Ocean's 8


Ocean’s 8 ★★ 1/2

Steven Soderbergh manufactured so many sequels to Ocean’s Eleven that he could probably make one of these heist movies in his sleep. But even though he’s settled into a role as producer, his fingerprints can still be felt all over Ocean’s 8. Co-writer and director Gary Ross (The Hunger Games) creates a passable cover version, which in some ways hews closer to Lewis Milestone’s original Rat Pack rendition from 1960. Ross lacks Soderbergh’s dexterity, however, which leaves much of the heavy lifting to be done by his actors. And let’s be honest, the plots of these films have always been secondary to the joy of watching old pros having fun, whether they be Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr. and Peter Law- ford, or George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Bernie Mac. and Matt Damon. So it’s only fitting that during this moment of female empowerment, we’re being served a new twist on the formula. Sandra Bullock plays Debbie Ocean, scam artist sister of big brother Danny (George Clooney), who’s supposedly dead— which seems as likely as Danny having a heretofore unmentioned sibling. Rounding out the cast of thieves are Cate Blanchett, Helena Bonham Carter, Mindy Kaling, Rihanna, Awkwafina and Sarah Paulson—but it’s Anne Hathaway who steals the movie playing a coddled actress not too far removed from her worst tabloid self. And like the Met Gala at the center of the film’s plot, there’s lots of glamour to be found, but significantly less substance than even Soderbergh’s diminishing sequels offered. (At Assembly Row, Boston Common, Fenway, Seaport, South Bay and in the suburbs.)

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