The Bucket List

Rated 3.0

Two terminally ill patients (Jack Nicholson, Morgan Freeman), virtual strangers, decide to spend their last months on a “bucket list”—i.e., all the things they want to do before they kick it. Justin Zackham’s gimmicky script is threadbare and platitudinous; there’s virtually no supporting cast (besides Sean Hayes as Nicholson’s assistant and Beverly Todd as Freeman’s wife, both too briefly), and only the stars’ familiar personae—Nicholson cantankerous, Freeman wise—to flesh out the two leads. The movie’s warmth is watery and banal, the humor false-hearty, and the whole thing seems like an excuse for the stars and director Rob Reiner to visit (or be digitally inserted into) a series of exotic locales. Reiner moves things along briskly, and if the movie leans heavily on its stars … well, wouldn’t you?