Bucket List=”A number of experiences or achievements that a person hopes to have or accomplish during their lifetime. – Oxford Dictionary
The Bucket List, the 2007 Comedic Drama, directed by Rob Reiner and written by Justin Zackham. Is the story of two old men, Carter ( Morgan Freeman ) a family man full of trivial knowledge who’s worked as a mechanic for the past 45 years and Edward ( Jack Nicholson ) a grumpy, multi-billionaire hospital corporation CEO with no family. Since the two know they will die soon, they pursue a bucket list, the two travel the world on a quest to fufill said list.
WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD:
Edward meets Carter in a hospital room that he owns, at first they can’t stand each other. As they talk and spend time together they gradually tolerate the other’s existance more. One day, a doctor walks in and tells Carter that he’s going to die of cancer, giving him six months-to a year. To cheer him up, Edward gets Carter out of the hospital to fufill each other’s bucket lists.
The first thing they decide to do is…sky diving! Carter being more reserved hesitates until being thrown off by his instructor. Edward on the other hand, jumps nearly without hesitation. Even risking not pulling the cord to get more time out of the jump. Afterwards the two go racecar driving, Carter gradually showing more fun as the events go on, being a bit playful, intentionally bumping into Edward’s car.
The two then travel to a fancy restaurant in France, enjoying top-notch Mediteranian food. During a discussion about life, Carter reveals he has a daughter, who he hasn’t seen in years. Edward gets a call from Carter’s wife Virginia ( Beverly Todd ), demanding Edward take Carter home. He discusses the call with Carter, he decided he wants to continue.
Later the two take a safari in Tanzania, followed by climbing the Egyptian pyramids, then they go to Agra, India to go insdie the Taj Mahal and then to the Himalayan Mountains to climb Mt. Everest. Unfortunately a storm comes out of nowhere, making the climb impossible.
Dissapointed as they are, they take a brief trip to nearby Hong Kong. Afterwards, they decide to go home. Carter drives Edward through a neighborhood, stopping at Edward’s daughters house. Carter starts arguing with Carter, stating he knows his relationship with his daughter is dead. The two go their seperate ways from there.
Carter reunites with his family and has a large meal with all of them, looking happy to see them, but sad he’s no longer on an adventure. Later that night, Virginia finds Carter passed out.
Edward visits Carter at the hospital and forgives him. Knowing he will die soon, Carter gives him the bucket list, telling him to finish it. Edward goes to see his daughter, they make up and he gets to meet his granddaughter. Unfortunately, Carter dies. At the funeral, Edward gives a heartfelt speech about how Carter changed his life, the months he knew him were the best in his life. Edward later dies offscreen, his and Carter’s ashes being buried on Mt. Everest. The End.
The movie doesn’t focus on death even though it is talked about a lot. Giving the viewer a feeling it would just be two old guys having a blast around the world. There is some drama, but despite the serious sjbjects tackled in the film, it does a good job at remaining lighthearted and fun with good characters.
Overall this movie is mostly carried by the terrific perfomances by legendary actors; Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson. Without them and the chemistry the two had together, this could have been a garbage, b-list comedy that you would find on DVD in the discount isle at gas stations. Not to say nobody else could have played them, or the movie/story was otherwise bad. No-it’s just that the perfomances between the two are what made the film as good as it was. Overall, I’d give this film a 7.5/10
PS happy birthday to Bob Ross