Monday, January 21, 2008

The Bucket List

Last night, Kyndall & I went with Len & Connie to see The Bucket List. It was between the baby boomer-targeted Bucket List and Coverfield, J.J. Abrams' (MI3, Lost, & Alias) answer to Godzilla. Cloverfield lost (in no small part to its hand camera filming style).

Old Hollywood stars are still making movies. Die Hard, Rocky (and Rambo), and the forthcoming Indiana Jones show Hollywood squeezing films from their diminishing star pool. Plus, movies like The Bucket List show more and more screenplays shifting to suit older actors and target older audiences.

The Bucket List has little redeeming value. The cast's acting skills rescue a script which cowers to small ideas and simple plot devices. Although it has a few poignant moments, the movie is embarrassingly predictable and (I hate to say it) boring. Neither character is believable, and that bad beginning unwinds most of the movie.

The theological and philosophical (if you distinguish those) elements loosely indoctrinate the audience to two false beliefs (Buddhism and Egyptian mythology) wrapped in a warm Christian guise. It was disconcerting. The tenants were shallow, the conclusions false, and that made the movie disappointing.

I did enjoy watching the movie. The characters were granted the opportunity to die (and, in part, live) how they wanted - we should be so lucky. Still, very little was granted to the meaning of life and, blatantly missing, the meaning of death. There was just too much linking material accomplishment with happiness.

I say, rent it. This movie is definitely not for kids as it vividly depicts cancer therapy and the side effects. If you suffer from cancer, you might skip it, too. It depicts cancer with far more grace than it actually has, and (similar to PS: I Love You) it places an expectation on the dying that will probably elicit more guilt than pleasure.

The biggest travesty here is the current dearth of choices at the theater.

No comments: