A 30 year old orphan finds his life's official version hard to swallow. His parents couldn't possibly have abandoned him in a trash can as a baby. No, they were victims of a mafia plot and today, if they're still alive, they need his help.


Albert Dupontel


Albert Dupontel (dialogue), Albert Dupontel (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
1 nomination. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Claude Perron ... Marion
Albert Dupontel ... Bernie Noël
Roland Blanche Roland Blanche ... Donald Willis
Hélène Vincent ... Mme Clermont, la mère de Bernie
Roland Bertin Roland Bertin ... Ramonda
Paul Le Person ... Bernie, the janitor
Catherine Samie ... Grandmother
Alain Libolt Alain Libolt ... Maître Clermont
Pascal Ternisien Pascal Ternisien ... Edouard Clermont
Emmanuelle Bougerol Emmanuelle Bougerol ... Marie-Solange Clermont
Philippe Uchan ... Député Vallois
Antoinette Moya Antoinette Moya ... L'agent immobilier
Michel Vuillermoz Michel Vuillermoz ... Travesti
Loïc Houdré Loïc Houdré ... Dealer
Yves Pignot Yves Pignot ... Directeur de l'orphelinat


Bernie, a 30 years old orphan, decides to leave his orphanage and find his parents. After an investigation, he meets Marion, a young heroin addict and falls in love with her. He believes that his family was victim of a plot and this is why they deserted him. Written by Tetsuo Aminata

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Drama


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Did You Know?


Bernie Noël: My name is Bernie Noël and I like hyenas, because hyena it is... it is an animal about which we never speak,while it is an animal who can be,... who can be very important.
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Spoofed in Boys on the Beach (1999) See more »


La Bas
Noir Desir
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User Reviews

Shovel violence is funny stuff.
6 September 2008 | by ElijahCSkuggsSee all my reviews

French cinema is a weird thing. And this is a movie that fully gives that weird french vibe that you may or may not be looking for. I search it out like a fox, so I'm glad I got to see Bernie.

The story of a slightly retarded man, who is now venturing out of the orphanage which he's called home for his entire life. With money he's saved up and a quest to find his parents....he's pretty much on a collision course with disaster. And that's just your impression. Bernie eventually does meet his parents and things quickly get out of control. Seriously out of control.

Bernie is a bizarre film. It has loads of dark humor, with a really interesting and kinda realistic idea. I know of a couple handicapped guys who've gone out to live on their own. But those dudes weren't as "out there" as our pal, Bernie. Wreckless driving, extreme violence are two things Bernie brings to the outside world with him. Which is humorous, but at the same time, questionable. Basic life lessons are to have good morals, and a major one is to be kind. Ya know, violence is a bad thing. I guess he just never learned that. Or I missed something.

Nevertheless, Bernie is a one-of-a-kind flick that some people have said is even better than Pulp Fiction.....not sure where that relation comes from. Were they made the same year? Anyways, it is a strong film like PFiction, and it's pretty entertaining, but it also feels like it's trying too hard in a way. Also I didn't really care for the characters, even Bernie. I would have loved to actually care for Bernie on an emotional level, but alas, I didn't. But for anyone who enjoys dark comedy, Bernie should be on your to-see list.

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Release Date:

27 November 1996 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Bernie See more »

Filming Locations:

Paris, France See more »


Box Office


FRF14,000,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital


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