Debbie Ocean (Sandra Bullock) is a con artist just like her brother was. A thief just like her brother was and endearingly charming with high levels of smoulder, again just like her brother. Seriously how does one family generate such beautiful roguery?
Just released from prison Debbie has a plan. A plan to steal jewels. Not just any jewels a multi million dollar Cartier necklace that will adorn the neck of celebrity darling Daphne Kluger (Anne Hathaway). To get the job done and, because her name is Ocean, Debbie needs to put a team together.
If this all sounds vaguely familiar it's because it is. While not a step by step gender switch retread of Ocean's Eleven the same rules apply. Switch casino for Met Gala, Vegas for New York and the parallels are all too clear. This is not to say that this hampers the film, it does give it a little more reason to exist (no matter how loose the connection) than a generic all female team heist movie might, because sadly despite the best efforts of all involved it all falls a little flat.
Chemistry within the team is strong, no one seems out of place, and the relationship between Debbie and Lou (Cate Blanchett) is particularly watchable and probably needed a little more filling out. Helena Bonham Carter as fashion designer Rose Weil is all manner of kooky and her interactions with Hathaway's diva Kluger, in the early parts of the film, are a particular highlight.
Ultimately though, there is something that never quite makes this film click into gear. Sections of it feel particularly long, underwhelming and unnecessary. While the heist itself is tense at times it never fully feels like there is any true threat to this band of sisters ventures. A bumbling James Corden appearing in the final third does nothing to improve things, and could even be accused of removing what little momentum the film had left within it.
This film is perfectly decent Saturday night entertainment but overall Ocean's 8 doesn't have the same magic as the Clooney inflected franchise starter did all those years ago. As much as I wanted this film to be a brilliant romp of a heist, sadly it just doesn't create the characters, relationships or moments of suspense that its predecessors did.
While not a complete failure the trails of living in your big brother's shadow is that you will always be compared (perhaps unfairly) to the things he has achieved in the past. This film highlights the the pros and cons of carrying the family name and sadly there are more of the latter.
Ocean's 8 is in cinemas from 18th June.