"Ocean's 8" Movie Review

Updated on January 3, 2020
popcollin profile image

Collin's been a movie critic since 2009. In real life he works in marketing and is also a novelist ("Good Riddance" published in Oct 2015).

Ocean's 8
Ocean's 8 | Source

In the wake of 2016’s so-so all-female Ghostbusters, an all-female chapter of the Ocean’s Eleven franchise might feel to some like an also-ran—as if it's more of a gimmick than anything else. But with Steven Soderbergh (who directed the 2000s’ George Clooney-led Ocean's trilogy) on as executive producer and The Hunger Games’ Gary Ross in the director’s chair (plus the quasi-all-star female cast), there was plenty of potential for a fun caper in the same playful spirit of the previous three films in the series.

Though Ocean’s 8 does have its moments, particularly during finale’s big reveal, there’s surprisingly little in the way of a heartbeat for the first hour and a half. It’s a sharp contrast to the original films, all of which rode the chemistry of its cast through to the finish line. Remember Clooney and Brad Pitt’s hilarious, pithy conversations? Casey Affleck and Scott Caan ribbing each other mercilessly? And the steely Andy Garcia providing the perfect foil? All of it is missing in Ocean’s 8.

Sandra Bullock stars as Debbie Ocean, the sister of Clooney’s Danny, who, we learn, has recently passed away. She’s finishing up a five-year jail term, during which time she’s been plotting the perfect heist—one that also doubles as a slice of revenge against Claude Becker (Richard Armitage), the skeevy art dealer responsible for her incarceration.

Debbie’s first call when she gets paroled is to Lou (Cate Blanchett), a low-level criminal who spends her days bossing around a crew watering down wholesale vodka. The plan, in what may be the most needlessly convoluted plot of any of the Ocean’s films, is to steal the Toussaint, a $150 million Cartier necklace that has been locked in a vault for 50 years. Debbie and Lou recruit disgraced fashion designer Rose Weil (Helena Bonham Carter) to design a dress for the upcoming Met Gala and convince A-list actress Daphne Kluger (Anne Hathaway) to wear it along with the necklace. The balance of the team is made up of hacker Nine Ball (Rihanna), fence Tammy (Sarah Paulson), jewelry maker Amita (Mindy Kaling), and street thief Constance (Awkwafina).

Individually, there’s no debating the talent, but when it’s all assembled, there’s not a lick of chemistry among any of them. The whole group seems to be just going through the motions, save for Hathaway, whose send-up of Hollywood divas is a rare bright spot. And since we all know the heist will eventually go off without a hitch, the fun is supposed to come via the set-up and the actors playing off each other. Alas, it’s all sorely lacking here, leaving us with a movie desperately in need of a pulse… not to mention a villain, which we never really get either.

Ross (who also co-wrote the draggy screenplay, alongside Olivia Milch) doesn’t offer much either. His version of the split-screens and camera wipes that Soderbergh executed to perfection in first three films of the series, come off more as sloppy imitation instead of anything that fits with film’s style. The only element, in fact, that gets a passing grade is Daniel Pemberton’s funky score.

The first three Ocean’s movies still stand as fun flicks to stop and watch when you trip on them, driven by a clever story and a cast that actually looks to be enjoying themselves. Ocean’s 8, though, pales in comparison, leaving you feel more than a little bit robbed.


2/5 stars

'Ocean's 8' trailer


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • profile image


      15 months ago

      I liked the movie and Anne Hathaway was absolutely incredible.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, reelrundown.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://maven.io/company/pages/privacy

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)