Gus is not only somebody who I love a lot but is also who has taught me, maybe more than anybody else in film." Affleck found a degree of commercial success when he was cast in Steven Soderbergh's heist comedy Ocean's Eleven (2001), starring George Clooney, Brad Pitt and Damon.
Affleck had the wherewithal to bare more of the passive-aggressive rage inside ...Stephen Hunter of the Washington Post remarked: "Affleck's interesting ..He probably can't be a star in big movies because his drawback is a voice that sounds like a snivel drawn through a wet nasal passage into a whine ...Parts of it are close to genius; most of it is actively torturous to watch." Reflecting on the experience in 2016, Affleck said: "We never thought people would actually think it was real ...In hindsight, we should have had a press junket and done talk shows and said how it was a mockumentary." Mark Olsen of the Los Angeles Times said Affleck "showcases his uncanny ability to project a person holding two thoughts in his head at once, as he often gives away nothing in his face to convey the firestorm obviously raging in his soul." Michael Phillips of the Chicago Tribune said: "He has great instincts when it comes to morally compromised anti-heroes, and without trolling for our sympathy, Affleck's Bob is more than just a collection of behaviors; it's a smartly considered performance." Claudia Puig of USA Today found his performance as an Iraq War veteran dealing with posttraumatic stress disorder "completely captivating ...Affleck reconnected with his father during visits to California as a teenager: "I got to know him, really, because he was sober for the first time ...The man I knew before that was just completely different." However, he did not graduate: "I would do a semester of school, go do a movie ...He then had a string of successful films in the early 2010s, with Tower Heist, Para Norman, and Interstellar, and received particular praise for his performance as an outlaw in the indie film Ain't Them Bodies Saints.In 2016, Affleck starred as the lead in the drama film Manchester by the Sea.'" Affleck's first leading role was in 2006's little-seen independent comedy-drama Lonesome Jim, directed by Steve Buscemi.He played a depressed writer who returns from New York to live with his parents in Indiana, and begins a relationship with Liv Tyler's character.