Star – Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Anne Hathaway & Helena Bonham – Carter.
My Rating **
Genre – Action
Run Time – 1 H 50 Minutes.
Certificate – PG13
Country – U.S.A
Awards – 2 Wins & 14 Nominations
= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
Oceans 8 is where big budget film is right now, bland, politically correct and very much spreadsheet cinema. An ensemble cast is the opportunity to tick some boxes and cast actors to reflect your target demographic, rather than the right cast for the movie. Here we have an Asian, an India and a black woman in the all female Oceans 8 film to get those countries to watch. But it’s not a weak line-up, the eight main cast members winning four Oscars, two Emmys, nine Grammys, six Golden Globes, five BAFTAs, and 10 SAGs between them. But star power alone can’t make a movie work, the case here. Hollywood also decided to do the same girl power thing with Ghostbusters. That was just as forgettable.
• Sandra Bullock as Deborah “Debbie” Ocean.
• Cate Blanchett as Lou Miller
• Anne Hathaway as Daphne Kluger
• Mindy Kaling as Amita
• Sarah Paulson as Tammy
• Awkwafina as Constance
• Rihanna as Nine Ball/Leslie
• Helena Bonham Carter as Rose Weil.
• Richard Armitage as Claude Becker.
• James Corden as John Frazier.
Debbie Ocean (Sandra Bullock), the sassy and confident younger sister of Danny Ocean (George Clooney) from the other Oceans’ adventures, is just out of prison but soon teaming up with former partner-in-crime Lou (Cate Blanchett) for a new heist. They quickly assemble a team: bankrupt fashion designer Rose Weil (Helena Bonham-Carter), jewelry maker Amita (Mindy Kaling), security hacker Nine Ball (Rihanna), street hustle rand pickpocket Constance (Awkwafina), and crime scene scientist Tammy (Sarah Paulson), who fences stolen goods out of her suburban home on the side.
The ruthless and well prepared Debbie plans to steal the Toussaint, a $150 million Cartier necklace, during the upcoming Met Gala and use Hollywood movie star Daphne Kluger (Anne Hathaway) as the mark as she will be wearing the diamonds. The team manipulate here into hiring Weil and convincing Cartier to loan Daphne the Toussaint so they can make a switch with a fake of it at the Gala, Tammy securing a freelance job at Vogue and so accredited access to the gala as the team go to work. But there is a twist as Debbie has beef with art dealer Claude Becker (Richard Armitage), Daphne’s date for the night. Why not kill two birds with one stone?
This film was on my streaming movie package so gave it a go. I had a feeling it would be rather samey and not a patch on the excellent Oceans 11. Less said about Ocean 12 and 13 the better. I presume 9 and 10 are on the way with the girls on board after the budget of $70 million for this one did a decent $300 million, fairing well in the franchise. Most of that budget was for the cast.
There is nothing new and exciting here as far as heist movies go. It’s pretty straightforward and the all-female cast doesn’t really bring much to the franchise and, importantly, exploit the strong an all female dynamic, sexy Rihanna . squeezed in to tick that box. It feels like there was a late script change to keep Anne Hathaway happy and beef up her role on a diva demand or two, a move that drags the movie more in the emancipated direction.
It’s perfunctory rather than entertaining and I lost interest after the heist. The male members of the film are two-dimensional so to boost that girl-power thing and all concerned texting in their performances. The twists are expected and the film too long at a near two hours for me. If this film is about what girls can do at the boys expense then they didn’t really prove that.
Oceans 8 (2018) made $300million ($70 m budget)
Oceans 13(2007) made $311million ($85 m budget)
Oceans 12(2004) made $435million ($110m budget
Oceans 8 (2001) made $450 million ($80m budget)
Imdb.com 6.2/10.0 – (138,234votes)
Rottentomatos.com –62% critic’s approval
Metacritic.com – 61% critic’s approval