Reviewed by: Eric Scott Robertson
a man saving his princess from danger
robbery in the Bible
George Clooney … Danny Ocean
Julia Roberts … Tess Ocean
Brad Pitt … Rusty Ryan
Matt Damon … Linus Caldwell
Andy Garcia … Terry Benedict
Bernie Mac … Frank Catton
Elliott Gould … Reuben Tishkoff
Casey Affleck … Virgil Malloy
Scott Caan … Turk Malloy
Carl Reiner … Saul Bloom
Shaobo Qin … Yen
Don Cheadle … Basher Tarr
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“Ocean’s Eleven,” a remake of the 1960s film with the same name, focuses on one Danny Ocean (George Clooney) who puts together a team of eleven men who plan to pull off the most-successful-ever $150 million Las Vegas casino heist. The movie is so engaging that I found myself guiltlessly rooting for these con artists, even though I knew what they’re doing is completely wrong. But it’s hard not to like this Hollywood hottie “brat pack”, which includes Clooney, Pitt, and Damon balanced out by the older Carl Reiner and Elliot Gould (who also plays Monica’s Dad in TV’s “Friends”). Reiner gives a wonderful performance, and for Clooney “Ocean’s Eleven” is his most impressive work since exiting “ER”. Brad Pitt’s character ate through the whole movie—what’s up with that? Maybe it’s an inside joke?!
“Ocean’s Eleven” is without a doubt a fun way to spend a few hours on a Friday night. It was very entertaining and surprisingly clean compared to other films of its genre. The only sexually suggestive content included some showgirls/exotic dancers as background candy in a scene, but not displaying much skin. The language is very mild with only 2 “f” words, an obscene hand gesture, and a couple of religious profanities.
It would be interesting to compare this remake with the original, which starred Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, and Sammy Davis, Jr. So while I can’t compare the two, several critics are actually proclaiming this remake even better then the original. How often does that happen?
From a Biblical perspective, this movie does capture the bright lights of the Las Vegas casinos including cigar smoke, shots of hard liquor, and plenty of money money money—all in a somewhat glamorized setting due to the pretty faces of Julia Roberts, Pitt, Damon, and Clooney. However, it’s pretty obvious this film is just good fun and nothing that any rational person would take too seriously. Chances are teens who see this film won’t run out to become high stakes gamblers or decide to pull off a heist of their own.
$150 million split eleven ways? Hmm… I think there’s enough FLESH in all of us to ponder that for a moment or two. it’s the decision that counts, and stealing, no matter what or its value, is clearly wrong according to the Bible (see “What does God expect of me?”). Or, for a thought-provoking look at what a large sum of money obtained through questionable means can do to a life’s relationships, see Billy Bob Thornton’s “A Simple Plan”.
The MPA rating is appropriate. Kids should stay away, but for teens and up this may be a pleasant time. I’d say Hollywood did a pretty good job of bringing this movie back to the big screen.