It was about 5 years ago after watching the episode of The Simpsons where Homer eats the blowfish and thinks he's going to die that I wrote my own list of things to do before I die (it also included skydiving and the like). A couple of years later still, I thought about writing a film about a young man who has to acheive all these things due to his imminent death. I didn't end up writing the film because, ironically, I wasted too much of my life. And now its too late... Or is it?
For here comes the tale of two elderly men who meet in hospital and become friends. One is rich and lonely (Jack Nicholson), one has never been well off yet is surrounded by loved ones (Morgan Freeman). The only thing they have in common is that they both have less than a year to live. United by this fairly grim news they decide to go out with a bang using the billionaires money to finance the holiday of a lifetime. Seeing everything they wanted to see. Doing everything they wanted to do.
In the hands of lesser talent this mawkish and sentimental film could have been unbelievably mawkish and ridiculously sentimental. Thanks to Jackie boy and The Reliable Mr.Freeman the mawk and the sentiment don't make the film unwatchable. Instead you enjoy spending an hour and a half in their company as they discuss all matters of life and death.
The story doesn't exactly keep you guessing and the effects as the pair globe hop are at times atrocious. It looks like they've been photoshopped into some scenes by a 6 year old whose just learnt to use adobe. At the end of the day you're paying for an uplifting film about what people do before they shuffle off this mortal coil and it does the job reasonably well. Now if you wait a couple of years for me to take my finger out of my arse you'll get to see my version. Thats if you don't kick the bucket first.