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Ocean's Twelve

Well, there’s no question that Steven Soderbergh is the director of cool. The cast of the original Ocean’s Eleven can be thought of as the coolest cast of all-time, if you don’t count the cast of the remake of Ocean’s Eleven, which is also just about there.

Ocean’s Twelve is easily the coolest movie in ages, no question, and it’s mostly without substance. But who cares? Honestly, there was not a moment where I was thinking that I wanted the movie to be about something. In fact, when they tried to bring any emotion other than slick sarcasm or revenge or greed into play, I sorta had to step out.

The film opens with Terry Benedict, whose money apparently allowed him to step back in time and grab a few suits from Ringo Starr’s 1974 collection, visiting each of the members of Danny Ocean’s little gang. He tells them they have two weeks to get him his money, and they all gather to see about pulling a few jobs to get a little more than 97 million together. In this first section, my man Elliot Gould is great. He is seriously underused nowadays. They hightail it to Amsterdam, where Rusty (the dreamy Brad Pitt) has an ex, Cathering Zeta-Jones’ Isabel, who also happens to be the daughter of a thief and the top EuroPol high crime expert.

They end up working some magic and catching the attention of Isabel. They also get trumped by another of the great thieves, The Nightfox. Easily my favorite new character in the film, Vincent Cassel makes the character ultra-slick and cocky, while at the same time keeping up in the supercool department with Clooney and Julia Roberts. He’s fantastic here, as he usually is, and manages to steal a scene or two from the camera work, which in this film is no small task.

The rest of the film is an attempt to steal a Faberge Egg from a futuristically guarded museum in Rome. Well, the guys go about their tricks and snipes and come up with a plan that has to be scrapped. Everyone is dead on in their interactions. After a particularly bad play, abunch of them get tossed in the pokey leaving only three to do the job without any of the usual leadership. Required to call in Danny’s wife Tess, they go through with a plan to grab the egg. Of course, there are double, triple and quite possibly quadruple-crosses going on, but they are all perfectly acceptable; I was having far too much fun to question what the hell was going on.

I can’t say there weren’t down points. While Isabel is pursuing Ocean and his friends, she’s solid. When they are dealing with her relationship to Rusty or anything else, it’s as flat as she is curvy. The tacked on portion with her dealing with her father could have been easily excised in favor of more guys doing cool stuff. Bernie Mac is hardly in the film, and he was an easy comedic highlight of their first adventure. It’s not hard to see why, I mean there are a lot of guys who need screen time, but they could have thrown him a little more time.

The highlights are the same as they were the first time Pitt, Clooney, Damon, and folks got together. Watching it unfold, seeing the hilarious interactions and the heisty fun of it all. Pitt and Clooney have a great scene where the two of them are looking straight ahead and one of them is talking. Damon plays the fool, but comes up big. Don Cheadle makes the most out of the few moments he’s given. This is a movie that has had tracks laid for it, and you know exactly where you’re headed, and you don’t care. It’s still a great ride.

This time around, they also added a ton of great cameos from actors that I would love to see do their own version of the film. Minor scenes featuring Robbie Coltrane, Eddie Izzard, and Bruce Willis are all fantastic. Topher Grace appears again as himself having gone ‘all Frankie Muniz’ on his hotel room. Albert Finney shows up, which might explain an odd reference to Miller’s Crossing. Even the guy who beat up Danny in the Belaggio from the first film makes an appearance. It’s all just an excuse for Soderbergh and company to work with their friends, and it shows in the sense of fun the whole movie gives off.

There’s no reason to not see Ocean’s Twelve. It’s got fantastic scenery, great camerawork and an average script that you just don’t care about when everything else rolls around it. See it! See it now!


Chris Garcia

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