@cbbred replied to your post “So Ocean’s Eight needed an actual in-movie conversation to justify why…”
It also would have been so easy in O11 to flip it and have Tess be more than an observer, like what they did with Daphne in O8.
Right? It would have been a great and surprising twist, but no, Tess couldn’t be working with them because part of the actual heist and plot against Benedict was Danny winning Tess back.
I mean, I don’t blame them for not pulling a particular twist, especially that early, and it’s not like I’m sitting here thinking O11 was a Bad Movie, but it doesn’t come off great that the only woman was effectively another target of the heist. All the fuss around these women-centered reboots/sequels, all the justification needed, the backlash, while the earlier versions with men were just accepted so matter of factly.
It’s why I appreciated O8 so much. I kind of get why there’s a gap between how the (male) critics and women are responding to it. It’s not just new for an Ocean’s movie, it’s rare at all to get a big movie with so many women and not have it be about their romantic lives and not have a m/f plot threaded throughout. I was happy and excited every time women were on screen and not caring about dudes, not just when the heist was accomplished or a twist was revealed or obstacles overcome.
I’m glad O8 diverged from O11 how it did. Both the movies start off similarly, an Ocean sibling getting out on parole, immediately seeking out their partner and putting in motion a heist + bonus revenge scheme they’d been going over and over in prison. But while Danny’s revenge was against the guy who his wife left him for, Debbie’s was against the guy who put her in jail. There was no winning him back, no chunk of the movie focused on that.
And I didn’t mind Becker not being as malicious as Benedict, I liked what a nonentity he ended up being. When you raise the stakes with the protagonists going against a cruel man who wants to personally hurt them, the tone changes dramatically when the protagonists are women. Part of O11′s actual heist plan was Danny being taken to a room to be beaten up. I would much rather watch the ladies bantering over that.