Ocean’s 11

Dir: Stephen Soderbergh
2001
Haven’t watched much these days,
as I’m editing (or thinking about editing) this music video, but the missus insisted we watch this film as the plane she was on a week or so ago landed before the film finished. (In an even stranger example of bad planning, they showed Ocean’s 12 first. The original Rat Pack vehicle is overrated to start with, going downhill after the excellent Saul Bass title sequence. Lazy plotting, turn-up-and-goof performances, and Sammy Davis Jr. relegated to “working negro” status all make the film ordinary at best, but its reputation has been resurrected, I believe, by viewers nostalgic for the era of their fathers, with Sinatra standing in for Daddy.
Oh well. Sodenberg’s remake is equally slapdash, but big, bloated, glossy. I like all these actors here: Clooney, Pitt, Matt Damon, Julia Roberts, but what are they doing? Slumming, looking grumpy or blank, with not many memorable lines to utter or laughs to gain. Pitt especially, whose character is solely defined by his proximity (friendship?) to Clooney’s “Ocean”. And watching Carl Reiner waste his time was sad, after not having seen him on the screen for ages. Maybe only Elliot Gould seems to be having fun. Compared to this, the remake of The Italian Job, dumb though it may be, at least breathed on the screen. This is as airless as a bank vault.

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