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Ocean's 13 [Blu-ray] (2007) [Region Free]
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Third installment of director Steven Soderbergh's popular series of glitzy crime comedies. The only hotelier in Las Vegas who can claim that each and every one of his establishments has earned the Royal Review Board's Five Diamond Award, Willy Bank (Al Pacino) has made more than his share of enemies during his impressive ascent. However, in betraying Reuben Tishkoff (Elliott Gould), Bank has finally crossed the one man who could bring his entire empire crumbling to the ground - Danny Ocean (George Clooney). Now Reuben is in a critical condition and Ocean is determined to strike back at the man who nearly murdered his mentor. As the opening of Bank's newest casino draws near, Danny and the crew set into motion a bold plan to humiliate the cocksure casino owner and forever tarnish his spotless reputation.
It comes as something of a relief to find that Oceans Thirteen eases itself back to the charm and suave, sophisticated swagger that underpinned the first in whats become a trilogy of capers. And for those who endured the self-indulgent mess that was Oceans Twelve, this latest and final entry in the franchise is a very welcome treat, proving very much that lessons were learnt. Dropping Catherine Zeta Jones and Julia Roberts from the cast list, but signing up the smaller matter of Al Pacino instead, the rest of the players remain broadly intact. So its George Clooneys Danny Ocean who leads the team of cons, supported by Brad Pitt, Matt Damon, Andy Garcia, Don Cheadle and Carl Reiner. And its the easy chemistry between these and the rest of the team that underpin what makes Oceans 13 such an enjoyable ride.
The plot pits Ocean and his gang against Al Pacinos ruthless casino boss, and while the script perhaps lacks the cleverness and dense plotting that worked so well in the first adventure, it still leaves plenty of room for outright entertainment.
The end result is an easy-to-enjoy caper, thats not the equal of Oceans Eleven, yet far superior to Oceans Twelve. And considering it was released in the midst of a summer where threequels generally werent too well received, Oceans Thirteen arrives in fine shape, and rounds off the trilogy with panache. --Jon Foster
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Anyway, I missed O-12 first time round (have seen it since) and it seems I missed nothing; O-13 isn't as exciting as the original and in fact isn't really exciting at all. It's slick and glossy and Clooney looks dashing, but apart from some interesting observations of the high-tech efforts employed by the con-men and the equally sophisticated equipment used by the casinos to thwart them, this is little more than a harmless, enjoyable romp which is devoid of any violence or offensive language and raises the occasional chuckle at times. If it wasn't for the gallery of A-list actors - who are distracting enough to compensate for a so-so script - and the high expectations that go with them, this would have been a very forgettable experience, but to be honest I did enjoy it, it's worth renting at the very least but I think it's greatest number of admirers will be of a female gender who will be in fantasy-land with Clooney, Pitt, Garcia and the like on screen for two hours together. Not really a 'bloke's film', but it might make for a useful gift for SWMBO.
I wish I had just bought the standard DVD though rather than spend £22 on this so-called hi-definition movie. The video quality was comparable to standard DVD and most definitely not what I have come to think of as high definition. I have over 50 Blu-Ray and HD-DVD movies in my collection and this is by far the worst picture quality despite it being VC1 encoded. I am not trolling when I say that this appears to be standard DVD quality. To compound this there is not even a high definition sound track. We have come to expect uncompressed LPCM or other HD sound of at leat 5.1 or even 7.1 channels if we are lucky on new releases but on Oceans 13 we are given as the only option the old Dolby Digital 5.1 - yes the same sound format that we get on standard low def DVD. Where is the HD sound? Where is the HD picture? I wish I had Saved my money and bought the standard DVD of this movie. I am sure it would have been no different as a viewing experience and I would have had change from a £20 note for a nice bottle of Rioja to accompany it.
The guys get back together because their pal (Gould) has been swindled. The plan is to get the guy who did it. Of course, it appears impossible. And then, in addition to unforeseen complications, there are scams within scams within scams. One fun thing is the reappearance of several former victims, adding to the fun. Unfortunately, it fails to add up to much more than what came before, though with truly fine acting. There are also many details you might want to watch a second time around, I will let the reader guess as to whether they succeed.
This is pass time stuff that doesn't reach a level of quality I would want to own. But I do.
Pitt and Clooney bounce off each other much like Redford and Newman in the seventies, and Matt Damon gets a little bit more to do. The big problem is that it's incredibly difficult to keep a decent pace going when you have so many characters to accommodate.
Oceans 13 is not a disaster, but when you look at the cast, it is a bit of a waste of talent.
For one thing, it makes very little sense. I get that there is a bunch of 'cool' white men and a couple of racial stereo types out for 'revenge' by ripping off a hotel owner, but two minutes in to the film I honestly didn't have a clue what was going on because of all the hi-tech babble involved in setting up the con. The 'good news' is that you don't have to understand this movie (writers probably didn't, the cast clearly don't) you just have to sit back and enjoy the ride. But that `s the big problem with Ocean's 13, it ain't much of a ride!
Heist movies have a simple format, you have to think that the gang have everything worked out,, you then have to think that fate gets in the way and all is lost before a final rescue by serenity or a last minute twist which reveals that 'the hand of fate' was part of the plan all along. But for any of that to work the audience has to be kept guessing, that's the ride, the "will they, won't they?" effect. As other reviewers here have said O13 is a smug film which lacks any kind of tension and what plot twists there are fall flat, one fails to make sense after the final reveal (if that's not really the police then why do the team have to hack the data of 'known criminal associates'?). It feels like a film that is just going through the motions.
But worst of all are the final few minutes.Read more ›