Oceans 13

A few excerpts from Christianity Today's movie review:
Ocean's Thirteen is—to use a highly technical term—cool. The suits are sleek, the dialogue snappy, the tone wry, the jazz hip. Even Las Vegas—bastion of neon kitsch that it is—looks opulently graceful. The Ocean movies (2001's Ocean's Eleven and 2004's Ocean's Twelve) have never been hard to look at, but director Steven Soderbergh's third run at the heist formula seems to be a case of practice making perfect. Every color-saturated frame of Ocean's Thirteen entertains as intended. The waters in this ocean aren't deep, but they sure do sparkle on the surface.

Ocean's Thirteen follows the same basic formula as the first two films, unfolding a series of convoluted schemes, cons, hi-tech hi-jinks, double-identities and plot twists as the boys outsmart rivals and increasingly-sophisticated security systems. There are few genuine surprises; the audience, having been through this twice already, knows that not everyone is who they appear to be and that Danny and his comrades are up to any challenge. Still, it's fun to watch the gang solve a new set of problems, and if this film is inferior to the others in providing the unexpected, it is superior in clarity. (Most of the time, I actually understood what was going on.)

Ocean's Thirteen also has a moral edge (or at least the sensation of one) over its predecessors. The men are motivated not by greed but by a desire for justice (okay, vengeance, but Bank is such a baddie it feels just). They are less interested in personal spoils than in spoiling Bank's ill-gotten gains.

If there's a weakness with Ocean's Thirteen, it's that the hip-ness that makes it strong also keeps it very even and relaxed. It's amusing more than hilarious, intriguing more than suspenseful, stylish more than exciting. It doesn't so much climax as conclude. But it celebrates collaboration, ingenuity and loyalty in some immensely satisfying ways. And that's pretty cool.
I will probably see it ... sooner or later :)

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