Sunday, March 2, 2014

The Bucket List

The Bucket List; tragicomedy, USA, 2007; D: Rob Reiner, S: Morgan Freeman, Jack Nicholson, Sean hayes, Beverly Todd, Rob Morrow

Mechanic Carter and rich hospital owner Edward Cole are both diagnosed with a terminal form of cancer and have only a couple of months to live. Since they share the same hospital room, they get the idea of making a 'bucket list', i.e. all the things they always wanted to do before they die. Thanks to Edward's wealth, they travel across the globe and see the pyramids, the Taj Mahal, the warm Mediterranean, the African wildlife...In the end, Carter decides to stop the trip and return to spend his last days with his wife and family. When he dies, Edward complies with his last wish - to search for his own estranged daughter and make up with her before his own death.

"The Bucket List" is, similarly like the French film "Intouchables", a film that presents a very depressive and dark theme in a very cheerful and happy manner, a story about dying that ends up as a celebration of life. In doing so, it turns slightly too simplistic in its depiction of two terminally-ill cancer patients, yet its goal was an entirely different point, which can be forgiven. Jack Nicholson again cannot resist not to add a few of his mannerisms and typical 'domination' in scenes, yet overall he gave a surprisingly touching and underrated performance as the rich Edward Cole, and even turned out humble in the ending where he gave the best quote in the entire film ("The last three months of his life were the best three months of my life"). Morgan Freeman is great as always, this time as Carter, who learns to let go and enjoy his life. The story could have been more inventive - in certain moments, it seems Edward and Carter just 'pass by' certain landmarks in the journey across the world - yet the movie never allows that its emotions turn sentimental, and has a few good meant pearls of wisdom along the way.


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