Ocean’s Eleven was one of the most exciting films you could watch as an enthusiast of heist films. It had everything going for it, from a super sharp and witty script to a huge cast of characters, each having more personality than the last. Ocean’s Twelve – the sequel – wasn’t really needed, but it was still a film that was sort of set up for success honestly. It had a solid plot, a great cast of characters, and even a wider range of experimentation that the director Steven Soderbergh could do.
However that wasn’t the case, Ocean’s Twelve is a significant downgrade from the original film, and that is heartbreaking.
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The Movie Review
Ocean’s Twelve continues where the original film left off. After Danny Ocean, Rusty Ryan, and their 9 compatriots rob Terry Benedict into nothingness, he is made aware of it. However, once he knows, he threatens to kill Danny if his money isn’t returned to him within two weeks.
So now, they must rob 3 casinos worth of cash just so they can return it to Benedict. Now to make things even more complicated, the heist that they do plan is made a little bit harder by another thief known as the Night Fox.
Soderbergh went a bit too hard on the comedy in this one, in all honesty, this film did not feel as dramatic as the first one at all. Instead, it was just laughs and giggles at the expense of a dramatic situation. There was potential for this film to be highly unique, just like the original but it comes out as a comedy film above anything else.
The writing doesn’t feel half as intelligent as the first one, it actually feels dumbed down for a wider audience. Sure, there are jokes and story beats that are really smart in the film itself but none of them is anything you can admire to an extent. It’s all just the same content you saw in the first film, but a bit less high quality.
The acting is the only thing that you can say for sure is amazing. George Clooney as Danny Ocean is one of my least favorite characters, but then you have Rusty Ryan played by Brad Pitt who is an absolute joy to watch. You’ve got characters like Matt Damon’s Linus Caldwell, Casey Affleck’s Virgil Malloy, and most of all Don Cheadle’s Basher Tarr. My most favorite character in the film was by far Vincent Cassel’s character Francois Toulour.
In terms of looking better than the last, Ocean’s Twelve is shot about the same. It looks exactly like the previous film but has seemingly more color than the original movie. It’s a much more vibrant film, with a ton of focus on aesthetic design.
Somehow though, it manages to be really mundane looking in terms of visuals and cinematography. It’s a very basic-looking film, it’s colorful and feels fun to watch but it doesn’t bring anything new to the table.
The Bottom Line
In conclusion, I think that Ocean’s Twelve suffers from the exact same thing that Ocean’s Eleven flourished in. The original film had a penchant for unique comedy, sequences, sentences, and moments that weren’t heard of before.
It was an evolution of the classic heist genre. Yet somehow, Ocean’s Twelve failed to evolve upon its own predecessor. It’s a film that follows the original plot, yet doesn’t follow the original in principle.
The result is a film that feels much more lacking in personality than it should’ve been. Ocean’s Twelve is a mediocre film, it’s not bad by any means, it’s just heavily uninspired.