Sunday, December 12, 2004

Oceans 12. ( Pretentious, Uncool, Boring, Crap)

This is a kind of movie where no situation is serious enough. The actors joke and make smart ass comments about anything ranging from a handicapped person to nuclear disaster. The movie through its actors tries to be cool. Ofcourse all situations are plainly unreal (which is okay) but the element of contrivedness is a little bit too much that substance loses out to style.

I am all okay for "cool" movie but "coolness" should be icing on the cake rather than just icing and no cake. It would have been better if Sodenberg had focussed on one theme or one plot and let the actors revolve around it rather than interwine multiple themes with multiple roles and a screenplay that is not so much chronological to boot. In general Julia Roberts plays too much of an intelligent smartass in most of her movies. I think she has done enough of the " I am witty, classy, superior, sarcastic person " roles and she better put a lid on that dimension of her acting career and focus on more real ones.

Okay the story ( if at all this is of any concern to the audience) begins by introducing character after character like reading out names of in an attendance register. But before all that the movie introduces itself by showing Brad pitt and Catherine Zeta Jones as lovers. This is where the movie begins to show off its coolness. Catherine is a police officer ( or something to that effect.. Brad Pitt says "she is a detective"). We don't even have a clue as to what her designation is? whats her job profile?, which country she works for? and what the hell is Europol? The movie has no time for such things. It has to juggle around 15 people in 150 minutes. This transalates to 10 minutes per character. Which is exactly how much we get to see every character in the movie ( Brad Pitt and Clooney included). So from what C.Z.Jones says ( a total of 7 words or so), we understand she is sort of a police person and when she updates lover Bradd Pitt on her status (as it always happens) we find out he is the person she trying to track down ( we arent sure if she knows that or not but she later claims she always knew.. so there you go!). Anyway when Brad Pitt hears of the clues she has found so far ( a strand of hair, boot marks etc) he rues his mistake of leaving those clues behind. But he is not overly perturbed, he reacts in a way we would react if our bathroom pipe sprung a leak for the sixth time ( " oh no! not again" ). So that is the definition of "cool" for you. The situation is life-threatening serious but to the players it is an everyday thing. So once you get this "cool" thing understood the movie is about repeating the same thing again and again.

So Andy Garcia returns( he appears for about 4 minutes in this movie). He tracks down every person of Ocean's 11 and gives them 2 weeks to return the money back ( Plus interest). He's already got the money from the insurance company but this he does for vendatta. After he painfully goes all over the world to exchange two sentences with every crook, we see the crooks assemble in some place for a board-meeting sort of discussion. The have discussions ranging from naming their organization to the amount each guy owes. All this is too spoofy and again attempting to be soo 'cool' that it almost looks childish.

They plan some scheme of looting a handicapped man's art things. Someday these movies have to stop robbing itsy bitsy art stuff and get around to robbing a regular bank, which has real cash. I am sick and tired of sophisticated James Bonds in Suit and Tie robbing some painting, which looks like crap, and then claiming it was $60 million heist.

Moving on..after some technicalities on how to rob the dude's place ( they lift the house-level up so that the computer-dude in Ocean's org can stick his secret code breaker thing and crack the code.. Such things are almost assumed as "can-be-done"), they find that some crazy fellow called "Night Fox" has already robbed whatever-it-was Ocean wanted to loot. All this is told in a see-saw time sequence with the movie telling from Time X perspective as to how the events unfolded in Time X-10, X-8 etc. Catherine Zeta is the i-know-it-all-i-can-feel-the-criminal-thoughts pyschic kind of cop( still no clue whom she works for) who based on looking at the house can exactly recollect what happened there. We get to know the details when she imagines ( with a smile ) "what happened". Here I am thinking, " dude! I am seeing the movie.. I can see all the characters..i dunno whats going on.. how come she does ?" So we learn Night Fox is a competitor robber. It seems he wants to be known as the "best robber in the world". He was offended that his Guru-Mentor-Master ( Some other boring great legendary thief called Le Marke) agreed that Ocean was the best thief ever. So he arranged a deal with Garcia to give Ocean two weeks so that he could get into real-time competition with Ocean. The movie begins to fall flat from this point onwards ( if it already wasnt razed to the ground). Really these people have to stop this glory stories on great art theives and their legends. I am frankly bored.

What happens next? and the ending are load of crap! It reduces to movie to a farce and makes you realize that regardless of T-2, Shrek-2 and the Indiana Jones movies, making a sequel is not always such a good idea. There is a scene where Julia roberts plays Julia Roberts ( yes! i am not kidding). So Matt Daemon ( whose 10 minutes in this movie has at least 7 minutes dedicated to making him look like a clown) feels that Tess Ocean Playing Julia Roberts ( there is a striking similarity between them it seems.. puke) could be a nice idea to help rob some golden egg thing kept in a museum ( ya! those laser lights which guard these crappy art things are also there). This leads to the crappy self-referenntial scene. Then there is stupid sequence involving Bruce Willis playing himself who keeps asking stupid questions to Julia Roberts ( who plays herself but is not really her.. oh! my god.. crap fest) and traps her. The movie shoots itself in the foot at this point and loses the audience forever.

Catherine zeta jones is not the 12th person in Ocean's 12 because (a) she is not (b) she is a cop (c) julia roberts. But she does all she can to aid ocean and team do their stuff. She talks with Bradd Pitt like they were college kids trying to grab a date and play some love games ( hey! you are a police kind of person remember and he is a robber.. come on!!). She forges signature on some inter-government agreement papers, steals Bradd Pitt's phone ( who in-turn could easily have reported the phone as lost and cancelled subscription anytime but does not do so.. just to allow a joke on the phone to find a place in the movie a few scenes later). C.Z.Jones's is the lamest character in the movie. Turns out Le Marke is her father. Ooh! That was a surprise which I knew before the title sequence began. Horse Crap!

This confusing stupid pretentious movie has some extra-ordinarily trite sequences involving Matt Daemon's mom coming to his rescue and him begging her not to tell this to his dad ( oh! man). The movie ends with a stupid sequence of Julia Roberts and Clooney doing the come-uppance on Night Fox. With both narrating how they stole that egg thing. It involves that stupid choerographic dance thing where night hawk evades those laser lights to steal the egg ( similar to the one catherine herself did in entrapment.. but i guess since everybody does only 10 minutes in the movie they dont really know whats going on in the other 140 minutes). I would just post 2 guards 24 X 7 to watch the stupid egg instead of the boring laser lights.. much cheaper and more effective. Finally it turns out, after a long pretentious scene with lot of smug over-acting by Julia Roberts, that Ocean won the game. I never felt so happy walking out of the theater before ..the relief when a bad movie finally ends its agony is better than the satisfaction of watching a good movie.


Anonymous said...

What a coincidence. We watched the movie on Saturday....what a colossal waste of time n money...
I thought Oceans-I was much better (remember, U, Anbu, Jai n I watched it in KC)...I seriously didn't understand what was going on in the movie most of the time...

Anonymous said...


Julia Robersts should not act. She is not hot/beautiful,she cannot act, she has very bad screen presence..there is nothing about her that I like.
She shouldnt have got a single movie after erin brock..whatever. Instead she gets an oscar and gets $20 million every movie.
My blood boils when I see her on TV:)


Hawkeye said...

//* (remember, U, Anbu, Jai n I watched it in KC).*//

ya :-) how can we forget that. i pulled jai's precious cap from his head and the big baby refused to drive until the cap was put back on his head.

I wont go into much further detail as i did something that weekend which jai might blackmail me with ( unless he forgot)

I still crack up when i think of that! boy we really had a nice time that weekend!

Alien said...

The people who made this movie think audiences are stupid, over 21 and have not passed LKG yet. What a waste of time!!!
Im surprised this movie wasn't ripped apart by reviewers. shows a tomatometer reading of 61%(i.e good). Most movies suck nowadays. The only good movie that I've seen in the past couple of months in a theater was 'The Incredibles'. Whats going on?

Anonymous said...

hahaha...that movie was soooo stupid man...shucks!!!!

i really din't believe people when they said that this was a crappy movie...i mean...i reallly liked oceans 11 a was a very smart,slick movie.

The only good thing towards the end of this movie was that people in the theatres dint seem to mind the comments that me n my friends were yelling out cos i think no one in the crowd got the movie!!!!

Everyone was goin...."oh!!!...the guy's her father...ok???....who da hell is matt damon's mother?...oh! the movie's over,is it????".

it was just too funny:):).
i liekd traffic a lot too...but lookin at soderberghs last two movies (before this he made a movie called full frontal...which was abt 500 billion times worse than ocens 12)....i dont think ill be watchin any more of his movies...

Suresh Ramani said...

Thanks for saving 150 minutes of my life .. you really went the distance to trash this movie .. the first two paras would have worked for me!