Tag Archives: Carl Reiner

Ocean’s Eleven (2001) 3.57/5 (2)

 

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Rating: The Good – 72.5
Genre: Crime
Duration: 116 mins
Director: Steven Soderbergh
Stars: George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Julia RobertsMatt Damon

Steven Soderbergh and friends take a working holiday in Las Vegas for this entertaining reworking of the Rat Pack’s heist comedy. George Clooney fills Sinatra’s shoes as Danny Ocean, the recently paroled con-man who assembles a motley crew to take down Andy Garcia’s ruthless casino owner while simultaneously nabbing his ex-wife (Julia Roberts) back from his clutches. Brad Pitt is the Dean Martin sidekick while Matt Damon, Don Cheadle, Casey Affleck, Scott Caan, Carl Reiner, and Elliot Gould among a couple of others complete the rest of the gang. A party-mode Soderbergh unleashes every bit of his directorial panache to craft the entire affair into an interminably slick feast for the eyes and ears – with a production budget to match (not content with taking over actual casinos, they even staged a title fight between Wladimir Klitshcko and Lennox Lewis). Playing the coolest versions of themselves, the cast cruise their way through the complicated and very well executed heist in a manner befitting the project’s ambitions with David Holmes’ repetitive but impossibly suave compositions providing the most complementary soundtrack imaginable. If it sounds, like a “can’t-miss” type of movie, allay your excitement somewhat because, though eminently fun, its lack of depth ensures that it’s a little cold. In the final analysis, Ocean’s Eleven is what you get when a bunch of talented movie guys spitball a movie concept around a poker table at 3 am. Lots of well conceived but ultimately stand alone moments in desperate need of some serious screenwriting to bind them together.

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The Jerk (1979) 2.07/5 (2)

 

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Rating: The Good – 75.1
Genre: Comedy
Duration: 94 mins
Director: Carl Reiner
Stars: Steve Martin, Bernadette Peters, Catlin Adams

Steve Martin doubters need to check out his earlier stuff, most of all this comedy explosion of originality and eccentricity. Martin plays the eponymous jerk who grew up believing he was black and makes it big through goofy charm and just plain luck. The unique comedic set pieces come thick and fast and while some of the one-liners miss their mark, the vast majority go down a treat. And what’s best, for the most part you won’t have seen anything like it before. Word has it that Stanley Kubrick and David Lynch were so impressed with The Jerk that they both approached Martin to work in one of their movies.

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