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Every Member Of Ocean's Eleven Ranked

Steven Soderbergh's remake of "Ocean's Eleven" arrived in theaters in 2001 to wide critical acclaim. The film quickly became a modern classic with its mix of big names, great suits, and pitch-perfect banter. "Ocean's Eleven" was followed by two mostly well-received sequels as well as a reboot, "Ocean's 8," that outperformed each previous entry, proving that fans can't get enough of these star-studded heist films.

Of course, among any group, whether it's thieves or cast members, some stars are going to shine brighter than others. As such, we're ranking the members of the "Ocean's Eleven" heist crew. That's not to say that any of the members are not an important part of the film, just that some of them are a little more fun to spend time with. While no one can ignore Julia Roberts' appearance as Tess or Andy Garcia's brilliant turn as antagonist casino mogul Terry Benedict, those characters aren't members of the titular team and don't make the cut for this list. Here is every member of "Ocean's Eleven" ranked.

10. Tie - Turk and Virgil Malloy

The Malloy brothers are difficult to separate for a list like this, as they are basically attached at the hip throughout the film. However, this turns out to be a strength for these characters because the best comic moments we get from them come from their banter, like the perfectly escalating "Who ya callin' bud, pal?" sequence. They may also have the best introduction of all members of the titular Eleven, one that functions as a funny but poignant short film.

In a key "Ocean's Eleven" scene, the pair sets up a race between a real monster truck driven by Turk and a remote-controlled vehicle operated by Virgil. The RC car manages to hold its own as they race, and Virgil (Casey Affleck) laughs about how well things are going for him. Of course, Turk (Scott Caan) isn't happy about this, and he veers into the remote control car's lane, crushing it under the wheels of his truck. The movie then cuts to Virgil, whose expression quickly shifts from joy to disappointment. This introduction highlights what ends up being the brothers' greatest strength and weakness in this ranking — they don't need the other nine thieves to play off of because they have each other.

9. Livingston Dell

In a heist comedy that overwhelmingly keeps things light and fun, Livingston Dell (Eddie Jemison) delivers some of the most painfully tense and anxiety-inducing sequences in the film. After successfully hacking into the Bellagio's security system while wearing an IT uniform as a disguise, Livingston gets turned around in the maze-like taupe hallways of the casino's inner workings. Like most of the film, the scene is pretty funny, but it builds to a stressful climax when Livingston is spotted by a security guard who chases him down — only to hand him the device that he left behind in the server room.

This excellent demonstration of Dell's character highlights his anxiety, which gets him lost after he accidentally wipes a cheat-sheet map off his hand because of his excessive sweating. While there's a place for tension in a heist movie, the kind of nervous energy that Livingston brings to the table is at odds with the overall suaveness of the other members of the Eleven, which is why he ends up at number nine on this list.

8. Linus Caldwell

Linus (Matt Damon) feels like an audience stand-in character. After all, he's the new kid learning about this world of ultra-cool thieves the same way viewers do, even if his dad has been a part of this particular underground network for decades. While there's nothing inherently wrong with a character giving the audience a little perspective on the film's events, it sometimes makes Linus feel like a bit of a blank slate. 

Luckily, "Ocean's Eleven" doesn't forget about Linus, and he gets his moment to shine during the heist when he impersonates a Nevada Gaming Commission employee. He makes bad jokes and does a convincing job performing the part of a nervous novice, even fumbling some language about race to bait Frank into a staged confrontation. This is, of course, the cover that also allows the thieves to move through the inner workings of the casino (mostly) unnoticed and make their way to the vault. 

7. The Amazing Yen

Despite not speaking English for most of "Ocean's Eleven," The Amazing Yen (Shaobo Qin) gets some of the movie's most memorable bits of dialogue. When Danny and Linus finally enter the Bellagio vault after replacing the batteries on their wireless detonator, Yen emerges from the smoke and asks bluntly, "Where the f*** you been?" It's a perfectly delivered line that's a fan favorite for a good reason.

Of course, one great quote doesn't make a character, but Yen makes up for his relative silence with incredible physicality. He's limber enough to fit inside a vault cart and still has enough room to give Rusty a sassy middle finger when he asks if Yen wants a magazine. Yen is also agile enough to pull himself out of that cart, catch a briefcase left on top before it trips any alarms, and leap over the surrounding sensors to the vault doors. This sequence leads to the film's only real situation with a potentially fatal outcome when Yen gets his bandage caught in the vault door just as Danny and Linus are about to blow it. 

Beyond his great line and impressive acrobatic feats, Yen is also the focus of some of the other characters' most memorable quotes. From his introduction where Rusty says "he is the list" to the recurring "10 says he shorts it" bit, Yen is at the center of some of the best jokes in the film.

6. Frank Catton

Frank (Bernie Mac) isn't just an integral part of the heist as the man on the inside. He's also the first person that Danny visits after he gets out of prison. From their initial exchange, we can tell that Frank and Danny have a history and speak the same language. It's a simple scene, but it immediately characterizes Frank as just as cool, clever, and funny as the film's top-billed lead.

It's later, while Frank negotiates on the price of a van rental, that we get to see one of his best moments in the film. The van dealer gives Frank a price that's too high, and, as is polite, Frank says he understands and shakes the man's hand. In that handshake, we get a brilliant display of Frank thinking quickly on his feet to achieve results for the team. As Frank shakes the man's hand, he compliments him on the softness of his skin and begins an extensive monologue about his own failed attempts to build good skincare habits. Frank grips the man's hand during an awkward discussion of moisturizing techniques, and the movie slowly clues viewers into the fact that he's applying increasing pressure throughout the conversation.

This scene is a standout moment for Frank in the film, although he has several great lines throughout the heist. "Might as well call it white jack" is perhaps the best among them, but Frank has no shortage of classic quips in "Ocean's Eleven."

5. Saul Bloom

Saul (Carl Reiner) is the oldest member of the Eleven, but as he makes very clear to Danny when asked if he's ready, he's never to be doubted. Saul has decades of experience in the game and is a skilled actor who uses his thespian talents to play Lyman Zerga, an arms dealer with a special package arriving on the night of the heist.

Saul lands high on this list because he isn't just a great character as Saul — he's also a great character as Lyman. As Saul, he's quick-witted in a back and forth with Rusty during their first meeting, sets up one of the film's greatest jokes, and hilariously struggles to keep up with his younger counterparts as they rappel down an elevator shaft. As Lyman, he affects an unspecific Eastern European accent, charms Terry Benedict into allowing personal items into the casino vault, and cold-heartedly dispatches his thugs (played by Virgil and Turk) to get rid of someone who recognizes him as Saul.

Saul gives the movie's only true dual performance, and it's worth celebrating that he delivers memorable moments as both characters.

4. Basher Tarr

Don Cheadle's cockney accent as Basher Tarr is infamous. So infamous, in fact, that the actor has said he's fine accepting the fan theory that Basher is actually an American doing a bad cockney accent because he thinks it's cool, via UPROXX. But as with many bad things in great comedies, is it really that terrible if it makes us laugh? Basher's accent is undeniably inaccurate, but it's also undeniably funny watching Cheadle wrestle with it, especially for his most outrageous cockney dialogue.

Basher's most memorable lines in the movie come when he accentuates (pun intended) the fact that the audience can barely understand much of what the thieves discuss. It's also fun that there's an entire range of these lines, from the nearly incomprehensible "You want broke, blind, or bedlam?" to the lovely moment where Basher has to translate his rhyming slang for the other members of the heist team.

However, despite what fans may think of Basher's dialect, he's an essential part of the team. Basher is the one who thinks of using an electromagnetic pinch to knock out power in Las Vegas, which is a necessary aspect of the job. After all, without the pinch they would be in, as Basher would say, "Barney."

3. Reuben Tishkoff

In a movie full of great lines, Reuben (Elliott Gould) may have two of the best and most quotable pieces of dialogue. When Rusty and Danny initially come to Reuben to discuss their planned heist, he shares three stories about people who have tried and failed to rob casinos in the past. After these cautionary tales, he explains that even if anyone makes it out of the casino with money, "You're still in the middle of the f***ing desert!"

Of course, Reuben joins the job once he is told whose casinos the thieves are planning on robbing, and he hosts the initial planning session at his home. At first, the meeting is more of a party as the old and new friends catch up over hors d'oeuvres and beverages. Eventually, Danny calls the men into the house to ask if they're interested in something "highly lucrative and highly dangerous." Linus, meanwhile, sits outside by the pool as everyone else shuffles into the home. Reuben comes over to the group's youngest member, offers some quick and polite chit-chat, then tells Linus to "get in the god***n house."

Beyond being full of fantastic lines, Reuben is a crucial catalyst for the job. After all, Terry Benedict wronged Reuben, making him the target of not just Danny but the rest of the crew as well. Without Reuben, "Ocean's Eleven" would be an entirely different movie.

2. Danny Ocean

While "Ocean's Eleven" would be a very different film if it weren't for characters such as Reuben, there wouldn't be a movie at all if it weren't for Danny (George Clooney). The titular Ocean is a smooth criminal with access to an extensive network of fellow thieves and the brains to put together a big job like the Bellagio heist. However, Danny isn't just the mastermind of the operation. He's also its charismatic leader. Danny cares about all of the team members, and viewers see this in the targeting of Terry Benedict for Reuben and how he takes Linus under his wing throughout the film.

He's also the only romantic lead of the Eleven. Scenes like his speech to Rusty, followed by the very charming concern that he rushed it a bit, are just as important as Danny's scenes with Tess. That includes one of the most emotionally powerful exchanges in the film, which occurs when Danny asks Tess (Julia Roberts) if Benedict makes her laugh, to which she replies, "He doesn't make me cry."

Danny is the heart of the movie, not only as the center of its larger plot, but because his relationship with Tess is its emotional core.

1. Rusty Ryan

Danny may be the only one of the Eleven with his name in the movie's title, but Rusty (Brad Pitt) is the film's standout character. He's the one who does most of the recruiting, plays no less than three roles on the night of the heist, and calls Danny out when he discovers that his fellow thief has a personal stake in the job because of Tess. As viewers quickly learn, Rusty is Danny's right-hand man for a reason. If Danny is the one that masterminds the operation, Rusty is the one who makes things happen.

Beyond that, Rusty is also just really funny, constantly charming, and effortlessly cool. For instance, there's the way Rusty anticipates and responds to what Danny's going to say before Danny even finishes his sentences. Beyond that, the character is always incredibly relaxed and never feels compelled to put down his food, regardless of what's happening around him. Finally, there is the delightful scene in which Rusty controls a table full of young movie and TV stars attempting to learn poker.

Rusty is the most fun character to watch in "Ocean's Eleven," and he's the one that viewers most want to spend more time with. No wonder he's at the center of "Ocean's Twelve."