I unfortunately (or should I say fortunately) forgot to return my response card to the video club, which I am member of, on time, so they send me this video. I didnít take any interest on it at first (it lay at my living room for a week), then one day, feeling bored and with nothing else to do (Michael Schumacher again won in F1, ugh), I decided to take a stab at it. Oh boy, Iíve never had so much fun watching a movie. It caught me from the start and never let me go. I havenít seen the original Oceanís 11 with Frank Sinatra and his Rat Pack, but for whatever means, this remake is a damn good one.Danny Ocean has just been released from prison, but with one plan in mind, which is to steal three casinos, The Bellagio, The Mirage, and The MGM, all owned by the ruthless Terry Benedict (Andy Garcia). Why 3 you ask? Well, because all three connect to a underground vault, which, at the time of a boxing fight, the bets will manage to store about 165 million dollars, which is what heís intending to steal. To do this, he teams up with longtime friend Rusty Ryan (Brad Pitt) to find the people for the job. They come up with 11 people: Virgil and Turk Malloy (Scott Caan and Casey Affleck) con man Saul Bloom (Carl Reiner), explosives expert Basher Tarr (Don Cheadle), blackjack dealer Frank Catton (Bernie Mac), circus acrobat Yen (Shaobo Qin), surveillance specialist Livingston Dell (Eddie Jemison) and rookie Linus Caldwell (Matt Damon). Oh, and the most valuable help will come from Reuben Tishkoff (Elliot Gould) who happens to be partners with Terry Benedict. After that, the plan is onÖ Oh, I forgot, in the balance is also Dannyís ex-wife, Tess who now hangs out with Terry. Figure it out.
"Steals The Audienceís Applause With Fashion"
Gosh, gosh, gosh, Steven Soderbergh does it again. Heís an interesting director to watch. He has a rare eye for entertainment and depth, but this time, he solely focuses on entertainment rather than depth. Yes, I know, the movie lacks character development, and characters at times play like cartoons. But hey, face it man, this movie was fun. FUN. FUN. Thatís a long lost word in the Hollywood Industry. Todayís word is now MONEY, which shouldnít be, but Soderbergh, with some stylish directing, and a pretty solid script by Ted Griffin finally changed all for at least once in a movie like this. Griffin offers a series of twists that just leave you in awe. The entire casino heist act, which involves most of the movie has to be the most clever piece of filmmaking Iíve ever seen, and just when you think a clichť is about to appear, voila, another twist comes along and once again, youíre left in amazement. Things that at first didnít make much sense come out as the most important things in the movie. Intelligence is the word here. The film is one of the most intelligent Iíve seen since Memento, the script guides you over places not often touched by many movies, and reaches a different new ground never touched before. Where as in other casino heist films like the shitty 3000 Miles To Graceland, the only solution to bust out of a casino is via a shootout, Oceanís 11 goes to a different, and more daring and more intelligent solution, and once the dust settled, I was left with the word: WOW.
See, this is what filmmaking is all about, to have fun watching a film, to entertain ourselves, to feel for once happy while watching a film, and this film does exactly that, and you get your moneyís worth.
The acting was top notch despite some shallowness. George Clooney once again steals the show as Danny Ocean, finally the guy is really making some great movies. Brad Pitt is also excellent as his sidekick. Andy Garcia was pretty interesting and rare as the baddie Terry Benedict. Matt Damon was alright, and so was the rest of the cast. Thereís one character that bothered me though, which was Tessí Julia Roberts. Though I admit she was an important part of the film, I wouldíve liked a LOT more development on this character, and especially lift Juliaís hopes up more since, she seems bored with the role and her character suggests more of a cameo appearance. Thankfully, I had no problem with it.In the end, I find it hardly for you not to like this movie. Whatís not to like? Other than Robertsí shallowness and character development, this film is surely one fun ride, and I absolutely recommend it. This film is pretty much perfect for anytime and anywhere, since itís fun, and fun is what everyone wants in their good or bad days. Oh and guess what, I decided to buy the DVD. Yeah, I did, sue me.
link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=3897&reviewer=235
originally posted: 06/28/02 14:14:06