Director: Gary Ross
Starring: Rihanna, Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Awkwafina, Mindy Kaling
Ocean’s 8 is one of the most successful movies of this season and, as a whole, the most successful movie of the Ocean’s franchise. Why are we still so surprised when movies with an all-female cast do well? The mind grapes squeeze.
Even though the template is the same, this isn’t a remake – it is a revolution. A gang gets together to pull off a heist and the rest, as they say, is history, and Ocean’s 8 should be recorded as one of the greatest heist movies so far in the history of film.
Sandra Bullock plays Debbie Ocean, sister of fellow con artist Danny (George Clooney of the original Ocean’s movies). She’s spent five years in prison and emerges with the perfect plot to steal a necklace from a Hollywood star (Anne Hathaway) at the swanky Met Gala.
Debbie connects with the slick-dressing and slightly androgynous Lou (Cate Blanchett, who has since “turned” the hearts of many a straight woman – check Twitter for verification), hacker Nine Ball (Rihanna – intimidating as respectfully expected), designer Rose (Helena Bonham Carter – loopy as all getout), pickpocket Constance (Awkwafina – funny and streetwise), smuggler Tammy (Sarah Paulson – an underestimated gem in this cast) and jewellery maker Amita (the fantastic Mindy Kaling) to get the job done. The heist’s secret to success will be that “we’ll never be noticed because people don’t notice women”.
Sadly, an opportunity was missed in the writing of the script. You can’t help but leave the cinema with a sigh at the thought of a couple of seemingly unfinished sentences and the belief that there was a healthy bout of banter that happened behind closed doors. But then, how do you equally spread wordplay across eight extraordinary actresses without extending beyond the film time of an hour and 51 minutes?
Having said that, Ocean’s 8 delivers exactly what you expect – wit, humour, intellect and a sense of female camaraderie that puts the old stereotype that a bunch of women can’t get along to sleep faster than a man pretending he finds female leads boring. They can, and they do.