Tony Scott’s latest action/adventure feature film is based on a true story, sort of, about a woman named Domino Harvey, whose father, Laurence Harvey (Butterfield 8, The Manchurian Candidate) was a popular screen actor in the 1960s, and whose mother is Paulene Stone, a former cover girl from the sixties. Domino was a child of privilege who rebelled against her English boarding school and Beverly Hills upbringing. After a brief stint on the runway as a model, she ended up becoming a bounty hunter in Los Angeles.
The film is told with quickly cut flashbacks while Domino (Keira Knightley) is interrogated by ice-cold FBI agent, Taryn Miles (Lucy Liu). After we learn about Domino’s rebellious youth, via Scott’s use of yellow and brown filters, she decides to attend a seminar on becoming a bounty hunter, brilliantly led by bail bondsman Claremont Williams III (Delroy Lindo) and bounty hunter, Ed Mosbey (Mickey Rourke). Attendees pay $99 to learn that the seminar is a scam and Mosbey and his sidekick, Choco (Edgar Ramirez), try to make a run with the cash, only to be stopped by a knife-throwing Domino in an alley way. Domino tells the two men she wants to be a bounty hunter and isn’t afraid of anything. She hops into Mosbey’s beat up El Camino and they are off to arrest their first fugitive, an L.A. gangbanger who sends the trio into a Latino gang house with more guns than the local National Guard unit. The scene ends with Domino performing a provocative lap dance for one of the gangbangers.
Richard Kelly’s screenplay starts to do a lot of confusing zigs and zags as the bounty hunter trio are now being courted by a television executive, Mark Heiss (Christopher Walken), for a reality television show called “Bounty Brigade,” starring former Beverly Hills 90210 stars, Brian Austin Green and Ian Ziering. The bounty hunters agree to do the show, which entails them driving around Los Angeles in a flashily painted Winnebago driven by an Afghani man called Alf (Rizwan Abbasi). Heiss and his faithful assistant, Kimmie (Mena Suvari), follow the bounty trio in another Winnebago, filming them making busts, which involves a fair amount of ass kicking by each of the bounty hunters. We learn that Mosbey lost a toe in a prison riot in Angola, Louisiana and that Choco was taken in by Mosbey shortly after being released from a juvenile detention center. When questioned by Brian Austin Green about the best training for being a bounty hunter, Mosbey quickly replies, “Try prison.”
Things start to get complicated when the bounty hunters are forced to arrest four men who allegedly robbed an armored car that was transporting $3 million in cash from a casino in Las Vegas to a mafia organization in Los Angeles. An older, less cynical, Dabney Coleman plays the casino/hotel owner, Drake Bishop. A surprise appearance by Tom Waits as a fundamentalist preacher who drives a Cadillac El Dorado along with supporting roles by singer Macy Gray, comedienne Mo'Nique and Jacqueline Bisset give this film some additional texture. The film opens in the UK on the 14th of October.
British-born director Tony Scott was the brother of director Ridley Scott and worked closely with him in their production company for film and television, both having made their names in the advertising business before moving onto glossy features for cinema. He shocked Hollywood by committing suicide by jumping from a bridge in Los Angeles for reasons that were never disclosed.