Windy City Media Group Frontpage News

THE VOICE OF CHICAGO'S GAY, LESBIAN, BI, TRANS AND QUEER COMMUNITY SINCE 1985

home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2021-09-01
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
Donate

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Knight at the Movies: Domino and Be With Me, a Chicago Film Fest screening of note
by Richard Knight, Jr.
2005-10-12

This article shared 5031 times since Wed Oct 12, 2005
facebook twitter google +1 reddit email


Domino, Tony Scott's new film about the life story of the late bounty hunter Domino Harvey, is the equivalent of about 20 rides in a row on the tilt-a-whirl. I think theaters showing the film should post one of those warning signs: 'If you suffer from motion sickness, have heart problems, get nauseous after being visually tossed about for nigh on two hours, have a fear of excessive jump cuts, strobe-like camera effects, or moan when confronted with one of those movies where the film stock is leeched of every color but that oh-so trendy shade of urine yellow, sit this ride out.' If, on the other hand, you want the visual equivalent of being tossed inside a dryer for a prolonged period, this is the movie for you. To be sure, your enjoyment of Domino will directly depend on your reaction to those statements. Guess which one your cinema writer leaned toward?

OK, to be fair—enjoyment is different than appreciation. I have certainly 'appreciated' the expert technique of many films but hated their content. Natural Born Killers, Requiem for a Dream, and Se7en immediately spring to mind. OK, so I can't get worked up about serial killers, drug addicts, and more serial killers, but an alleged lesbian female bounty hunter? And the daughter of a movie star, to boot? With Tony Scott, director of the lesbian horror classic The Hunger at the helm and a script by twisted Donnie Darko writer-director Richard Kelly, it certainly sounded like a hot little project.

But the finished result—though it will seem a technical marvel to some ( see lead paragraph above ) —is such a convoluted mess that the good humor endeared by the opening credit 'This is based on a true story … sort of' turned rotten by the second reel.

The entire movie is laid out in a series of scenes no longer than about four minutes each. At the top of each scene, usually in voice over, we return to the framing device of bounty hunter Domino Harvey ( lesbian pin-up girl Keira Knightley ) smoking a cigarette ( the nicotine content in this film is higher than The Hunger, believe it or not ) and being interrogated by a twitchy FBI agent ( Lucy Liu ) about a heist. As the sullen Domino narrates, we cut to the appropriate locale, which after being established quickly resorts to the cinematic hijinks. Sensory overload takes over for the rest of the scene. In this manner the quasi-biography of rich girl gone bad Domino is intercut with the made-up bank heist. What looked liked interesting performances by Jacqueline Bisset, Christopher Walken, and, yes, Mickey Rourke, were obscured by the frenetic cutting favored over Harvey's story. As for Knightley, Domino is her latest tough acting tortured beauty—after similar characters in King Arthur and The Jacket—and it's wearing tissue thin.

So was Domino Harvey a lesbian? Was her father, actor Laurence Harvey bi-sexual? What made Domino become entranced by bounty hunting in the first place and what drew her to the flame? Who knows? The film can't be bothered with the complexities of these questions. Instead, it invents heterosexual romance, hypes itself with the heist framing device, and pours on the blood and bullets. I know all these biopics that are suddenly the Hollywood rage ( and get ready for lots more with Oscar season upon us ) are equal parts truth and fancy and expect the distortions. But at least give me distortions that are interesting and compelling—and Harvey's story screamed at the top of its lungs with both. This is about as bad a job as Hollywood did with Billie Holiday's life in Lady Sings the Blues where again the real person's story was considered so complex that it had to be dumbed down for audiences.

Director Tony Scott has spent his career creating in-the-moment crowd-pleasing hits stuffed with visual pyrotechnics ( beginning with Top Gun ) but interestingly, aside from his debut feature, The Hunger, I can't recall a memorable image or performance from any of them. If it has been Scott's career objective, to create disposable movies, he's done it in spades—and Domino is the biggest dump of his career.

_____

The 40th annual Chicago International Film Festival, which kicked off Oct. 6 and runs through Oct. 20, continues with two Windy City Times co-sponsored films. First up is the fascinating, sexy documentary of 1970s gay porn poster boy That Man: Peter Berlin. This probing documentary by first time director Jim Tushinski of the 'Garbo of porn' has three screenings this week: tonight at 9:15 p.m.; Thursday, at 9 p.m.; and Friday, at 5 p.m. All the screenings will be held at the AMC River East 21, 322 E. Illinois.

Be With Me, a favorite at the Cannes Film Festival, is from director Eric Khoo. Inspired by the autobiography of Theresa Chan, a 61-year-old deaf and blind woman from Singapore, the movie is a moody triptych of urban relationships in Singapore that are only tangentially connected. The first focuses on a lonely shopkeeper whose life changes when he reads the autobiography; the second on a security guard with romantic yearnings and a healthy appetite for food and internet dating; and perhaps the most satisfying ( and heartbreaking ) , a young lesbian relationship in the first stages of blossoming that darkens as the movie progresses. The film is beautifully shot and is as reflective as its evocative score. Subtitled. The film has three screenings: Monday, Oct. 17, at 9:15 p.m.' Tuesday, Oct. 18, at 4:45 p.m.; and Wednesday, Oct. 19, at 6:45 p.m. All the screenings will be held at the Landmark Century Centre Cinema, 2828 N. Clark.

Complete information on fest tickets, show times, special events are available by calling 312-332-FILM or online at the Web site www.chicagofilmfestival.com .

_____

New website: In addition to my archived columns and articles at the Web site www.windycitymediagroup.com, you can now find my cinema-related writing at my new site, www.knightatthemovies.com .

The site allows for lengthier reviews, expanded in-depth DVD title recommendations, 'Shorttakes,' a site-only capsule review feature, and the occasional film essay from my long-promised book on camp movies. Still a work in progress, I hope to add a visitor's opinion forum before too long.


This article shared 5031 times since Wed Oct 12, 2005
facebook twitter google +1 reddit email

  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

Reeling: Chicago LGBTQ+ International Film Fest names winners 2021-10-21
--From a press release - CHICAGO, Illinois — The 39th Reeling: Chicago LGBTQ+ International Film Festival today announced the winning films from its 2021 program, which included 33 feature films and 54 short films curated in nine programs. This year's submissions ...


Gay News

'Out of the Shadows, Into the Streets' LGBTQ+ Representation in the Media' panel Nov. 4 2021-10-21
--From a press release - In recent years LGBTQ+ people have increasingly seen representations of themselves, celebrations of their lives and stories, and coverage of LGBTQ+ issues across media channels. This has led to a worldwide rise in understanding, cultural acceptance, ...


Gay News

Black Alphabet returns to host annual film festival in November 2021-10-20
By Cris Villalonga-Vivoni - The Black Alphabet Film Festival (BAFF) is returning to Chicago after the pandemic forced the organization to cancel last year's event. On Nov. 5-7, BAFF will showcase 21 films and shorts about the Black queer experience ...


Gay News

SHOWBIZ Superman, TheWrap, Oscar Wilde, Billy Porter, Cher, 'Dragula' 2021-10-17
- The ongoing comic Superman: Son of Kal-El, by writer Tom Taylor and artist John Timms, launched in July and saw Jon Kent officially take up the mantle of the Man of Steel now that his father, ...


Gay News

Wizard World Comic Con returns to Chicago 2021-10-17
- After being canceled last year because of the COVID pandemic, Wizard World Comic Con Chicago returned to Rosemont's Donald E. Stephens Convention Center on Oct. 15-17—and thousands of people attended. People ranging from attendees to vendors ...


Gay News

Jury selection in Smollett trial starts Nov. 29 2021-10-15
- The Jussie Smollett saga continues. Almost three years since out actor Jussie Smollett (TV's Empire; the film Alien: Covenant) was allegedly attacked in Chicago's Streeterville neighborhood, Cook County Judge James ...


Gay News

CIFF, featuring LGBTQ+ films, running through Oct. 24 2021-10-15
- North America's longest-running competitive film festival, this year's event expands throughout Chicago with presentations at venues across the city, including at AMC River East 21; the Music Box Theatre; the Gene Siskel Film Center; special drive ...


Gay News

MOVIES Holiday comedy short centers on Muslim family and BIPOC queer relationship 2021-10-13
- The short film The Syed Family Xmas Eve Game Night follows Noor, a Muslim queer woman, and her experience with bringing her Puerto Rican partner home to meet her family for the first time. When Noor's ...


Gay News

THEATER 'A Rocky Horror Picture Party' at The Den on Oct. 30-31 2021-10-12
- Haven is presenting Science Fiction / Double Feature: A Rocky Horror Picture Party—an immersive Halloween experience that brings to life in vivid technicolor the world of the cult-classic film—directed by ...


Gay News

PBS to air queer documentary 'Things We Dare Not Do' Oct. 25 2021-10-12
- American Documentary | POV announced the national broadcast premiere of Things We Dare Not Do (Cosas que no hacemos), the second feature film from Mexican director and cinematographer Bruno Santamaría, as part of POV's 34th season. ...


Gay News

Madonna's latest concert film, Madame X, now out 2021-10-09
- The concept film to Madonna's acclaimed Madame X Tour has debuted in the United States Latin America, Australia, the Nordics and Canada exclusively on Paramount+, the streaming service from ViacomCBS. Fans outside these markets can watch ...


Gay News

MOVIES Colman Domingo to star in Bayard Rustin biopic 2021-10-09
- LGBTQ+ actor Colman Domingo—who has been in movies such as Ma Rainey's Black Bottom and Candyman, and TV shows ranging from Fear the Walking Dead to The Big Gay Sketch Show—has landed the lead role the ...


Gay News

Filmmakers Bennett Singer, Patrick Sammon talk new documentary Cured 2021-10-07
- Producer-directors Bennett Singer and Patrick Sammon have created a new LGBTQ documentary: Cured. The film tells the story of the LGBTQ activists, allies and events surrounding the American Psychiatric Association's ...


Gay News

Sisters in Cinema, DocuClub providing consulting opportunities to filmmakers 2021-10-07
- Sisters in Cinema—a Chicago-based 501(C)3 that aims to center and celebrate Black girls, women and gender non-conforming media makers—and DocuClub, a work-in-progress screening series, have entered into a strategic partnership ...


Gay News

Int'l Film Fest to premiere queer Muslim film directed by Chicagoan Fawzia Mirza 2021-10-05
--From a press release - LOS ANGELES CA - THE SYED FAMILY XMAS EVE GAME NIGHT will have its U.S. premiere at the 57th edition of the Chicago International Film Festival running October 13 - 24, 2021. This comes on the ...


 



Copyright © 2021 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 
 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS







Sponsor
Sponsor


 

Sponsor


Donate


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.