Who would have thought that a movie inspired by the true story about a beautiful young model (her father an actor, her mother a fashion model) turned bounty hunter could be so bland. It would seem as if there were a story somewhere in this movie, but whatever subtlety or nuance the actual “Domino” may have had was lost on this screenplay.
I loved Tony Scott’s Man on Fire, but this is uncomfortably like watching the spiritual successor to the earlier movie. Only not in a good way.
The visual style of Man on Fire carries over. The jumpy filming, the odd contrast and colors, and the almost random captioning (oddly placed introductions and descriptions that float in and out of the scenes) are even more prominent in Domino. But while it worked in Man on Fire, this time around it seems like a lack of creative spirit instead of a director’s kind of organic style.
There are some things that happen in this movie that just don’t belong. Things that pop up but don’t make sense and certainly don’t have much effect on the rest of the story.
Like Kiera Knightly’s lap dance in the early going. She looks great stripped down to bra and panties, but the effect on me was just an almost whiplash inducing eye roll.
The Jerry Springer Show segment is nearly as useless. The conversation about appropriate racial sub-grouping is sort of funny, but it takes up a chunk of time without adding anything of use.
Sadly, Knightly doesn’t have what it takes to be good in the role of thrill-seeking, edgy beauty-queen turned dangerous bounty-hunter. She acts like she’s acting tough—all bravado and bluster instead of the calm confidence of the woman she portrayed (seen, just prior to her death, in interviews and documentary footage in the DVD’s extra features).
Most of the rest of the acting is at very least decent, though. For whatever it’s worth.
A poor script, sub-par direction, and a miscast lead add up to a mediocre movie. And that’s being generous.
On a positive note, it did make me want to see Denzel Washington’s superb turn in Man on Fire.