Directed by: Gary Ross | Produced by: Steven Soderbergh, Susan Ekins | Screenplay by: Gary Ross, Olivia Milch | Story by: Gary Ross | Starring: Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Anne Hathaway, Mindy Kaling, Sarah Paulson, Awkwafina, Rihanna, Helena Bonham-Carter | Music by: Daniel Pemberton | Cinematography: Eigil Bryld | Edited by: Juliette Wefling | Production Companies: Warner Bros Pictures, Village Roadshow Pictures, Smoke House Pictures, Larger than Life Productions | Distributed by: Warner Bros Pictures | Official Website
In the middle of bloated summer blockbuster crammed with comic book superheroes, from Avengers: Infinity War (2018) to Deadpool 2 (2018), this all-female casts spin-off of Steven Soderbergh’s Ocean’s Trilogy is a real deal. This movie brings us the nostalgic feeling of watching the original Ocean’s Trilogy heists, with witty plot and sassy all-female casts. Slickly paced, radiating sexy glamour just like their predecessor trilogy, Ocean’s 8 moves with the swag style and high-class heist like a supermodel prancing down the runway.
We move on from George Clooney’s Danny Ocean to his sister, Deborah “Debbie” Ocean (Sandra Bullock, looking ultimately fierce), who has just been released from the prison. Like the high-style con art was running through their blood, Debbie is now plotting a heist at the Met Gala, the annual fashion extravaganza at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art. The first thirty minutes is spent on introducing the whole team: Debbie’s best friend and former partner Lou (Cate Blanchett); designer Rose Weil (Helena Bonham-Carter); a jewelry maker Amita (Mindy Kaling); hacker Nine Ball (Rihanna); pickpocket Constance (Awkwafina) and ex-fence Tammy (Sarah Paulson). One last member that makes the eighth is their own target, actress Daphne Kluger (Anne Hathaway).
The seven women want to steal a 150 millions dollar-worth jewelry from Cartier. The jewelry is planned to complete Kluger’s dress, design by the bankrupt designer Weil. The rest is all about the heist. There is a plot twist there – where Debbie is also planned to take down her former boyfriend Claude Becker (played by our Thorin Oakenshield from The Hobbit, Richard Armitage) who sent her to prison. The goal is literally stealing the jewelry off Kluger’s neck – never mind all the security cameras, the jewelry bodyguards (even the jewelry got Ex-Mossad bodyguards), and the magnetic clasp that makes it impossible to remove while Kluger’s head is attached to her body.
Within the same spirit as the other Ocean’s Trilogy but, although the style is similar and the female cast contains so much talent, the screenplay is bland and empty. As a concept, making an all-female version of an Ocean’s Trilogy is appealing, and the casts are amazing. They just didn’t get the kicking screenwriting they should have. The movie also spends too much running time on the planning and too little time on its execution. The execution seems too be underwhelming, and left the audience with little less excitement compared to the watching of their plan.
The casts, on the other side, seem to have fun on screen. Bullock’s Debbie especially has great chemistry with Blanchett’s Lou, who appears to be in perfect rock and roll persona here. Blanchett’s Lou is not only a cooler character, but also the reasonable one compare to Bullock’s Debbie who is almost always wildly ambitious. However, the real MVP here is Hathaway’s Daphne Kluger, who’s one of the gala’s most anticipated participant and whose neck will carry that expensive piece of Cartier’s classic jewelry. While Awkwafina is a fresh air and Bonham-Carter is once again bringing out her delightfully odd self, Hathaway’s character is nothing short of inspired, controlled lunacy, and becomes a real blast. She’s the movie’s element of surprise, and you will gladly watch her character’s craziness, from selfish celebrity to sexy fragility to insecure ordinary girl.
So this whole Ocean’s 8 movie is about women taking care of each other. Each member of the team have financial difficulties of their won, and Ocean, this time represents by Debbie, is offering a solution.