Domino Blu-ray impressions
I wasn’t particularly impressed with Domino, Tony Scott’s loose biopic of real-life bounty hunter Domino Harvey, when I first saw it back in 2006. In fact, my overall recommendation as regards this giddy fever dream was “Save your money for real drugs.” That said, it’s not a film I forgot in a hurry, and, when it was released on Blu-ray last month, I found myself with a hankering to see it again. My copy arrived on Monday, and I watched it last night. Admittedly, I enjoyed it somewhat more than on my first viewing, but I still found the stylistic elements (particularly the self-conscious editing style and eye-searing contrast) irritating and the script muddled and of the patchwork variety. Despite this, though, it managed to hold my attention throughout, and on some level Keira Knightley is actually quite effective as the gun-toting bounty hunter with a silver spoon in her mouth.
As for the disc itself, I can’t say I was expecting a great deal, given that it is the joint product of Warner and New Line, who together hold one of the most dubious track records in the HDM world. Much to my surprise, therefore, Domino actually turned out to be a very impressive-looking release. It’s sometimes tough to rate image quality with a film as stylised as this, particularly given the deliberately unnatural colours and contrast, the rarely-static camera and the deliberate “degradation” techniques such as the introduction of colour bleeding (see Example 13). Still, my overall impression is that what we’re seeing here is mostly excellent and a faithful representation of the film’s intended look. Unfortunately, a frequent Warner shortcoming - inadequate bit rate - rears its ugly head here in the form of a smattering of compression artefacts (see Example 8 for the most noticeable instance). Otherwise, though, it’s all good. 9.5/10
studio: New Line/Warner; country: USA; region code: ABC; codec: VC-1;
file size: 18.5GB; average bit rate (including audio): 20.8 Mbit/sec