Movie of the Day – Ocean’s Thirteen
June 28, 2011 Leave a comment
Now I do enjoy a good heist movie now and then. Now their are differences in heist movies where you have a group that just goes into a situation, guns blazing and make with the cash. Nothing real complicated about the heist since any Joe can go in with a gun, rob the joint and may or may not make it out alive. No finesse or style needed. Then there are some heist movies that are all about the set up. The con game needs a little theatrics and class in order to pull off a heist without firing a bullet and rubbing their getaway in the face of the one they stole from. While there are two schools of heist movies, I prefer something with style, primarily I enjoy Ocean’s Thirteen.
I am sure that there are people who aren’t thrilled about the Ocean’s series and there are better heist movies out there. I am just choosing a more modern and smartly written heist movie for today’s choice. While the third movie is probably the best of the series, what makes it different from the others is that we as an audience is dropped into the middle of the gang pulling off the con. We are left to catch up and fill in the spots that are missing, which I enjoy doing as it is fun to play along with the gang as they carry out the con. So let’s cover the story line briefly and then finish up with some thoughts on why this is the movie of the day.
The Ocean gang are set to pull a con off of a casino businessman Willy Bank, after he doubled cross one of their trusted friend from the previous movie. Bank muscled Reuben out of his share of the casino and the gang decided to take revenge on Bank by sabotaging the opening night of the casino. The plan is make the players of the casino on opening night, the big winners. The gang have their work cut out for them since Bank is taking no chances in security, design and implementation of the nights events. Ocean and the group have to go all in (ha poker pun) and break the Bank.
As with the previous movies, the cast is all back together and with the addition of some previous faces and new ones like Al Pacino playing Willy Bank and Ellen Barkin as his right-hand in command. What makes the movie fun is the interaction amongst all the players in the con. While the second movie was the worst written and poorly acted, Thirteen seemed to have a much quicker pace and smarter writing. There weren’t too many pauses or ego stroking with inside jokes that necessarily don’t have a place in the scene. Thirteen has rapid fire dialogue and everyone seems to be on the same page, so it feels more natural and less like a bunch of A-list actors just getting together to film a scene.
While having all these great actors on screen is cool, the problem is that there are too many of them to get any sort of character development. We are left with small glimpses into their back story, which is sad since we have been following them for three movies now. So the movie suffers from character development, but that doesn’t make it a bad movie. We should expect that with a large ensemble cast, we are going to get short on back story material.
I can overlook the character development since I am interested in the con at hand. I enjoyed the fact that we are placed in the middle of trying to execute the idea. Since the con is one of the largest the group is trying to do, there would be far too much time needed to talk about the setup, but rather we given very quick responses to what they have on the table. Seeing that they already have it planned out, it is more just putting it into motion. The heist is big and fun to watch all the pieces play out in a very stylish montage. This one wasn’t one of the more creative cons, the first Ocean’s being the better con, but the way in which it is presented and carried out helped make it enjoyable.
So if you are wanting a stylish, funny, and well crafted con movie, Ocean’s Thirteen is one of more enjoyable heist movies out there. Better than the second movie by light years, this one cut the shit, dropped the audience into the middle of their plan and pushes us along the ride to the conclusion.