Bucket List: The Good, the Bad and the Rest

Everyone has a bucket list, a list of “Things to do Before I Die” filled with exciting things and one’s deepest desires. But what if you die before completing it? What if your Bucket List is now all your family has left of your soul? The Marathi movie “Bucket List” is based on this beautiful concept. It’s about a woman from a typically traditional big Marathi family finally finding herself and learning to live her life on her own terms.

Madhura Sane is a 40-year-old woman with a heart problem. The movie starts with an operation in which her heart is replaced with a donor’s heart and shows her adjusting to her family and life as a wife, a mother and a daughter-in-law after the operation. But she’s plagued by a wish to know who her donor was, and wishes to meet their family to express her thanks. When she realises that it was a 20-year-old girl Sai Deshpande, she visits her family and eventually learns of the girl’s bucket list of “Things to do before she turned 21”. Out of a sense of gratitude, Madhura decides to complete Sai’s bucket list before her 21st birthday.

It was a cute movie, with Madhuri Dixit stealing the show as the 40-year-old Madhura Sane in her debut role in Marathi cinema. The supporting actors playing her husband and family members, too, have done a commendable job, playing their part as a stereotypical patriarchal family to a T. The movie was completely focused on her and her quest to find herself, however, and this made some parts of it seem quite abrupt and disconnected. The actors who play Sai’s friends, and Madhura’s one close friend, however, were not that good. The overacting could have been toned down by more than a little, but since this movie was centred around only Madhuri Dixit, maybe it doesn’t matter too much.

The idea behind the movie was wonderful, but the script is lacking in many places. The husband can’t seem to decide whether to be caring or chauvinistic, and is shown alternating between two roles, almost seeming bipolar. Also, as I mentioned before, a lot of scenes seem disconnected or just don’t fit in with the rest of the movie. In other words, the movie didn’t quite “flow” as it was supposed to. I would have also loved it if the film had explored the character of Sai’s twin a bit more. He makes an about-turn from hating Madhura’s guts and being completely against the completion of the bucket list, to being her strongest advocate like the flip of a switch.

Another thing I really disliked about this movie is the character development, or the lack thereof. The film is focused on Madhuri Dixit, sure, but it wouldn’t have hurt to give at least some depth to characters other than hers. In fact, her own character seemed to lack depth until the very end. She may have been the main character, but there were other characters who deserved at least a bit of the stage, including her husband and Sai’s twin. Throughout the movie, we just see fleeting glimpses of who all the characters really are, when in the 2 hours of the movie, they really could have done better.

That said, it wasn’t a bad movie per se. It just had the potential to be better. It wasn’t boring, though it had its cheesy moments, and there were bits in which I felt it was dragging on forever, so I’ll give it 3 stars out of 5. If you’re looking for a sweet movie to watch with your family, you should definitely watch this one.

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