Film Reviews

OCEAN’S THIRTEEN

By • Jun 8th, 2007 •

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Warner Bros. Pictures presentsin association with Village Roadshow Pictures
A Jerry Weintraub/Section Eight production

Ugly. Filmed through dirt. Danny’s Dead End Kids infiltrate bin Laden’s camp and hold him ransom for some old dude who rescued them from an orphanage.

“OCEAN’S TWELVE was [bleep]ing terrible. I feel like the whole point of that movie was to pay for [George] Clooney’s villa in Tuscany. The only heist in OCEAN’S TWELVE was them taking our money” – Eli Roth, director of HOSTEL 2, to Boston magazine.

Eli, you better stay away from OCEAN’S THIRTEEN

In the Entertainment Weekly (June 15) cover story Brad Pitt and George Clooney admit that director Steven Soderbergh wanted to name the new movie OCEAN’S THIRTEEN: THE ONE WE SHOULD HAVE MADE THE LAST TIME.

How do you like this PR poop? Let’s tell the public to buy a $9.75 ticket to THIRTEEN because we know we took their cash for the lousy TWELVE and with this one we’re making up for it.

I guess I’m going to have to wait until OCEAN’S FOURTEEN.

May I make one request? Please give Vincent Cassel a bigger part in FOURTEEN.

The script by Brian Koppelman & David Levien is incomprehensible and stupid. It takes place in The Parallel Universe where, if you want to fix dice, you just go down to Mexico with a fake mustache and get a job in the dice-making factory. Want to ruin a visitor’s stay at the hotel? Poison his food. Get a room right next to his and spray a virus into the air-conditioning. Get a key to his room and put bed bugs and human DNA on the sheets.

These things can happen. It just takes a little brainstorming.

Danny’s boys take revenge when Willie Bank (Al Pacino), who is building a hotel/casino in Las Vegas, cheats Reuben Tishkoff (Elliott Gould) out of his half of the project. Reuben has a heart attack and is in a coma in his mansion. Danny and his crew are indebted to Reuben because … he adopted them from an orphanage, taught them everything they know, and bankrolled all their con jobs. Did I mention he put all their kids through rehab and college?

Each member of Ocean’s crew write Reuben love letters and hold vigils at his bedside.

It is not possible to actually steal from Willie Bank since his monstrosity tower, called “The Bank,” has the most sophisticated system in The Parallel Universe, called “The Greco,” that monitors people’s heart rate, pulse and the dilation of the pupil. It is a remote polygraph. The only way to disrupt “The Greco” is with a natural disaster. The crew decides to destroy opening night by disabling “The Greco” for 3-minutes. During this brief time, everybody in the casino will win. If they break The Bank, Reuben will get his share back. All they have to do is cause an earthquake. With a small investment and help from rival bastard Terry Benedict (Andy Garcia), the crew buys and transports a $36 million mountain-moving machine.

It’s the very same drill that dug the Chunnel, linking England with France! The hell with paperwork and logistics! This is The Parallel Universe. Transportation issues, notwithstanding, Ocean’s crew knows how to operate this baby!

Terry’s investment comes with a condition. He wants Bank’s $250 million diamond collection housed on the roof in a citadel of armo. Linus Caldwell (Matt Damon) insists he can seduce Bank’s terrified, sex-starved, aide-de-camp Abigail Sponder (Ellen Barkin) by wearing a fake nose. Where else would Abigail take Linus but to the roof for a seduction?

Instead of giving Abigail a roofie, he sprays her with a female-only aphrodisiac he got on eBay. Then, only in The Parallel Universe, on opening night Bank agrees to let Frank (Bernie Mac) set up a dominoes game in the casino, bypassing the Nevada Gaming Commission.

I’m not going to insult you with how Ocean gets one of his guys to pretend to be a “whale.” Isn’t there a tracking list of all the Asian high rollers? And as we saw in OCEAN’S TWELVE, when up against a plot point without any smart twist or clever writing, bring in the family.

OCEAN’S THIRTEEN is filmed through a filter of dirt. It is just ugly cinematography. If this is Director of Photography Steven Soderbergh’s idea of a better movie, he must start thinking about a clever screenplay for the next one. Then I would forgive his film-stock choice. Pitt and Clooney are in shadow most of the time. Two of the world’s most handsome, stylish men and their backs are to the camera!

Perhaps the film stock was an overall device so that Barkin and Pacino could look better in orange-tinted, diffused light? With such a huge cast, everyone just either sits around or dresses up in a disguise that “The Greco” would pick up in a second.

OCEAN’S THIRTEEN: THE ONE THEY SHOULD NOT HAVE MADE.


Credits:
Director/director of photography: Steven Soderbergh
Screenwriters: Brian Koppelman, David Levien
Producer: Jerry Weintraub
Executive producers: Bruce Berman, George Clooney, Susan Elkins, Gregory Jacobs, Frederic W. Brost
Production designer: Philip Messina
Music: David Holmes
Costume designer: Louise Frogley
Editor: Stephen Mirrione

Cast:
Danny Ocean: George Clooney
Rusty Ryan: Brad Pitt
Linus Caldwell: Matt Damon
Terry Benedict: Andy Garcia
Basher Tarr: Don Cheadle
Frank Catton: Bernie Mac
Abigail Sponder: Ellen Barkin
Willy Bank: Al Pacino
Virgil: Casey Affleck
Turk: Scott Caan

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