In the midst of a summer full of superheroes, intergalactic escapades, and dinosaurs, there’s something surprisingly low-key about “Ocean’s Eight,” a good, old-fashioned, female-forward heist movie…you know with a cast that will absolutely blow your mind, but other than that, low-key.
From the start, it’s clear Debbie Ocean (Sandra Bullock) walks to the beat of a slightly different drummer than her brother Danny (George Clooney…but he does not appear in this film…for the record). Yes, of course, she’s in the family business of ridiculously clever crime and extreme charm, but her jobs have a flair that Danny just doesn’t quite attain. Although the fact that it all takes place in the middle of the Met Gala earns it immediate style points.
In the interest of time, I’m going to take a note from the movie and skip over the novelty of this being an all-female cast. Debbie describes the core difference beautifully when planning out the team with her partner Lou (Cate Blanchett): “Hims get noticed, hers get ignored.” So, while the 11 (12 and 13) relied heavily on misdirection, the 8 aim for complete invisibility (with a touch of misdirection just for fun). Best of all, to my knowledge this latest lady takeover has not ruined any childhoods, so already we have a win.
If I’m being honest, the fact that the plot of this movie centered around a group of women stealing jewelry had me a little nervous, but this outrageously star-studded cast more than makes up for the questionable plot choice. So much so that I can even, almost ignore the jilted woman motivation behind it all. To be fair, they own it and call themselves on it, but it’s still there.
But, as I said, it’s the characters they’ve assembled here that make this movie worth watching. My particular favorites are the team’s hacker, Nine Ball (Rihanna), appraiser, Amita (Mindy Kaling), and designer, Rose (Helena Bonham Carter).
And for those hoping for more than a few nods to the 11 – 13, don’t worry they’re here. There are a few delightful cameos (NOT GEORGE) and I sure hope Debbie’s near constant eating is a nod to Brad Pitt. Also, same, Debbie. Same.
All in all, this movie is a lot of fun and I look forward to seeing where these lovely ladies go next (and if George shows up…).