Directed by Steven Soderbergh, starring George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Julia Roberts, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Matt Damon, Don Cheadle, Bernie Mac, Andy Garcia, Elliott Gould and Vincent Cassel.
Steven Soderbergh's 2001 hit 'Ocean's Eleven' was a polished, sophisticated heist caper with a good cast and snappy dialogue. The material for a sequel was always there and cast and director have reunited to make a film that's just as slick as its predecessor, but less predictable.
Three years after the Bellagio job, the crew members have gone their separate ways and are trying to live life on the straight and narrow. Danny Ocean (Clooney) and wife Tess (Roberts) are about to celebrate their wedding anniversary in Connecticut and close pal Rusty Ryan (Pitt) is trying to get his hotel business off the ground. But a phone call from casino mogul Terry Benedict (Garcia) brings their past right back to haunt them. He wants his $160m back, with interest.
Danny reassembles his team and they set about finding a job that will pay enough for them to be able to pay off Benedict. This time, they have a deadline, but that's the least of their worries. Too well known to work in the US, they head to Europe, where they soon realise that they've got competition in the form of the Night Fox (Cassel). With time fast running out, Danny and company must pull off a risky venture before the Night Fox and before they get caught by Europol agent, and Rusty's former girlfriend, Isabel Lahiri (Zeta-Jones).
The fact that cast and director have reunited for the sequel is a good move, because it feels like we're picking up where we left off. The feel and look is similar to 'Ocean's Eleven' and you settle into it knowing that you're going to be entertained. The cast works well, particularly Clooney and Pitt, and the team's petty squabbles – such as the argument over the fact that the Bellagio job is now recognised as having been carried out by 'Ocean's Eleven' – make you laugh and really endear you to the characters.
There's also a lot more standing in the way of them making the heist work this time and you're never certain that they'll manage it, unlike in the first film, which was too predictable by far. However, the movie doesn't flow as easily as the original. It takes a good 45 minutes to really get into the action and even then it stops and starts throughout the rest of the film.
Nevertheless, fans of Clooney and co's first outing will enjoy this. It's a smart, classy caper that might just have another sequel in store.