June 25, 2008
A geriatric buddy pic. A senior's road flic.
Two incompatible septuagenarians face the twilight of terminal cancer as hospital roommates. Before departing for the ever-after, they agree to embrace the here-and-now.
Making a list of things they didn't do, the two AWOL patients embark on a whirlwind worldwide pilgrimage to fill in the gaps of their lives. In so doing, they inadvertently grow up.
Playing themselves, curmudgeon Jack Nicholson (as callous billionaire Edward Cole) and classy Morgan Freeman (as savvy auto mechanic Carter Chambers) trek earth and sky before ending up happier at home.
Jack has made successful movies tussling with maturity (Something's Gotta Give, As Good as It Gets) and Morgan has made his share of buddy movies (Shawshank Redemption, An Unfinished Life), so they're not trailblazing new terrain, but they do charmingly recycle their perennial popular movie personas.
If you are not expecting a penetrating journey about kicking the bucket, then grab a hanky and join Director Rob Reiner as your grin ferryman on the River Styx.
It should not diminish the cinematic experience to know that Morgan and Jack skydived from dizzying altitudes, raced Shelby Mustangs, jetted over the Arctic Circle, ate caviar in France, beheld the Egyptian pyramids, strolled through the Taj Mahal and biked the Great Wall of China - all without leaving a studio in Burbank. But it did.
You learn even more movie poop from the Trivia Track, a viewing of the film with inset post-it notes tacked to the screening images.
Rob Reiner's post-production love-fest interviews with Nicholson and Freeman are a curious study of contrasts.
Thirty-something Justin Zackham spoke about assembling his own list and collecting lists from celebs as the catalyst for writing his script. Now off his personal bucket list, he says happily, is "Get a movie made in a major studio."
Studio: Warner Brothers
Director: Rob Reiner
Cast: Jack Nicholson, Morgan Freeman, Sean Hayes, Beverly Todd,
Length: 115 minutes
Video resolution: 1080p
Aspect ratio: 1:85:1
Dolby Digital 5.1
Dolby Digital Stereo
Dolby Digital Stereo
English SDH, French, Spanish