- Anne HathawayCate Blanchett...
- Action & AdventureComedy
- Gary Ross
- In 1 Cinema
Ever wonder why homemade pizza never tastes as good? Whether your mother decides she will give you and you siblings a “treat” or you decide to try being a chef, it’s just not the same. You can have the best mozzarella out there, follow the recipe for the sauce to the letter, but it’s still not the same. The filmmakers of Ocean’s 8 tried to make an Ocean’s Eleven rip-off. And, like fast food pizza trumping homemade pizza every time, even with the best actors, the film fails to live up to the original
The plotline is basically the same as that of Ocean’s Eleven; a leader gathers up a team of con men (or women in this case) in order to utilise their individual talents to steal something valuable. In Ocean’s 8, leader Debbie (Sandra Bullock), Danny Ocean’s sister, rounds up a washed up, in debt designer (Helena Bonham Carter), a skilled pickpocketer (Awkwafina), a stoned hacker (Rihanna), a bored house wife (Sarah Paulson), a diamond expert (Mindy Kaling), and her old sleezy bar owner partner (Cate Blanchette) in order to steal a diamond necklace worth 150 million dollars. Their plan is to have unsuspecting celebrity Daphne Kluger (Anne Hathaway) wear the necklace and steal it off her at the Met Gala.
The similarity between the film’s plotline to that of Ocean’s 11 is uncanny to the point that there is a scene where if the pronouns were changed, the dialogue is almost the same. All you need to do is imagine George Clooney in the place of Sandra Bullock and Brad Pitt in the place of Kate Blanchette, and you feel as if you are watching Ocean’s Eleven.
The fact that the film has an all-woman cast is definitely a stride forward for women’s representation in films, and should be advantageous for the film itself. However, having an all-female star-studded-cast, poorly replicate a film starring mostly men? Utter disaster. If Ocean’s 8’s director Gary Ross, a 61-year-old male, thought that by adding female stars and sloppily replicating one of the best films ever made, women could say “We did it better,”we’re sorry to tell him that that was not the case.
Even with all the similarities, Ocean’s 8 lacked the polished elegance of Steven Soderbergh, the wry, effortless humour in the simplest of scenes like Brad Pitt eating a sandwich, and the essential suspenseful moment where an expected hurdle pops out of nowhere.
As for the acting, perhaps the only one to stand out was Anne Hathaway, who perfectly mastered her role as a clueless actress and gave the film some life. Awkwafina and Rihanna come next, as both did decent jobs with the hand they have been dealt by the script. Cate Blanchette was very much sidelined in the film. Sarah Paulson and Mindy Kaling can both do so much better, and both delivered a lifeless performance. Sandra Bullock was the biggest disappointment of all, not only because her established acting skills were not present, but also because of the shoes she is trying to fill, which turned out to be too big.
We are sad to say that this “add women to the script and stir” approach to film making did not produce a good film this time, nor did it specifically help the issue of female representation in film.