Reviews of Movies, TV shows & metro Detroit Restaurants

Short movie & TV show reviews and metro Detroit restaurant reviews

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Movie Review: "Bernie" (2011)

I watched the movie "Bernie" and I definitely liked it. Similar to my last reviewed movie ("Arbitrage"), this movie had a great performance by an actor and in this case it was Jack Black.

"Bernie" is a bit of a quirky movie and is definitely a dark comedy. It is actually based on a true story. Bernie Tiede (played by Black) is loved in the town of Carthage, Texas. Not only does everybody love him, he has an amazing talent...creating the most beautiful, heartfelt funerals anyone has ever seen. Bernie always helped the widows of the town even after the funeral commenced. One such widow was Marjorie Nugent (played by Shirley MacLaine). To put it mildly though...Marjorie is a cold bitch. But eventually, Bernie & Marjorie become inseparable. However, even the mild-mannered pleasant Bernie can't take it any more so...he takes matters into his own hands. This is where the story gets really good given how he manages the next few months. The best part is how the town reacts to his actions.

"Bernie" weaves this dark comedic story very well. Richard Linklater (of "Dazed & Confused" fame) does a wonderful job of directing this journey and allowing his star to portray Tiede with the necessary quirkiness this character needs. This is definitely a unique movie. Part of its uniqueness is how it uses interviews of actual Carthage residents to tell this tale. These small-town people recount this story in a very real way.

Black completely transforms himself into Tiede and he truly carries this film. He gives a very convincing, endearing performance. MacLaine also perfectly portrays the bitchy widow Marjorie Nugent. And Matthew McConaughey's portrayal as prosecuting attorney Danny Buck is spot on.

There are times where you feel that this story is just way to crazy, eccentric and funny to be true. But it is.

"Bernie" is a very entertaining, funny, well-made movie...7.5/10 stars

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