The Bucket List

The story making the rounds (perhaps apocryphal, but within circles that should know) is that the screenplay for The Bucket List is the result of a scribe’s frustration after committing a decade to writing scripts he thought would matter, to no avail. With one last attempt before throwing in the towel and getting a real estate license, he resorted to flat-out pandering, crafting the type of screenplay he assumed that the Suits would eat up. They ate it up. With that in mind, there’s a certain entertainment factor to be found while viewing The Bucket List. But that’s about it. Here, Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson play the roles that are expected of them, albeit as themselves pretending to be a middle-class mechanic and a jaded rich dude who find themselves thrown together in a cancer ward. As these things go, they set out on Jack’s dime to empty the eponymous bucket list before they each kick it. It’s mawkish, sporadically amusing and admittedly well-crafted by director Rob Reiner, but exactly what you think it’ll be.