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Ocean's Twelve

By Harry Forbes
Catholic News Service

NEW YORK (CNS) -- "Ocean's Eleven" took in a whopping $183 million at the box office, and its sequel is likely to make off with even more.

The fitfully entertaining caper film "Ocean's Twelve" (Warner Bros.) has much the same star-studded cast as before: George Clooney, Julia Roberts, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon, Don Cheadle and Bernie Mac. Here, though, they're joined by Catherine Zeta-Jones as a Europol agent, and the story is set in picturesque European locales -- Rome, Paris, Amsterdam -- rather than Las Vegas.

Since their last heist three and a half years earlier, the larcenous crew has tried to go straight and ring-leader Danny Ocean (Clooney) is living a quiet domestic life with wife Tess (Roberts). But now they must pay back entrepreneur Terry Benedict (Andy Garcia) from whose casino, you'll recall, they stole $160 million in the first film. The hoped-for quarry here is a Faberge egg housed in a Rome museum, which the team sets out to steal by outwitting master jewel thief Francois Toulour (Vincent Cassel), with Zeta-Jones' character on their trail.

In addition to the starry leads, there are a couple of unbilled big-name cameos -- with Carl Reiner, Elliott Gould and Cherry Jones, who has an especially delicious scene with Damon -- adding luster to the deluxe casting. The principal pleasure of the film is watching all the big names work so amiably together, seeming to have a good time. At one point Roberts gets to impersonate her real-life self, a droll if obvious touch.

Director Steven Soderbergh's sequel is agreeable rather than grippingly suspenseful, and the script, by George Nolfi, more genial than truly witty, though there are some mildly surprising twists and turns along the way.

Refreshingly, for an action film, there are no guns and there's only minimal violence.

Because of tongue-in-cheek glamorization of robbery and some crude language, the USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is A-III -- adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 -- parents are strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.

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Forbes is director of the Office for Film & Broadcasting of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.


Copyright (c) 2004 Catholic News Service/USCCB. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or otherwise distributed.
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