Ocean's Thirteen (2007)

This week's other third parter is Ocean's Thirteen. Once again, after all the hype that these Ocean films get, not much can live up to it. I also didn't really go for the first two, but I figured I'd give it one more try.

George Clooney once again plays Danny Ocean, a mastermind of the casino heist. Never mind that he made off with tons of loot in the first two films; this time it's to avenge how Willie Bank (Al Pacino) wronged his friend in a casino development deal. Bank is building the ultimate Vegas casino, something to even trump the over the top Wynn. Of course, the obvious solution is to just take Bank out the back and rough him up. Naah, then we wouldn't have any film. Instead, Danny Ocean enlists the aid of his old crew including Matt Damon, Bernie Mac, Brad Pitt, Casey Affleck, and Don Cheadle (of note, Julia Roberts didn't return this time around, but I'm not sure she really worked in these films anyway) with an elaborate plot to drain Bank's bank. Even going so far as to enlist outside consultants, they come up with plan to get a bunch of whales into the casino, betting large, and then for the house to lose at all their games simultaneously. Oh, and because they don't need the money, they're not even going to win anything out of this (they do get some jewels later, but it's an afterthought).

So, does the Ocean crew deliver the goods this time around? Well, unlike the other outings, I liked Thirteen better than the last two. I think that this time around the plot had some more substance, was better developed, and I actually wanted to see how it finished. With so much simultaneous star power, the acting was solid throughout. The scenes of the Vegas strip were well done, and they did convey the excitement and vibrancy that permeates that town. One criticism is that there were still too many scenes that dragged on, especially without any dialogue, and I had to use the fast forward button to muddle through.

My other criticism is that in their effort to get this to look like an older movie shot on film, at least on the DVD through my LCD HDTV, it was overdone. To my eye, they had added some type of film effect filter, and it turned up the grain a little too much, and made it look lower quality than the base video likely was. Also, it was plenty overdone in the first scenes, but they had pretty much ditched it by the end. Trying to get the video to look retro and classic is one thing, but this ended up being a distraction, and should have at least been consistent throughout.

I can't say that I'm waiting to see Ocean's Fourteen, but at least Ocean's Thirteen was ok.

Overall Grade: B

Reviewed by Jonas

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