Blu-ray Review: Ocean's 8

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Those who liked Steven Soderbergh's Ocean's series will likely take some interest in Ocean's 8 (now on Blu-ray, 4K UltraHD, and DVD via Warner Bros. Home Entertainment). Soderbergh cedes the reins to director Gary Ross (the auteur behind the criminally underrated Free State of Jones), but retains a producing credit here. The gimmick, for lack of a better word, is that this Ocean's is led by Debbie Ocean (Sandra Bullock), Danny's sister. She puts together an all-female team in order to pull off diamond heist worth a considerable sum of money.

Ocean's 8 is not all that memorable (neither were Soderbergh's Ocean's entries, entertaining as they were), but it works as well as it does due to its strong cast. The leaders here are Bullock and Cate Blanchett, the latter as Debbie's longtime partner Lou. While these Oscar winners appear to be having fun working together, the exceedingly light material doesn't exactly challenge them to rise above the pulpy level. The supporting cast has many bright spots—Anne Hathaway shines as glamorous actress Daphne Kluger, a patsy who just might be smarter than Debbie and Lou initially believe.

The mechanics of the heist itself are what's most fun about Ocean's 8 and director Ross keeps things moving briskly. Talk show host James Corden enters late in the story as an investigator bound to solve the case. When the gals—also including Crazy Rich Asians co-star Awkwafina (née Nora Lum) as small-time con artist Constance and singer Rihanna as ace hacker Nine Ball—pull off a $150 million job, it raises more than a few eyebrows. As razor-sharp John Frazier, Corden turns in a slyly funny performance.

Warner Bros.' Blu-ray edition doesn't add a ton of extra content, but there are three frothy featurettes that total about 40 minutes. The longest of the three (clocking in at about 13 minutes), "Ocean's Team 3.0," delves into various aspects of the film's strongest assets—it's ensemble cast. The other two discuss the costumes ("A Heist in Heels") and the challenges inherent in the crew's staging of the annual Met Gala ("Reimagining the Met Gala"). Two deleted scenes are here too, but they don't add a whole lot and were wisely cut.

Ocean's 8 isn't particularly memorable, which is in keeping with the earlier boys-only entries in the series. It's one of those movies that begins to evaporate from the memory once the credits role. But at 110 fast-paced minutes, it isn't a bad way to pass an evening.

Ocean's 8 BD.jpg

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Chaz Lipp is a Las Vegas-based musician and freelance writer. His new jazz album 'Good Merlin' is now available.

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