Ocean’s 12 isn’t really a heist movie, unlike Ocean’s 11. Rather, like the original Rat Pack film, it’s an excuse for a bunch of highly charismatic stars to pal around and crack wise. But hey, they do it really well, so I’ve got no problem with that. Bonus points for the beautiful scenery, Vincent Cassel’s virtuoso martial arts dance, Robbie Coltrane’s gangster, and Catherine Zeta Jones.
Then while that’s going on, Soderbergh is making one of his indie films. Ocean’s 12 has all his trademarks: the over-exposed cinematography, jerky time sequences, offbeat camera angles, and so on. He caps it all off with an extended homage to Full Frontal that almost justifies Julia Roberts’ presence in the movie. I got the distinct impression that Soderbergh decided to sneak in his subversive frame-breaking cinematic ideology under the cover of a frothy star vehicle. (See also Confessions of a Dangerous Mind.) Kinda cool.