We have been short on good Heist films and Ocean’s 8 fills that void. Writes Olivia Milch (Dude), a fairly new writer, and Gary Ross (The Hunger Games, Big) use the classic heist format and bring a new chapter to the Ocean’s Franchise. The best part of this is viewers do not need to watch any of the previous films to enjoy it. This film stands strong on its own. With only touches from the original trilogy, as a wink to the fans, they bring us more content in the Oceans universe.
Debbie Ocean (Sandra Bullock) fresh out of prison gets to work on a plan she worked on while serving time for a previous grift gone wrong. Once out she seeks her trusted partner Lou (Cate Blanchett). Lou has her finger on the pulse of all the “Professionals” they need for this job. This is where we get the hiring montage. First, we meet the mark, Daphne Kluger (Anne Hathaway) an actress who is hosting the Met Gala while wearing the Cartier necklace known as the Toussaint with a price tag of $100 to $150 million.
They bring in a clothing designer, Rose (Helena Bonham Carter) a Computer expert called Nine Ball (Rihanna) a jeweler, Amita (Mindy Kaling) and a pickpocket, Constance (Awkwafina). Also, you can’t forget the Fence, Tammy (Sarah Paulson). Together they attempt an incredible and funny heist.
Everyone is absolutely outstanding in their roles. They are well cast and well performed. The on-screen chemistry with expert pace and timing of the film make it a joy to watch. This spinoff absolutely has the strength to launch another three films.
My fear is the studio will learn the wrong lesson. The take away from this movie needs to be there is a hunger for female-driven films. We have seen record box office returns on films like Wonder Woman and Girls Trip. Original content written and directed by women will provide an honest voice and a gateway to more great films. I fear they will learn gimmick movies starring all women will work. They make think GhostBusters reboot was a failed attempt and this one has the formula right.
If you think about Ghostbusters and Ocean’s 8 are in the same category you would be wrong. The whole misogynistic backlash aside, Ghostbusters was a complete reboot of the original film. Fans took it personally like something as being taken from them. Many did not see Ghostbusters but made a judgment on it. Ocean’s 8 is a spinoff so it does nothing to the original content. If viewers dismiss this film as women taking something away from the Oceans movie they are completely wrong. Go see this film then decide.
I was trying to write this review without mention the gender swapping aspect because it’s a great movie all on its own. To make this style and form of a film we have to stop looking at it from a gender perspective and look at each film on its own merits and measure it against other films of the same genres without thinking of gender, race or anything other than “is this a good movie or not”. Only then will we be free from stereotypes and start watching great films from everyone.
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