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When you want to steal $160 million in cash from a huge casino in Vegas, you can either do it with force, or you can do it in a sneaky way. Danny Ocean (George Clooney) and his gang map out the casino and find a way to get down into the vault without anyone knowing what is going on until Rusty (Brad Pitt) calls the owner of the casino, Terry Benedict (Andy Garcia) to state the terms. A large reason for the heist was that Benedict was going out with Danny's sexy ex-wife (Julia Roberts) and he wanted her back. The key to Danny and Linus (Matt Damon) getting into the vault was a device that Basher (Don Cheadle) stole, a bomb powerful enough to wipe out the power of Las Vegas. Not many people would find a movie about stealing money entertaining, but the way that this one was made certainly can catch people's eye. I really think that it is one of the best of the new decade.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Ocean's Eleven is a spectacular film. It's played out perfectly and
it's everything you'd want in a heist movie.
The movie moves at a fast pace, keeping you constantly at the edge of your seat as you watch Danny and the crew steal from three casinos belonging to Terry Benedict (Andy Garcia) for the prize of over $150 million. There's tons of twists, surprising you as the heist is carried out and nothing is as you'd expect it to be. Overall, it is an awesome movie.
The Vegas setting is vibrant and cool, and it is filmed in a way to make you feel like you're in the heist with the actors.
The casting is great. George Clooney was perfect for the role of Danny Ocean and plays the mastermind in a beautifully confident manner. Brad Pitt is sexy as always and super cool as Rusty Ryan in the flick. Matt Damon is the sneaky pickpocket Linus Caldwell, mixing the perfect amount of innocence to the world of high-stakes theft yet with a maturity as well.
Julia Roberts is stunning as always as Tess Ocean and Andy Garcia makes the perfect villain in his role of the billionaire casino owner Terry Benedict. Bernie Mac is extremely charismatic as Frank Catton (the inside man), Carl Reiner is the old timer-Saul Bloom, and Don Cheadle is hilarious as Basher, the explosives genius.
Other stars, including Casey Affleck and Scott Caan as wheelmen Virgil and Turk Malloy, Eddie Jemison as Livingston Dell the computer genius, and Shaobo Qin as greaseman Yen are wonderful in their roles.
And last but most certainly not least, Elliot Gould as Reuben Tishkoff, the man funding the heist and the lovely, charismatic casino owner is perfect. Gould steals every single scene he's in.
So as you can tell, this movie is a must see and a perfect ten. This is one you don't want to miss.
PS- The sequels, Ocean's Twelve and Ocean's Thirteen, are amazing as well. I highly recommend you see all three.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
The "Ocean's 11" franchise started in 1960 with Lewis Milestone's
"Ocean's 11", a glossy heist thriller which saw a gang of thieves
pulling a daring operation in which several Las Vegas casinos are
simultaneously robbed. Milestone was a bit of an auteur, known for
several fairly good war films, but his "Ocean's 11" remains an
anonymously directed affair. Instead, crooner and mega-star Frank
Sinatra seems to be the one pulling all the strings, playing the
titular role of heist-master Danny Ocean within the film, and the star
and money-man calling the shots outside the film. The production was
reportedly wrapped around Sinatra's lengthy stays in Las Vegas, where
he performed various concerts at up-scale casinos, hotels and theatres.
While Milestone's "Ocean's 11" made ridiculous amounts of money back in 1960 everyone wanted to see its big name cast: Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr, Peter Lawford and Angie Dickinson today it's a hugely dull movie, with large chunks of exposition, unnecessary filler and a heist that's been bettered by countless heist films released both before and after. With notions as to what is and isn't "cool" constantly changing, "Ocean's 11" also looks completely neutered, its "smooth", "relaxed" and "cool" cast now positively lifeless. Half a century later, only Sinatra comes off looking well, though precisely because of him the film plays like one of those bad crime movies by modern African American rappers, designed to show off the star's "riches", "bling", "money", "rule breaking", "flashy accessories" and "bad boy criminality" (Sinatra had close ties with the criminal underworld both the Italian mafia and US government). It's a white bread version of such mega-celebrity egotism. Milestone's best scenes? A colourful Saul Bass opening and a wordless ending shot, much imitated by Tarantino, in which our suited gang of heroes walk down a pavement. Everything between these scenes can be missed.
Steven Soderbergh would release a remake of "Ocean's 11" in 2001. It's a much better film, featuring a cast of photogenic mega stars (Brad Pitt, George Clooney, Matt Damon, Elliot Gould etc), smooth operators, bad boys and likable character actors. "I owe you for the thing with the guy in the place," is the line which gets the plot rolling, a slice of dialogue which epitomises the film's comically nonchalant attitude. If Milestone's film strove to be cool, Soderbergh goes for a kind of meta-cool, our cast both too cool for cool and playing uncool with coolness, mega stars Brad Pitt always chomping down on food, Matt Damon bumbling with style and George Clooney perpetually basking in his own silly magnificence. As the heist movie is intrinsically formulaic first act: assemble the "samurai", second act: plan the heist, third act: escape or get captured Soderbergh indulges in a kind of postmodern devil-may-care attitude. Meanwhile, the film's aesthetic is retro cool, with European/French touches, glossy locales, eye popping lights, sparkling surfaces/bulbs, lush cinematography, romantic editing/music, liquidy shapes and a camera that salivates over its suave actors, smooth villains and expensive locales. It's all about the money.
Soderbergh describes his "Ocean's 11" as a "big wind up toy", and while its designed to be "just entertainment", it does fit in with a number of the director's "heavier" films ("King of the Hill", "Che", "Traffic", "Eric Brockovich", "The Girlfriend Experience"), which have focused on economic inequality, economic depressions, Marxist revolutionaries and violent corporate muscle. Indeed, the casinos where Soderbergh's heists take place, the Bellagio and several other mega-casinos on the LA Strip, were built in the 1990s by entrepreneurs and corporate raiders like Steve Wynn (the real life model of Benedict, the film's villain, played sexily by Andy Garcia) with junk bonds and help from organised crime lords. With its art galleries and upscale restaurants, the Bellagio was then part of a diversification strategy in LA to earn profits from non-gaming sources. Yet the appeal of all these amenities, like gambling itself, is fuelled by a drive to offer consumers escape from a reality of diminished opportunities for upward mobility (within an American economy of diminishing wages, outsourcing and continuous lay-offs). Within a postindustrial, globalized economy, gambling, and even crime, increasingly appears to offer the best way, in the words of Jackson Lears, "to get ahead in a world where work no longer seems reliable". Indeed, each of the film's robbers comes with some indication that they embody the disaffection created by the increasing division of American society into "haves" and "have nots", whether it be a criminal past, lack of work, or entrapment in a job they find to be unrewarding. Even the bank-roller behind the heist, a former casino owner named Reuben Tishkoff (smoothly played by Elliout Gould), wants revenge against a new economy in which corporate moguls like Benedict can use their financial muscle to push him out. On the flip side, such readings are contradicted by the film's need to work as a big budget wish-fulfilment fantasy, and the fact that the crime genre has always portrayed the criminal as Soderbergh does here: cinema's lovable criminals may live on the outside, but they're still perfect conformists, chasing money in their own way because of capitalism's failings.
Soderbergh would release a sequel, "Oceans 12", some years later. This one takes the form of a "con movie", its narrative bending giddily in all directions, mercilessly toying with both convention and audience expectations. The film wasn't well received, despite being as good as its predecessor, which led to Soderbergh releasing the dull, and far safer, "Oceans 13" in 2007. The villain's name is literally "Bank" (Al Pacino) in this outing, but the film is mostly dumb.
8.5/10 Some overlooked modern heist films: Mamet's "Heist" and Neil Jordan's "The Good Thief", a remake of Melville's genre defining "Bob The Gambler".
"Danny Ocean" (George Clooney), a charismatic thief, just 24 hours
after serving a lengthy prison sentence, is already planning his next
crime. This is making the biggest casino heist in history. To do this
will be a team of eleven men, each of them the best in their field. But
an unexpected problem will arise: the owner of the premises, " Terry
Benedit"(Andy Garcia), is lover "Tess "(Julia Roberts), his ex-wife.
In the 90's there were many films that had a great deal but were a failure. But now with this film, logic has prevailed and we saw a splendid and enjoyable work, done by actors as George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Julia Roberts and Matt Damon. Certainly is a remake of an old movie starring Frank Sinatra, but that does not stop saying that this is one of the most outstanding films of its kind in recent years.
"Ocean's Eleven" has a great advantage over the tape of the same name of the 60 is that this remake by Steven Soderbergh has a stellar cast, well organized and also works at a fast pace, showing such extraordinary complicity between Clooney -Pitt that works wonders. And it is that despite the simplicity of the film, Soderbergh manages the viewer to enjoy an elegant and also a grand finale which includes the melodic song "Clair De Lune".
David Holmes does a good job combining music famous topics as "A Little Less Conversation" by Elvis Presley or "Papa Loves Mambo" by Perry to give the story more fun and charm. Among the various configurations can be found some touches of retro music as "Boobytrapping" or air of jazz as the theme created by Holmes called "Tess".
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Eleven men convene to pull off the greatest con in the history of Las
Vegas: lifting three casinos (the Mirage, the MGM Grand, and the
Bellagio). This becomes the monumental task for "Ocean's Eleven",
masterminded by Danny Ocean. Danny and his right-hand man Rusty "Russ"
Ryan assign the remaining nine men various jobs based on their
individual specialties. The owner of the casinos is the merciless Terry
Benedict, with whom Danny's ex-wife Tess is now in a relationship. The
degree of risk in this grand heist is all too great; one tiny mistake
or one lapse of concentration can cause the whole scam to backfire.
Assuming everything goes according to plan, the numerical figure is
just above $160 million.
The casting of "Ocean's Eleven" could not have been any better! The handsome George Clooney stars as Danny Ocean, and the beautiful Julia Roberts plays Tess; their sharp, witty dialogue exchanges are invaluable. The dignified Andy Garcia brilliantly portrays Terry Benedict, "the enemy". Not to mention Brad Pitt as the constantly-eating celebrity-poker instructor Rusty Ryan; Matt Damon as the skilled pickpocket Linus Caldwell; Shaobo Qin as the limber Chinese acrobat Yen; Elliott Gould as the swaggering big-shot financier Reuben Tishkoff; Carl Reiner as the convincing flimflam man Saul Bloom; Bernie Mac as the suave blackjack dealer Frank Catton; Don Cheadle (uncredited, for some reason) as the British explosives expert Basher Tarr; Eddie Jemison as the unnerved surveillance expert Livingston Dell; and Casey Affleck & Scott Caan as "white trash" bickering twins Virgil & Turk Malloy, drivers/bellhops/valets/bodyguards/paramedics/"balloon boys"/etc.
My favorite moments from "Ocean's Eleven" include the following. Near the end of the picture, Danny's ten comrades walk toward the famous Bellagio fountains and watch the show, to the accompaniment of a beautiful piece of music by Claude Debussy. After squeezing his small, flexible frame inside a cash cart, Yen shows his appreciation to Russ for offering him a magazine. Danny and Linus nervously strap themselves to the top of the vault elevator shaft, which is rigged with motion sensors. When Danny and some of his crew arrive at the California Institute of Advanced Science (in order to steal a "pinch"), Linus expresses disgust at having to remain inside the van with the Malloy twins; having had enough of their quarreling, Linus escapes the van and enters the building, only to be chased by security, forcing him to jump from the roof onto the van. At Reuben's gaudy residence, Danny explains to his crew the layout of the entire scam, illustrated by computer animation. A tense moment occurs when Danny and Linus prepare to blow up the vault door while Yen's bandaged hand is stuck in the door from inside the vault! The brief blackout causes a massive free-for-all in the boxing ring and on the casino floors. During the celebrity five-card draw game, Topher shows his hand: "All reds!" And finally, I love the three flashbacks as Reuben describes to Danny & Russ the top three failed casino heists.
In closing, I cannot write a commentary of "Ocean's Eleven" without expressing my highest praise for the brilliant music score of David Holmes. The music keeps the picture driving along at a respectable pace and keeps the audience interested. Some of my favorite musical moments from this film include: Danny exiting the prison during the opening credits; Linus' first appearance in the subway; Livingston disguised as security personnel infiltrating the casino security hallways and eventually losing his way; the "S.W.A.T. team" leaving the casino carrying the bags of money; Linus jumping onto the van from a rooftop; the end of the lunch scene at Reuben's residence, leading into Frank Catton's migration to Vegas and the introduction of the Malloy twins; and finally, "Caravan" and "Blues in the Night" accompanying the respective introductions of Yen and Saul. What a fantastic music score!
Steven Soderbergh's 2001 remake of the 1960 Rat Pack pseudo-classic "Ocean's Eleven" spins the tale of Danny Ocean, a con man ten feet out of prison brewing his best scheme yet. He gathers up ten specifically chosen accomplices to pull off a very profitable, perfect crime that involves simultaneously ripping off three major Las Vegas casinos. George Clooney heads up a film that is busting at the seams with familiar faces. This is modern-day heist movie-making at its sharpest and most stylish, written by the screenwriter of "Matchstick Men" and directed by the prolific filmmaker behind the likes of "Out of Sight". It's one of those highly entertaining movies with so many intricate pieces flying through the air that predictably fall into place by the end. "Ocean's Eleven" is just great, satisfying fun!
Sure, Ocean's Eleven is a remake.
But it does take some skill to make it comparable, if not better than the original. The cast is really hard to maintain, it's like a dream team, and all want attention. The film is split in three parts, the introduction and recruitment, the planning, and the heist. The film is not only enjoyable for the heist and how it's pulled (which is a surprise only once) but in fact the whole film is enjoyable AGAIN because of the "bad boys on the run" tone which is very funny in the way characters are introduced.
A sure DVD buy which will give you fun on several viewings.
I love caper films, and this is one of the best. But, it is more than
that. It is also a great love story. Not the mushy kind that appears on
Lifetime, but one that really tugs at you. George Clooney and Julia
Roberts are delightful in a superb cast of characters.
Thie isn't just one caper, but 11 of them, any one of which could fail easily and bring the whole thing crashing down. It is really exciting to see the pieces fall into place as Andy Garcia gets his from the likes of Casey Affleck, Scott Caan, Don Cheadle, George Clooney, Matt Damon, Elliott Gould, Eddie Jemison , Bernie Mac, Brad Pitt, Shaobo Qin , and Carl Reiner.
Steven Soderbergh is the man.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
It is a rare thing that a remake exceeds the original, however, you do
occasionally get that. Ocean's Eleven is one of those cases.
George Clooney plays a down and out bank robber who has just been released from prison. He and Brad Pitt - whose job is teaching celebrities how to play poker - gather together a team of 11 people to pull off a heist: and not just one heist, but three. In Ocean's Eleven, we see them pull off the first of the heists, then Ocean's Twelve (its inferior sequel) shows us the second heist, and Ocean's Thirteen contains the final heist. Andy Garcia shines as the sinister owner of these three Las Vegas casinos, looking extremely comfortable as the orderly, prim, Terry Benedict. Brad Pitt has his best role since Fight Club (1999), and George Clooney redeems himself after his miserable attempt at portraying Batman.
This is a completely different type of spy film from the Bourne trilogy and the James Bond series. It doesn't contain any action or violence, and the only shooting is when Brad Pitt fires off a round from a gun to cause a diversion (not even aimed at anyone). It is an extremely sly film with some of the coolest music in cinema history. It keeps the light mood while still displaying the difficulty of their situation.
All in all, I highly recommend this film.
Also, here's how I would rate the appropriateness of this film.
Sex/Nudity: None Profanity: Moderate. The F-word is uttered once. Violence: None. Drugs/Alcohol: Some characters are seen with alcoholic beverages.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I did not see the original. But this version of Ocean's Eleven is one
of my favorite movies off all time. I enjoyed Steven Soderbergh's
direction and camera work. I particularly like the way each of the
'eleven' characters is introduced, leaves the viewer with an idea of
what their role will be. I also prefer movies that do not get carried
away with useless and over-the-top special effects. Too many modern
movies are depending on CGI. This movie reminds me of movies from the
past. I enjoyed watching this movie as much as I enjoyed 'The Sting'
Now I will admit the idea of knocking over three casinos is fairly unrealistic. But the story, characters, and director make me believe it is possible. I absolutely love the idea of the extremely wealthy Las Vegas casinos getting rooked. They can spare some cash. And it does not hurt Daniel Ocean also makes off with an excellent bonus prize at the end.
I highly recommend this movie, very entertaining!!
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