Review: Ocean’s 8

Ocean’s 8.

It’s been awhile since the latest trilogy of Ocean’s films and now we’re getting a spinoff focusing on Danny Ocean’s sister and featuring an ensemble cast of women. It’s a pretty interesting cast though a predictable premise, so can this movie make its own footprint in the heist genre?

The gist.

Debbie Ocean (Sandra Bullock) just did five years in prison and spent the entire time formulating a heist that is bound to go perfectly. She immediately brings together a group of talented women to make it happen, including Cate Blanchett, Sarah Paulson, Mindy Kaling, Rhianna, Helena Bonham Carter, and the YouTuber Awkwafina. Their goal? To steal a giant necklace from the neck of Anne Hathaway. We also get Richard Armitage as Ocean’s ex-lover and a brief though hilarious stint by James Corden.

Do you need to know anything about the past films? It’d be helpful and there’s a few cameos you need to look out for, but it’s not essential.

What works?

The heist genre is a well-oiled machine, it’s been done so many times. And the Ocean’s films usually take very little liberties, but instead stick to the formula and rely on their actor’s charisma to hold the movie up. Here, you can expect the same sort of thing. The plot is predictable but it’s the stars that really carry the film.

Sandra Bullock as the lead gets much more to do than her brother did in his films. She gets an interesting backstory, plenty of motivation to pull off this heist, and quite a few quiet moments with her costars. Out of the other women, Sarah Paulson, Mindy Kaling, and Cate Blanchett stood out the most to me, though kudos to Helena Bonham Carter for being much palatable than in other films.

The heist that the movie builds up to is also really enjoyable, very reminiscent of the other Ocean’s films in all the right ways.

What doesn’t work?

While it’s great that the movie’s heist works, it does feel a little too familiar. There isn’t really anything surprising about the climax of the film or the road leading up to it. This is the epitome of an average heist movie, though many of you will be totally fine with that.

And while the climax is fun and energetic, unfortunately the build up to the heist is much slower than you’d expect. This movie steals a lot from the other Ocean’s films but didn’t take much of the color or flair that livened up the other films in the first two acts. They benefited from a Vegas setting (2/3 times anyways) that kept things fun and upbeat, while the setting of a museum in this film doesn’t lend the same sort of kinetic energy.

Overall…

This movie feels familiar, from top to bottom. It doesn’t do anything unique with the tropes of the heist movie and instead carbon copies what the Clooney films did, though sometimes not as spectacular. What we end up with is a pretty average heist movie, highlighted by some great performances and a bit of a slow burn.

 

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About adamryen

Entertainment. Gaming. Dreaming.
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