Dispatched from his basement room on an errand for his widowed mother, slacker Jeff might discover his destiny (finally) when he spends the day with his unhappily married brother as he tracks his possibly adulterous wife.
After a stint in a mental institution, former teacher Pat Solitano moves back in with his parents and tries to reconcile with his ex-wife. Things get more challenging when Pat meets Tiffany, a mysterious girl with problems of her own.
David O. Russell
Robert De Niro
Tim Lippe has no idea what he's in for when he's sent to Cedar Rapids, Iowa to represent his company at an annual insurance convention, where he soon finds himself under the "guidance" of three convention veterans.
Shy 14-year-old Duncan goes on summer vacation with his mother, her overbearing boyfriend, and her boyfriend's daughter. Having a rough time fitting in, Duncan finds an unexpected friend in Owen, manager of the Water Wizz water park.
The US President and UK Prime Minister fancy a war. But not everyone agrees that war is a good thing. The US General Miller doesn't think so and neither does the British Secretary of State ... See full summary »
We meet Bernie Tiede (1958- ), a chubby undertaker, who takes pride in his work. He's a Gospel-singing tenor. In a series of interviews with townspeople, mixed with flashbacks, we follow Bernie: he arrives in Carthage, Texas (pop. 7,000), where old ladies adore him; he befriends a wealthy, mean-spirited widow named Marjorie Nugent; they become companions in both daily routines and expensive vacations. Among those interviewed, only her stockbroker and Danny Buck, the local district attorney, are unsympathetic toward the sunny, sometimes saccharine Bernie. Marjorie changes from sour and alone to happy with Bernie; then she gets possessive. What will sweet Bernie do? Written by
When Bernie is driving up to Mrs. Nugent's home, there is a close-up of the Texas State Registration sticker on the front windshield of the car which clearly says "12, 11" indicating that the registration will expire in December of 2011. See more »
I'm very honored to introduce our guest lecturer today. He graduated from here about 15 years ago. He's gone on to a fabulous career. I can't think of a single person who's more qualified or more adept at the final procedures you've been studying lately. Now you've learned the science. Now's your chance to learn the art. Students, Mr. Bernie Tiede...
See more »
Before the main credits roll, photos of the real-life Bernie and Marjorie together are shown, along with a brief video of Bernie Teide talking with Jack Black. See more »
A dark comedy, "Bernie" is a mix of true crime and documentary. It's based on a true story and weaves a tale of a character both sympathetic and guilty, and supporting characters who are stubborn and compassionate. Grab your cowboy hats, belt buckles, and King James Bible because we are off to Carthage, Texas for a story about funerals, murder and homosexuality.
Bernie (Jack Black) is an odd sort of fellow. He's a mortician who sends off the deceased from small town Texas to Heaven in style. Little old ladies love him; he goes to church, donates his time and money and is liked by everybody. He's quiet, but sings sweetly, and appears to be happy just being himself. Larger-than-life comedians take note of Black's subdued, character-enlightening and hilarious performance.
Bernie meets wealthy widow Marjorie (Shirley MacLaine) and like with all little old ladies, he wants to make sure that she's properly cared for during this tough time. The difference is that this time she's trying to keep distance from his flirtations rather than the other way around. She's not nice, and the other residents are pretty sure there is only word that suitably describes her. She has one son and four grandkids; some of whom have attempted to sue her, and the others have actually sued her.
Bernie and Marjorie have a need for each other; money, companionship, and who knows what else. Their relationship is simultaneously unclear and creepy. This is where the plot develops. Bernie is up to something and the townsfolk are either going to stand by their man or paint him as a criminal (or homosexual, because in Carthage, Texas they're pretty much one in the same). Bernie's main adversary is District Attorney Danny Buck (Matthew McConaughey). He's sure that Bernie is gay and he's also sure that Bernie is up to no good and will pay for whatever crime he has committed. McConaughey was extremely funny and was able to play into his Texas background but was completely different from anything he has done before. There's something special about an actor who can follow up the success of "Magic Mike" (2012) with something like this.
Linklater has followed this true story to the letter, even using real town residents to introduce us to the character of Bernie. His genius comes through in the writing. The dialogue is unbelievably funny and he uses people's need to laugh rather than their commitment to empathy to get us to connect to this film. Considering how funny and enjoyable the rest of "Bernie" was, the ending seemed out of place. Upon further reflection, it was exactly the kind of jolt back to reality that was needed.
7 of 10 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?