The Bucket List (12A)

The ViewNewcastle Review

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Review byMatthew Turner13/02/2008

Two out of Five stars
Running time: 97 mins

The Nicholson-Freeman double act ensures that this remains just about watchable but otherwise it's a dull, unimaginative drama that's nowhere near as moving or life-affirming as it thinks it is.

What's it all about?
Morgan Freeman plays Carter Chambers, a mechanic with a loving family who develops cancer shortly before his retirement. In hospital for diagnosis, he meets Edward Cole (Jack Nicholson), a multi-millionaire who made a fortune through private hospitals but only has an estranged daughter to show for it.

When the two men are told that their cancers are terminal, they strike up an unlikely friendship and decide to make the most of their remaining months by living life to the fullest. To that end they draw up The Bucket List - a list of things to do before they kick the bucket – and set off on a round the world trip together.

The Good
Your enjoyment of The Bucket List is largely going to depend on how big a fan of Nicholson and Freeman you are, because there's precious little else to recommend it beyond their performances and a nice supporting turn from Sean Hayes as Edward's assistant. Neither of the leads are really stretching themselves here (Freeman: kindly and wise; Nicholson: lecherous and coarse) but it's fun to watch them bickering with each other – at least for the first 30 minutes or so.

The Bad
Of course, if you're going to have a Bucket List, it helps if one of you is a multi-millionaire with access to a private jet, though this immediately removes any sense of drama from what they're actually doing and it quickly degenerates into been there, done that-style travelogue. Similarly, the script isn't strong enough to bring any emotional depth to their situation.

In addition, the CGI on some of the scenes (most notably the heavily-trailed sky-diving scene) is the worst for quite some time and looks horribly fake throughout.

Worth seeing?
In short, The Bucket List is only worth seeing if you're a big Nicholson or Freeman fan. Disappointing.

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Content updated: 24/07/2012 02:23

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