Lack of smarts hin­ders all-girl heist re­make

Broome Advertiser - - HAPPENINGS - Ocean’s 8 San­dra Bul­lock, Cate Blanchett Di­rec­tor Gary Ross

Steven Soder­bergh’s Ocean’s Eleven re­make is a hard movie to live up to.

But it is un­de­ni­able that even the near-per­fect Eleven was miss­ing some­thing pretty ma­jor: women.

You know, be­sides Ju­lia Roberts, that black­jack dealer and the one ex­otic dancer. So why not, 17 years later, fix that egre­gious over­sight ?

San­dra Bul­lock an­chors the cast as Deb­bie Ocean, the never-be­fore­men­tioned sis­ter of Ge­orge Clooney’s Danny Ocean, who has taken up the fam­ily busi­ness and prefers to work with­out “hims.”

“Hers,” she later ex­plains, can go un­no­ticed.

Deb­bie’s plan is to steal a $150 mil­lion di­a­mond neck­lace. She and her team have to first in­fil­trate the or­bit of a va­pid celeb, Daphne Kluger (Anne Hath­away), and con­vince her to wear said neck­lace to the Met Gala, where they’ll steal it and di­vide the earn­ings ac­cord­ingly.

If you’ve seen Soder­bergh’s Ocean’s Eleven, you’ve ba­si­cally seen Ocean’s 8 too. Di­rec­tor and co-writer Gary Ross (The Hunger Games) fol­lows fa­mil­iar story beats.

There was a dan­ger to Ocean’s Eleven and a thrill in see­ing that team suc­ceed. Here, none of the women seem to have any fal­li­bil­ity and you never find your­self doubt­ing whether or not they can pull it off. Per­haps there is some­thing sub­ver­sive to the idea that all Deb­bie has to do is so­cial shame two se­cu­rity guys from en­ter­ing a women’s rest room, but we’re there for some­thing more elab­o­rate too.

That’s kind of the over­all prob­lem. It’s all pred­i­cated on the fact that women are of­ten un­der­es­ti­mated.

But it’s also un­der­es­ti­mated the au­di­ence who still should be en­ti­tled to a smart, fun heist, no mat­ter who is pulling it off.

Pic­ture: Barry Wetcher

Cate Blanchett as Lou, He­lena Bon­ham Carter as Rose and San­dra Bul­lock as Deb­bie Ocean in a scene from Ocean’s 8.

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