OCEAN'S THIRTEEN

REVIEW BY DAVE SMITH

 

For me the best part of this film is the opening credits where Sammy Davis, Jr. is singing the original Ocean's Eleven theme. (by the great Sammy Cahn and Jimmy Van Heusen) One big difference between Sinatra's "rat pack" and Clooney's "rat pack" is that Sinatra knew when to stop. Despite the fact Ocean's Twelve was not a hit, Clooney decided to do another one. I don't know, maybe these guys just like to hang around with each other and a series of films like this is a good excuse. It does seem a shame however to waste all that talent. I kind of cringed watching the magnificent Don Cheadle play a minor character whose assignment is to figure out a way to create an earthquake.

Yes this film will make money. The all-star cast guarantees it. But why does Clooney waste his time doing something like this when he can do much more worthy things like Good Night and Good Luck or Syriana? Maybe he needs a break now and then and this movie was easy to do and fun for everyone. True it is harmless and if you can get through the first part of the film when the gang is planning their caper, then watching the caper unfold is fun.

In addition to the regulars, there is Al Pacino (another waste of talent) who plays a double crossing casino owner. He makes a mistake when he double crosses Reuben Tishkoff (Elliott Gould) causing Tishkoff to have a heart attack and bringing Clooney and his pals to the rescue. Then one implausible thing after another occurs. They send two of their people to Mexico where the casino's dice are made to fix it so the dice will flip over when someone flips on a cigarette lighter. Then the whole plot is in danger unless they can find some way to cause the casino's power to go out for at least three minutes. They decide to cause an earthquake. They buy one of the giant tunnel boring machines that made the Chunnel. It breaks down and they have to buy the one that started from "the other side." The cost for it is 36 million dollars so now they have to get a partner. Who is the partner? None other than Andy Garcia who was the guy Clooney's gang hit in the last movie.

Yes Garcia agrees to go along with them and everything works like clockwork. There is however one more great implausibility. The last scene involves rigging a slot machine so a certain person just happens to sit down in the right seat, put in a token and wins eleven million dollars. That is where my suspension of implausibility snapped.

 

 

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