SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS
Who: Me and FIVE OTHER PEOPLE. Yeah you read that right I went to see this movie with my book club because I’m so freaking social.
What: Ocean’s 8
Where: Movie theatre
When: Saturday June 16th 2018
Why: 1) fun night out 2) we have to actually go see movies featuring women so that the studios will still occasionally make them.
As you’ve already figured out I went to see Ocean’s 8 a weekend or so ago and I have a lot of feelings about it so I’m going to attempt a review rather than my usual recap.
Obviously, I can’t include screen grabs but I will pepper this post with various pictures found on the Internet. I know, how enticing.
Plot!Sandra Bullock is Debbie Ocean, sister of the maybe-deceased Danny Ocean (played by George Clooney in the remake of Ocean’s 11 and then again in Ocean’s 12 and 13). She gets out of jail, where she has spent the last five years devising an epic and audacious heist, and assembles a crew of women (seven more to be exact) to help her pull it off. So, basically the same plot as the original Ocean’s. Except, instead of robbing casinos like the boys, she plans to steal the Cartier Toussant Necklace, worth $150 million, from the neck of prominent starlet Daphne Kluger (played by Anne Hathaway), while she’s at the MET Gala. With the help of Cate Blanchett, Helena Bonham Carter, Sarah Paulson, Mindy Kaling, Rihanna, Awkwafina, and Anne Hathaway, Sandra is able to make all her criminal dreams come true.
As mentioned in the plot summary, Sandra is mastermind Debbie Ocean. She was put in jail by her ex-boyfriend Claude Becker (actor Richard Armitage) on fraud charges and in addition to seeking jewelry wants revenge.
Cate Blanchett is Lou, Sandra’s partner in crime and possibly partner in life the two of them were giving off some MAJOR bisexual/we’ve been in a relationship vibes.
Cate’s character runs a nightclub maybe? All I know is she has a team of people watering down vodka, which she then sells. Her role in this movie is to look cool, which she absolutely does, and oversee the catering for the MET gala.
Sarah Paulson is Tammy, a stay-at-home mom with an overly energetic kid who sells illegally obtained goods from her garage. She becomes one of Vogue’s event coordinators at the gala complete with clipboard and earpiece to direct movement.
Helena Bonham Carter is Rose Weil, an Irish down-on-her-luck designer that Sandra and Cate pick to design Anne’s dress. Helena convinces Anne that she must wear the Toussant to complete this major fashion moment–and by doing so get the necklace out of the high security vault at Cartier.
Awkwafina is a street hustler, skate boarder, and sleight of hand expert that does the actual necklace-snatching while posed as a waiter.
Rihanna is a chill blunt smoking computer wiz/hacker named Nine-ball who manipulates the MET security cameras.
Mindy Kaling is a jeweler living with her oppressive mother and she has a great scene in the MET kitchen bathroom taking apart the Toussant while the building is on lockdown
Anne Hathaway is Daphne Kluger, vapid actress, host of the MET gala, and wearer of the Toussant necklace.
Some other important cast!
Richard Armitage is Claude Becker: art dealer, Sandra’s ex, and Anne’s MET date. He is responsible for getting Sandra locked up after coercing her to do some shady art dealings.
James Cordon is the insurance fraud officer tasked with putting someone in jail for theft.
There’s also a whole host of cameo’s ranging from real movie stars like Dakota Fanning and Katie Holmes to Instagram models like Kendall Jenner and Gigi Hadid. Kim K’s also in the movie as is Heidi Klum so Sandra can show off her German. Anna Wintour and the Vogue offices give us just a little taste of behind the scenes at the MET Gala.
I’ll start nice: it’s a visually appealing movie. NYC looks good, the women look good, the jewelry looks good, the MET looks good, the dingy apartment where Cate Blanchett’s character lives looks good, you get the idea. Surprisingly, Anne Hathaway was one of the highlights giving excellent reaction faces and really leaning into the insipid narcissism of her character.
The not so nice: this was a really boring movie. The drama of whether the scheme would work had no real punch to it because every obstacle the crew faced was almost immediately solved. The necklace only opens with a special magnetic device? Rihanna’s sister can whip up an identical one on the subway. The crew is being investigated for insurance fraud? Have Anne plant one section of the diamond necklace on Claude Becker to 1) divert attention from them and 2) get him tossed into jail. Also, it turns out the Toussant necklace wasn’t even the main target! Sandra and Cate didn’t tell the rest of their squad that in addition to nabbing the necklace they were going to steal practically all the other jewelry on display. I get the surprise reveal for the audience, but how did it make sense to leave the other women in the dark? Couldn’t they have accidentally foiled the plan by not knowing this whole other huge element? It would seem risky if there was any sense that this plan might not work out perfectly.
There’s a really good movie buried in the depths of Ocean’s 8 and I just wish they had been able to pull it together. The reliance on the story of the Ocean’s franchise probably crippled it a bit, which is why there should be new and original movies starring women not just what we’ve already seen, but rehashed with flipped genders. Overall I’m giving it three out of five stolen necklaces.