Heist sadly misses a sparkling flourish
A POSITIVE fuss quite rightly greeted news that there was to be an all-female reboot of the Ocean’s Eleven franchise.
However, now that Ocean’s 8 is finally here, there is little more fuss that needs to be made.
Unfortunately, this markedly average movie softly fizzles when it should intensely sparkle.
While the “modern’’, malecentric trilogy of Ocean productions were first and foremost heist movies, they were also hangout movies.
In a corny yet catchy way, it was kinda cool to be cruising along with George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon and their posse, forever cracking wise while cracking safes.
Sadly, the all-important hangout factor never really comes into play once you’ve sized up the Ocean’s 8 line-up.
For a production harnessing star power of considerable luminosity — from Sandra Bullock and Cate Blanchett through to Anne Hathaway, Rihanna and a roving pack of cameo-ing couture queens — it is disappointing to see how little a glow comes off happenings here.
It is certainly no fault of any individual cast member, nor the gathered ensemble as a whole.
The blame for the middling outcome of Ocean’s 8 can only be levelled at a drab, tightly formatted screenplay.
Sandra Bullock is Debbie Ocean, younger sister of George Clooney’s now dearly departed Danny, and thereby the brains of the new movie’s jewel-snatching outfit.
Debbie is fresh out of jail and wants back in on the gemgrabbing biz, so she quickly appoints Lou (Cate Blanchett) as her second-in-command and all-round cynical sounding board.
Soon enough, the pair enlist the services of a ditzy Irish fashion designer (Helena Bonham Carter), a tough-talking hacker (Rihanna, wasted here just frowning at a laptop), a happygo-lucky stone cutter (Mindy Kaling) and a few others.
From here, all roads lead to New York’s fabled Met Gala, where these law-breakin’ ladies will be looking to lift a $150 million necklace off the throat of a trend-setting celeb (Hathaway).
The heist itself is functionally satisfying, but not all that exciting. The stakes just never seem all that high, especially when the filmmakers must keep downing tools to cram in some crummy walk-ons from the likes of Maria Sharapova, Katie Holmes, Serena Williams and Anna Wintour.