Movie Reviews

10 Best Movies Like Ocean's Eleven

Summary

  • The Ocean’s franchise inspired other entertaining heist films like Mission: Impossible and Now You See Me with engaging ensemble casts.
  • Similar to Ocean’s Eleven, films like The Town and National Treasure turn simple heists into thrilling adventures with twists and charm.
  • The Gentlemen, Baby Driver, and Catch Me If You Can offer a mix of humor, style, and excitement in the heist genre like Ocean’s Eleven.

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Though Steven Soderbergh’s film is entirely unique with its hugely entertaining take on the heist genre, there are several other movies like Ocean’s Eleven that inspired (or were inspired by) this classic thriller. The film follows a group of talented criminals who are brought together by Danny Ocean (George Clooney), a charismatic thief looking to bring down a chain of casinos in Las Vegas and steal $160 million. It’s a fantastic ensemble piece, boasting a hugely proficient roster of actors who bring their respective characters to life with charming performances and memorable dialogue.

The success of Ocean’s Eleven spawned a series of entertaining sequels that see Danny and his friends embark on even more high-stakes heists. Though none of these follow-ups have been able to match the greatness of Soderbergh’s original, it’s the returning actors that make them so consistently fun to watch. Ocean’s Eleven is among the best heist movies out there, and while few films can match the heist franchise’s quality and entertainment value, that doesn’t mean there aren’t other great additions to the genre that have benefited from Ocean’s Eleven’s existence.

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The Ocean’s movies epitomize the Hollywood heist movie genre. From Frank Sinatra to George Clooney to Sandra Bullock’s, we rank the 5 Ocean’s films.

10 Mission: Impossible (1996)

Ethan Hunt Attempts To Flush Out A Mole

Mission: Impossible (1966)

Cast
Peter Graves , Barbara Bain , Greg Morris , Peter Lupus , Martin Landau , Leonard Nimoy , Lynda Day George , Steven Hill

Release Date
September 17, 1966

Seasons
7

Creator(s)
Bruce Geller

Though Brian De Palma’s original Mission: Impossible is often forgotten among the success of its sequels, that doesn’t make IMF agent Ethan Hunt’s (Tom Cruise) first outing any less fun. In the movie, Hunt is the only surviving member of his IMF team after they are ambushed on a mission and he is framed as a traitor. Attempting to clear his name, he realizes he must steal the very thing his enemy is after in order to draw out the real mole.

While Mission: Impossible differs quite strongly in its narrative, both films share the same dry humor and witty dialogue that makes them so easy to watch.

With high stakes, flashy editing, and some thrilling heist sequences, it’s a clear source of inspiration for the Ocean’s franchise. While Mission: Impossible differs quite strongly in its narrative, both films share the same dry humor and witty dialogue that makes them so easy to watch. Both projects also spawned several sequels that get increasingly bolder too.

9 Now You See Me (2013)

A Group Of Magicians Pull Off Daring Heists

Now You See Me

Director
Louis Leterrier

Release Date
May 31, 2013

Runtime
115 minutes

Now You See Me’s complex ending might have been too much for some audiences, but it remains an extremely bold and daring entry into the heist genre. Taking this classic concept and giving it a twist of magic, Now You See Me follows a group of low-level magicians (Jesse Eisenberg, Woody Harrelson, Isla Fisher, and Dave Franco) who find themselves hired by a mysterious benefactor to pull off a large-scale heist that will take the world by storm.

Both films are hugely entertaining and use their complex narratives to keep the viewer on their toes from start to finish, keeping the truth hidden until the very end. It is a glossy and fun heist blockbuster that looks to be going for the same tone as the Ocean’s movie with a star-studded cast of actors playing likable thieves whom the audience can root for.

8 The Town (2010)

A Bank Robber Falls For A Witness

The Town

Release Date
September 17, 2010

Runtime
125 minutes

Although Ben Affleck’s The Town is much darker and less whimsical than Ocean’s Eleven, both films share a clear ability to turn a simple heist into a thrilling adventure with plenty of twists and turns along the way. The Town follows a group of criminals led by Doug MacRay (Affleck) on their final heist, but things quickly turn complicated after Doug falls in love with their hostage (Rebecca Hall).

It’s one of Affleck’s best directorial outings, not only because of the exciting narrative but also because of how well-crafted and proficient it is on a technical level. There are some excellent grounded heist sequences, including the intense and thrilling shootout at Fenway Park in the movie’s climax. It also features a strong supporting cast of Blake Lively, Jon Hamm, and Jeremy Renner in an Oscar-nominated performance. Like Ocean’s Eleven, it uses flashy editing and sharp cuts to its advantage.

7 National Treasure (2004)

A Treasure Hunter Investigates An American Legend

National Treasure

Director
Jon Turteltaub

Release Date
November 19, 2004

Cast
Nicolas Cage , Justin Bartha , Sean Bean , Harvey Keitel , Christopher Plummer , Diane Kruger , Jon Voight

Runtime
131 minutes

While National Treasure is much more of a sprawling adventure than Ocean’s Eleven, both films are surprisingly similar in their overall tone and approach to storytelling. National Treasure follows Benjamin Franklin Gates (Nicolas Cage), as he attempts to steal the Declaration of Independence and use its secrets to locate a long-lost treasure, making it one of the highest-stakes heist stories ever made.

It features one of Cage’s best characters, with his sharp humor mirroring the witty comedy of the Ocean’s Eleven script. They both hide clues throughout their story (almost like a scavenger hunt for the audience) that place the twists in plain sight without ever making them obvious. Cage is also joined by a lot of fun actors, including Diane Kruger, Harvey Keitel, and Sean Bean. As a sign of its popularity decades after its release, fans are still waiting for National Treasure 3 to happen.

6 The Gentlemen (2019)

An American In England Guild A Marijuana Empire

If there’s one director who knows how to write and direct a crime ensemble, it’s Guy Ritchie — and The Gentlemen is among his most entertaining and rewatchable projects to date. Just like Ocean’s Eleven, the film follows an eccentric gang of criminals (Matthew McConaughey, Charlie Hunnam, and more) as they learn to work together in an interconnected narrative of power and conflict.

The Gentlemen is a little more mature and gritty than Ocean’s Eleven, but it shares much of the same humor and wit. Every single character, no matter how pivotal they are to the story, is written brilliantly, with the entire cast bringing something fresh and original to their role with the standouts being Colin Farrell as a grounded boxing coach and Hugh Grant as a seedy journalist. Ritchie later expanded the universe of The Gentlemen into the recent TV series spinoff that continues to carry the same vibe.

5 Baby Driver (2017)

A Getaway Driver Pulls Off Jobs With The Help Of His Playlist

Baby Driver

Release Date
June 28, 2017

Cast
Jamie Foxx , Jon Hamm , Jon Bernthal , Ansel Elgort , Lily James , Eiza Gonzalez , Kevin Spacey

Runtime
113 minutes

Baby Driver is filled with hidden details and quick jokes that are easy to miss upon the first watch, but they really bring the film to life and keep things interesting from start to finish. It follows the titular young getaway driver (Ansel Elgort), who finds himself caught up in the dangerous world of crime and power. The movie also uses music in a brilliant way, scoring each of the action sequences to make for Baby Driver‘s memorable soundtrack.

It also shares the same astute music choices and rhythmic editing.

With Baby Driver, director Edgar Wright flipped the genre on its head and created something equal parts hilarious and thrilling that’s clearly inspired by Soderbergh’s comedy and stylish filmmaking in Ocean’s Eleven. It also shares the same astute music choices and rhythmic editing. The movie also features a strong cast, including Jon Hamm, Jamie Foxx, Lily James, and Jon Bernthal.

4 Casino Royale (2006)

James Bond Takes On An Arms Dealer

Casino Royale

Director
Martin Campbell

Release Date
November 14, 2006

Runtime
144 minutes

The first movie in Daniel Craig’s tenure as James Bond might not strictly fall within the heist genre, but it still shares several similarities with Soderbergh’s Ocean’s Eleven. The story sees Bond embark on his first big mission as a 007 to prevent a wealthy banker named Le Chiffre (Mads Mikkelsen) from winning a high-stakes poker game.

In the eyes of many, Casino Royale remains Craig’s best Bond movie with the actor giving audiences a grittier and more powerful 007 while also having the charm and the humor that are essential for the role. The movie looks to take things back to a grounded place the franchise had veered away from, but it also doesn’t take itself too seriously. These are traits that it clearly shares with Ocean’s Eleven, whichallow both films to thrive and rise above the typical pitfalls of the genre.

3 Catch Me If You Can (2002)

A Young Con Artist Evades The FBI

Catch Me If You Can is among Steven Spielberg’s funniest movies, never taking itself too seriously and constantly letting the humor drive the narrative forward. It follows the story of real-life criminal Frank Abagnale (Leonardo DiCaprio), a young man who entered that world with something as simple as writing fake checks in his teenage years and subsequently became one of the most successful con artists in American history, successfully posing as a doctor, lawyer, and PanAm pilot. During these cons, he illegally acquired millions of dollars.

Much like Ocean’s Eleven, the film’s screenplay is its strongest asset — it knows exactly how to balance the exciting narrative with just enough humor to elevate the story without ever overshadowing it. It’s also filled with entertaining performances from the likes of DiCaprio, Tom Hanks, and Amy Adams that shape this unbelievable yet fun true-crime story.

2 Hell Or High Water (2016)

Two Brothers Set Out On A Bank-Robbing Road Trip

Hell or High Water

Director
David Mackenzie

Release Date
August 12, 2016

Cast
Gil Birmingham , Kristin Berg , Ben Foster , Jeff Bridges , Buck Taylor , Dale Dickey , Chris Pine , William Sterchi

Runtime
97minutes

One of Taylor Sheridan’s best scripts, Hell or High Water follows the story of two brothers (Chris Pine and Ben Foster) who resort to robbing banks after their financial situation takes a serious turn for the worse. As the brothers embark on a crime road trip, heading towards their clever final goal, they are pursued by an aging lawman (Jeff Bridges) determined to bring them down as his last attempt at glory.

Exciting from start to finish, it is a thrilling heist movie that represents the very best of the genre. While Hell or High Water doesn’t quite have the witty humor that makes Ocean’s Eleven so memorable, it sacrifices this for a more emotional, engaging narrative about the relationship between the brothers. However, despite being at opposite ends of the heist genre, both films master it beautifully.

1 The Nice Guys (2016)

A Private Eye And An Enforcer Team To Solve A Mystery

The Nice Guys

Director
Shane Black

Release Date
May 20, 2016

Runtime
116minutes

With its dark-humored take on the buddy cop genre, there aren’t many movies like The Nice Guys. As private eye Holland March and enforcer Jackson Healey, Ryan Gosling and Russell Crowe have crackling onscreen chemistry. The two become unlikely partners as they find themselves working on the same missing person’s case in 1970s Los Angeles.

While it’s primarily a comedy, The Nice Guys is a captivating thriller whose narrative intelligence is very reminiscent of Soderberg’s Ocean’s Eleven franchise. It’s filled with twists and turns that keep the audience guessing throughout, using its bold characters and complex mystery to drive the story forward at every opportunity. Its charming style and tone are very reminiscent of the Ocean’s movies, and caper fans will enjoy the ride. Though a box office bomb, it has become a cult favorite in the years since.

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