25 September 2023

Ocean’s 8

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Reviewed by Victor Rebikoff.

Director: Gary Ross, Village Roadshow Pictures, M 110 Minutes.

It is 11 years since Danny Ocean (George Clooney) carried out his final casino heist in ‘Ocean’s 13’ leaving it to his estranged sister Debbie (Sandra Bullock –‘The Heat’) to carry on the tradition following her infamous brother’s apparent death.

No sooner is Debbie released from a five-year prison sentence when she reunites with close friend and partner-in-crime Lou (Cate Blanchett –‘Truth’) revealing her planned heist of the century to take place at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Together with Lou she wastes little time in recruiting an all-female crew, commencing with computer hacker Nine Ball (Rihanna –‘Annie’), local fashion designer Rose Weil (Helena Bonham Carter –‘Suffragette’) and petty pickpocketer, Constance Wong (Awkwafina -‘Bad Neighbours 2’),

In making up the seven members of Debbie’s team are former friends Amita an Indian jewellery-maker (Mindy Kaling ‘The Night Before’) and Tammy (Sarah Paulson –‘Carol’) an established disposer of stolen goods – with the eighth turning out to be a complete surprise.

The daring strategy includes stealing the $150 million Cartier necklace that is to be worn by celebrity model Daphne Kluger (Anne Hathaway –‘Colossal’) at the Metropolitan Gala Ball, once swayed to do so by Debbie’s fashionista compadre Rose.

With everything in place, the feisty females proceed to make fools of the security personnel present, especially curator and ex-boyfriend Claude Becker (Richard Armitage –‘The Hobbit’) who Debbie blames for her imprisonment, including the insurance investigator John Frazier (James Corden –‘One Chance’).

Once the heist is over, Debbie gathers her diverse group for a celebration where she reveals the extent of their success, then splits the proceeds from the extensive jewellery theft between the eight participants before going their separate ways.

In many respects ‘Hunger Games’ director, Gary Ross has made a more entertaining movie than those featuring Clooney and company, mainly due to an enjoyable storyline, the diversity of characters and their delightful performances spearheaded by Bullock and Blanchett.

Hopefully there will be a sequel that will see a return of most of the female crew that will include both leading ladies (Bullock/Blanchett) together with Wong, Rihanna, Paulson and Bonham Carter, involved again in a non-casino setting.

Vic’s Verdict: 3 ½ Stars

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