Last year, between the two of us, we watched an average of 317 movies.
This year our goal is to top that by watching at least one a day.
And as an extra special torture, we've decided to write about all of them.

04 July 2008

The Bucket List, dir. Rob Reiner (2007)

STEVE says:
So Lyndall says to me, she says, "Please don't do something so cliched as to review Independence Day tonight -- did I just spoil your idea?"

Now I'm about as patriotic as I am religious (six-of-one, in my opinion), and, no, I hadn't considered watching Independence Day (I shudder to think), but she got me thinking about watching something not necessarily patriotic, but something representative of America.

Easy Rider leaped to mind. What better represents the US than a couple of redneck Texans blasting Captain America to hell?

But we had The Bucket List at the house and it was due back -- overdue, likely -- so we decided to have a look at that instead.

Not a bad choice. Nicholson and Freeman are both reliable actors, if not great -- only because they seem be the same guy every time you see them, but they do it well so I'm not complaining. I expected the movie to be a little more saccharine than it was, actually, and the fact that it wasn't boosts it an extra half-point. The idea of two guys, both dying of cancer, going around the world in a last-ditch effort to do all the things they never got to do is the kind of thing that usually sends me right into a diabetic coma. But Nicholson and Freeman made the premise easier to swallow (or distracted me from it, I'm not sure which), and I found myself enjoying the movie in spite of myself.

On a side note, I must point out the scene where the two are riding pillion on a motorcycle, Nicholson behind Freeman, and I smiled silently to myself, thinking again of Easy Rider, specifically the scene where Nicholson is riding with Captain America. See, Morgan Freeman used to be on an educational TV show back in the day, called The Electric Company. On the show, he played a character named Easy Reader. So you see...

I'm giving The Bucket List a 3/5.

NIKKI says:
It just seemed like the perfect movie to cry to. Plus, while Steve feared the premise of two guys going about doing everything they want to do before they die, I crave such stories -- if one of them had've been a teacher with adoring students, I may have passed out from gleeful anticipation.

It was okay. Short and sweet were the words I think I used when it ended. It didn't pad out its premise, or overstay its welcome. It was quite simply about living a full life. There's nothing wrong with that. Steve's right that it held off on the sugar, which I think sets it apart from other movies like it. There's no big crying scenes, no watching the old guy get spottier as he loses consciousness. It didn't yank at the heart strings. I enjoyed that.

I also got into the discussions the guys were having. Morgan Freeman ever wise, and Jack ever wise-cracking. They were fun to watch. Were they any other actors, perhaps they wouldn't have been so endearing.

So, it was inoffensive fun, without the Tuesdays with Morrie melodrama.


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