Roll me over, Domino
Which, come to think of it, is sorta just like The Amityville Horror or the Iraqi War.
Anyway, even then it's a hard slog. Still, it's easier to swallow this cinematic turd as a hopped-up cartoon than to try to take seriously the over-the-top pretensions of director Tony "Top Gun" Scott's "impressionistic interpretation" on the life of beautiful public school-educated English girl turned ass-kicking gun-toting LA bounty hunter Domino Harvey.
Yes, Domino Harvey was the daughter of acclaimed actor Laurence Harvey, and yes, after stints as a fashion model and pampered Beverly Hills brat, Domino Harvey did indeed become a take-charge Los Angeles bounty hunter, kicking down doors and hauling assholes back to jail. But evidently that wasn't enough for the ham-fisted film maker and his screenwriters, Richard Kelly and Steve Barancik-- nope, they had to get "creative."
First mistake? The miscast yummy-as-ice-cream Kiera Knightley as the hard, thin-lipped, chisel-faced Domino (in the DVD special feature interview, she looks like an ex-Hitler Youth member). The real Domino, while undoubtedly attractive in a chilly fashion-model Eurotrash way, was also saddled with a major drug problem, a penchant for violence and more issues than a magazine stand -- a far cry from the pouty-lipped, puppy-eyed girl-next-door Knightley, a usually more-than-competent actor, who portrays Harvey as an essentially good but mixed-up kid. Picture Bambi with a gun trying to over-compensate by screaming a lot.
Oooh, the angst...
But Scott's biggest mistake was dumping the psychological complexity and dark messiness of Domino's life, and trying to transform it into a dumbed-down, tricked-up guns-a-blazing caper flick that -- ironically -- came out a noisy, convoluted mess anyway. But whereas Domino's contradictions and complexity were the product of real-life, the film's sloppiness reeks of simple cinematic ineptness, weak writing and glaring artificiality.
So instead of something like the similarly themed, flawed but ultimately compelling character study of THE HUNTER starring the late Steve McQueen, we're subjected to a frenetic blend of redundant and frequently laughable dialogue, pointless montages, artsy-fartsy jump-cut edits, gratuitous violence that gives gratuitous violence a bad name, vapid narration and every other annoying ham-handed straight-outta-film school gimmick you can think of, the net result about as pretentious and unwatchable a film as you could get from a "name" director, possibly the stupidest crime flick since Brian diPalma's equally brain-dead FEMME FATALE.
Supposedly, before she died (of heart failure, in her bathtub, supposedly full of enough drugs to stun a rhinoceros, at the ripe old age of 35, shortly before the film was released), the real-life Domino gave a thumbs up to this portrayal.
Which may just be all the proof you need that she was seriously fucked up.
But no matter how fucked up she was, she deserved better than this...
(By the way, yes, I'm alive. Sorry about that... as I suspected, this blog stuff is as time-consuming as everything else in my life, but I will try to do better --HAH! I've said THAT before!!!! --- , on the off-chance somebody actually gives a damn...)