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Review Domino (2019): Brian De Palma wasn't too happy with how this film was made!

genre: action, crime, thriller

Domino is the latest film directed by Brian De Palma. Even when he has stated that this wasn't his project. Apparently different versions have been made. The original version has a running time of 148 minutes. The version I and I guess everyone else has seen is around 90 minutes. That means more than an hour got cut. I don't know about you but that explains a lot.

When Domino starts you sense a whole lot more is going on with the characters we are introduced to. Domino begins as a murder mystery full of style, good camera work and red herrings but ends up as a generic cops and robbers flick. Granted the robbers are Jihadic terrorists but they easily could have been right nationalists, angry farmers or post service employees. It doesn't really matter. They are bad guys who are extremely slippery and efficient in killing people. Something tells me that Brian had a completely different story in mind only we never really got to see what he envisioned other than the early twenty minutes where puzzle pieces have been put in place which should have been put together at the end of the film. 

But for whatever reason the Danish producers didn't think was interesting enough. Did something get lost in translation? Or had they deliberately duped Brian? I really hope the truth comes out eventually since I want to watch the version Brian had envisioned. As it is now I only went along with it due to Brian, how the film starts and it's cast. The whole cast is wasted since each of them deserve to be in a better film. Even Nikolaj Coster-Waldau seems more like a side character than the lead. Don't even get me started on Carice van Houten and Guy Pearce. They clearly were under the impression they were bigger players but mostly seem like glorified cameo's. It feels like that the sub plot with Carice had more substance and should have been more prominent. As it is now her involvement is almost comical. Soap opera comical. Sure Brian is not a perfect director. But even his worst films have that something special. Especially when it comes to intrigue and his characters. You can't honestly believe that Brian would not have more to tell about them. I choose to believe him as his record of excellent masterpieces speak for themselves.

That being said, Domino is not bad by any means. Flawed of course but actually bad to a point it's chore to sit through? Not at all. But it does seem like the obvious multilayered film is cut down to a generic action flick that especially in the finale makes a joke of everything that transpired before. At least it ends without me hating the lead or any of the other characters. Can I recommend this? If you want to see every Brian De Palma film ever made then certainly. For everyone else there is not that much going on. You can see the same in a single episode of NCIS. 

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