OCEAN’S 8 – Film Review

Sandra Bullock portrays leading lady Debbie Ocean in Ocean’s 8, the brand new film that serves as a sequel to the 2007 film Ocean’s Thirteen.

Debbie Ocean (Sandra Bullock), the sister of Danny Ocean (portrayed by George Clooney in the original Ocean’s trilogy) is a woman who deeply enjoys the life of con artistry. She quickly learns that an extremely expensive diamond necklace will be worn at the upcoming Met Gala event by a woman named Daphne Kluger (Anne Hathaway). After discovering this news, Ocean, Lou (Cate Blanchett), Nine Ball (Rihanna), Amita (Mindy Kaling) and a plethora of other con artists team up in an effort to steal the diamond necklace to earn a fortune.

I have always been a big fan of the 2001 film Ocean’s Eleven, directed by Steven Soderbergh (Ocean’s 8 marks the first time Soderbergh does not direct an Ocean’s film, although he produces the film). To me, the original 1960 film titled Ocean’s 11 is a good film, but I still to this day prefer the Soderbergh helmed 2001 remake. The two sequels to 2001’s Ocean’s Eleven, Ocean’s Twelve (2004), and Ocean’s Thirteen (2007) have always just been mediocre to me. So, where does Ocean’s 8 rank for me? I certainly like this film significantly better than Ocean’s Twelve and Ocean’s Thirteen, but it unfortunately does not beat out the 2001 film for me.

Sarah Paulson (left) as Tammy, Sandra Bullock (middle) as Debbie Ocean, and Rihanna (right) as Nine Ball in Ocean’s 8 (2018).

The cast of this new sequel film is absolutely brilliant. Bullock is amazing here as Debbie Ocean, the lead con artist woman in the film. Alongside Bullock is a wide variety of cast members such as the aforementioned Cate Blanchett, Rihanna, and Mindy Kaling. Every single actor in this film does an exceptionally good job, and it is amazing to see how well their chemistry works on screen.

At certain moments, the film’s editing can be a bit jarring. You can be extremely invested in one scene, and you believe it will go on for about a minute or so longer, but then it abruptly cuts to a new scene. Seeing this technique implemented in the film left me extremely confused. Speaking of being extremely invested, the film does not have a boring scene. Sure, some scenes are more entertaining than others, but that does not mean that Ocean’s 8 is a boring film. It’s just that this film unfortunately feels so similar to the 2001 film in nearly every way.

Maybe that is why this film is so entertaining to watch – it has all the elements of Ocean’s Eleven (2001) implemented, however, there comes a major problem with this – it is no longer original anymore. It would have been nice to have seen this film’s script have its own ideas and not be so self-reliant on practically recreating many scenes from the 2001 film.

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Anne Hathaway (left) as Daphne Kluger, and Helena Bonham Carter (right) as Rose Weil in Ocean’s 8 (2018).

This film also does not really have too many intense scenes, which was a bit disappointing considering that I found 2001’s Ocean’s Eleven to be a remarkably suspenseful thrill-ride. There is only one scene in Ocean’s 8 that had a sliver of tension in there, and that scene was one of the best in the entire film.

The comedy in Ocean’s 8 does work for the most part, which was a great touch to the film. There were only a few instances in which I found jokes to be not all that funny.

Furthermore, without giving any spoilers whatsoever, the ending to Ocean’s 8 feels extraordinarily abrupt. It feels like the closing scene should have gone on for perhaps just a minute or two more, but it does not. When the screen cut to black in the theatre, I was left baffled, as I was unsure if that was actually where they ended it, and, sure enough they did.

Ocean’s 8 is an undeniably enjoyable, breezy watch with great performances all across the board. Where it falters however, is its originality factor, due to a script that feels all too familiar to the 2001 film.

To watch my video review for Ocean’s 8, please click this link: https://youtu.be/ggQ55mAuPe4

Overall Grade: B-

MPAA Rating: PG-13 for language, drug use, and some suggestive content

Cast: Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Anne Hathaway, Mindy Kaling

Directed by: Gary Ross

Distributed by: Warner Bros. Pictures

Running Time: 110 minutes

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