey, daughter of British movie star Laurence Harvey. We can all get off our tenterhooks; the film has been released.

Gannett News Service
Friday 14 October 2005

'Domino' falls like a house of cards

By Jack Garner
Gannett News Service

If you're looking for a veteran director who typifies style over substance, look no further than Tony Scott. His list of films is a virtual showcase of flash and dash and cash -- from "Top Gun" to "Days of Thunder," from "The Last Boy Scout" to "Crimson Tide." Yet, few linger in the mind or heart after the heat dies down. ("Man on Fire" might be the rare exception.)

When it comes to combining substance with style, Tony could take a few lessons from his older brother, Ridley.

• Cast: Keira Knightley, Mickey Rourke, Delroy Lindo, Christopher Walken, Edgar Ramirez.

• Running time: 128 minutes.

• Rating: R; strong violence, pervasive language, sexual content, nudity and drug use.

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"Domino" is the latest Tony Scott enterprise to blast us away with pizzazz, but leave us with an empty feeling.

The screen explodes with unnaturally tinted colors, grainy textures, reflective surfaces, and lots of sheen, sped up with impossibly fast cuts, odd angles and jarring jumps. "Domino" seems edited in a Cuisinart.

If you're looking at a movie that you couldn't possibly take seriously, like "Days of Thunder" or "The Last Boy Scout," high-energy style serves some sort of purpose. At least there's something on the screen.

But, with "Domino," Scott buries a potentially fascinating real-life subject under wave after wave of flashy, ultra-violent distraction. You'll want to catch your breath and reflect on this odd story. But Scott never gives you the chance, despite having 133 minutes of run time to play with.

"Domino," you see, tells a story based on fact, about the free-spirited daughter of English actor Laurence Harvey (of "The Manchurian Candidate"). A former model and all-round party girl, Domino found a bizarre career calling, as a Los Angeles bounty hunter. Armed to the teeth, she and two cohorts pursued various unsavory bail-jumpers.

Though she looked more like Jodie Foster in real life, she's played here by Keira Knightley. Her partners are her mentor, Ed (a typically seeded Mickey Rourke) and the younger Choco (Edgar Ramirez).

As the film opens, Domino is involved in a deadly standoff between her trio and a heavily armed mother and son who've stolen a substantial stash of drug cash. During the standoff, Domino's story is told in fragmented flashbacks. However, they're so chopped up, the result is little more than the barest outline of what should have been substantial story-telling. The whys and hows of this young woman's odyssey are never revealed.

"Domino" also shies away from the real character's darker side -- the frequent drug rehabs and the ultimate fatal drug overdose. Instead, we get a splashy and generally unnecessary Los Angeles variation of "La Femme Nikita" that sells us short of the real-life Domino.

And all those camera swirls and quick cuts may give you a headache. This particular style over substance isn't even good style.

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