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Ocean's Eleven

Ocean's Eleven

The most memorable thing about the original 1960 film was the star-studded cast.  But, the Rat Pack (Sinatra, Davis, Jr., and Martin) have nothing over this group of young, charismatic stars director Steven Soderbergh put together for the remake.

George Clooney plays Danny Ocean, fresh from a four year stint in prison.  He puts together a group of pickpockets, circus acrobats and explosive experts to break into a vault that holds the money for three Las Vegas casinos owned by the same guy (Andy Garcia).  That the casino owner is also dating Tess (Julia Roberts), Ocean's ex-wife, has nothing to do with his choice of casinos to steal from (yeah right!).

The Mirage, Bellagio and MGM Grand Hotel Casinos are Ocean's target and for some reason the owners of the hotels agreed to let them use the real hotel names and allowed filming inside and out, which really adds to the excitement.  It's hard to believe that just a short while ago, a Vegas tourist would have his camera immediately confiscated for taking a picture inside the casino.

Don Cheadle (with a phony British accent), Casey Affleck, Matt Damon, Brad Pitt, Elliott Gould, and Carl Reiner make up part of Ocean's group, and each one has a scene which showcases his character.  Damon has a nice scene where he plays a gaming commission employee; Gould is fun as a big-mouthed, gold chained former casino owner; and Pitt just exudes charm in every scene he is in.  Also, Garcia gives a great performance as the suave business owner.  He's smooth, steely and in full control.

With all this star power on screen, it's still clear that this picture belongs to Clooney.  He has a cool, confident air about him, and the fact that when he's released from prison, he leaves the gates wearing a tuxedo, doesn't hurt.

The caper is slickly produced and since each casino has a camera in every nook and cranny on their premises, we have a bird's eye view of all the goings-on.

The heist is interesting and the interaction of the characters is fun (especially between Clooney and both Roberts and Pitt), but it's the cast that holds this film together and makes it enjoyable.

Ocean's Eleven

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