The 7 Best Performances Richard Linklater Has Ever Directed — IndieWire Critics Survey

Every week, IndieWire asks a select handful of film critics two questions and publishes the results on Monday.

Richard Linklater’s “Where’d You Go, Bernadette” came (and went) last weekend, and while critics were mixed on the movie, few could deny the joy of Cate Blanchett’s lead performance. Across his long and eccentric career, Linklater has always been able to inspire the best from his cast.

This week’s question: What is the best performance in a Richard Linklater movie?

Jack Black (“Bernie”)

Joel Mayward (@joelmayward) Cinemayward.com

Though the “Before” films are my all-time favorite trilogy, with Delpy and Hawke giving some of the most raw and complex performances of their careers, I want to celebrate the under-appreciated wonder that is Jack Black as mortician-turned-murderer Bernie Tiede in “Bernie.” It’s the perfect role for emphasizing Black’s strengths and none of his weaknesses as he imbues Bernie with an energetic earnestness.
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