6.8/10
54,807
152 user 236 critic

Bernie (2011)

Trailer
2:08 | Trailer
In small-town Texas, an affable mortician strikes up a friendship with a wealthy widow, though when she starts to become controlling, he goes to great lengths to separate himself from her grasp.

Director:

Richard Linklater

Writers:

Skip Hollandsworth (based on the article in Texas Monthly by), Richard Linklater (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 10 wins & 18 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

In 1937, a teenager is cast in the Mercury Theatre production of "Julius Caesar", directed by a young Orson Welles.

Director: Richard Linklater
Stars: Zac Efron, Claire Danes, Christian McKay
Comedy | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

After being kicked out of his rock band, Dewey Finn becomes a substitute teacher of an uptight elementary private school, only to try and turn them into a rock band.

Director: Richard Linklater
Stars: Jack Black, Mike White, Joan Cusack
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

In 1980, a group of college baseball players navigate their way through the freedoms and responsibilities of unsupervised adulthood.

Director: Richard Linklater
Stars: Blake Jenner, Tyler Hoechlin, Ryan Guzman
Slacker (1990)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A day in the life of Austin, Texas as the camera roams from place to place and provides a brief look at the overeducated, the social misfits, the outcasts and the oddballs.

Director: Richard Linklater
Stars: Richard Linklater, Rudy Basquez, Jean Caffeine
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

The story of the Newton gang, the most successful bank robbers in history, owing to their good planning and minimal violence.

Director: Richard Linklater
Stars: Matthew McConaughey, Ethan Hawke, Skeet Ulrich
Animation | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

An undercover cop in a not-too-distant future becomes involved with a dangerous new drug and begins to lose his own identity as a result.

Director: Richard Linklater
Stars: Keanu Reeves, Winona Ryder, Robert Downey Jr.
Tape (2001)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Three old high school friends meet in a Michigan motel room to dissect painful memories from their past.

Director: Richard Linklater
Stars: Ethan Hawke, Robert Sean Leonard, Uma Thurman
Comedy | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Thirty years after they served together in Vietnam, a former Navy Corpsman Larry "Doc" Shepherd re-unites with his old buddies, former Marines Sal Nealon and Reverend Richard Mueller, to bury his son, a young Marine killed in the Iraq War.

Director: Richard Linklater
Stars: Bryan Cranston, Laurence Fishburne, Steve Carell
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

The adventures of high school and junior high students on the last day of school in May 1976.

Director: Richard Linklater
Stars: Jason London, Wiley Wiggins, Matthew McConaughey
Killer Joe (2011)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

When a debt puts a young man's life in danger, he turns to putting a hit out on his evil mother in order to collect the insurance.

Director: William Friedkin
Stars: Matthew McConaughey, Emile Hirsch, Juno Temple
Biography | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Local Pennsylvania polka legend Jan Lewan develops a plan to get rich that shocks his fans and lands him in jail.

Director: Maya Forbes
Stars: Jack Black, Jenny Slate, Jason Schwartzman
Mud (2012)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Two young boys encounter a fugitive and form a pact to help him evade the vigilantes that are on his trail and to reunite him with his true love.

Director: Jeff Nichols
Stars: Matthew McConaughey, Tye Sheridan, Jacob Lofland
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jack Black ... Bernie Tiede
Shirley MacLaine ... Marjorie Nugent
Matthew McConaughey ... Danny Buck
Brady Coleman ... Scrappy Holmes
Richard Robichaux ... Lloyd Hornbuckle
Rick Dial Rick Dial ... Don Leggett
Brandon Smith ... Sheriff Huckabee
Larry Jack Dotson ... Rev. Woodard
Merrilee McCommas Merrilee McCommas ... Molly
Mathew Greer Mathew Greer ... Carl (as Matthew Greer)
Marjorie Dome Marjorie Dome ... Townsperson
Tim Cariker Tim Cariker ... Townsperson
Fern Luker Fern Luker ... Townsperson
Jack Payne Jack Payne ... Townsperson
Sonny Carl Davis ... Townsperson (as Sonny Davis)
Edit

Storyline

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 <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A story so unbelievable it must be true.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some violent images and brief strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 June 2012 (Iceland) See more »

Also Known As:

Bernie See more »

Filming Locations:

Lockhart, Texas, USA See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$5,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$85,805, 29 April 2012

Gross USA:

$9,206,470

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$10,173,061
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Real residents of Carthage, Texas who knew the real Bernie Tiede and Marjorie Nugent appear in the film providing commentary on the events. See more »

Goofs

(at around 1 min) When Bernie is on the phone with Lloyd, there's an Apple Macbook Pro (Second Generation) in front of him. The Second Generation Macbook Pro didn't come out until late 2008 and the murder took place in 1998. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Professor Fleming: 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 »

Crazy Credits

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 »

Connections

Referenced in 70th Golden Globe Awards (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Just As I Am
Written by Charlotte Elliott and William B. Bradbury (as Wm B. Bradbury)
Performed by Jack Black
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
All about Texas, via a stunning Jack Black performance
26 February 2013 | by secondtakeSee all my reviews

Bernie (2011)

Don't you hate it when you see a funny movie and think at the end, wow, that could have been so much funnier? This movie really is funny, and Jack Black is kind of brilliant at being this man who has incredible generosity and a quirky kind of social skill to be everyone's favorite. And who ends up taking care of the richest woman in town, getting his name on her will, and so on, as you can guess.

To get the gags and to give a sense of documentary reality, clips of interviews with colorful townsfolk of all types are shown, and they are some of the funniest moments. When these same people are shown again and again there is a sense of welcome familiarity--an update on things from a known face--but also a sameness to the movie. It falls into a pattern. And it's a major part of the movie, with thirty of these talking heads, so naturally the momentum of the main plot is slowed down often. As the events become more extreme, the movie does not. It plods along, relying on some great idiosyncratic acting and the weird (and exaggerated?) East Texas culture.

But Black inhabits his character so well it's scary. The other big name (the biggest name) is Shirley MacLaine, who doesn't actually have that much to do (most of the time she is silent, just ominous or dour). And she of course doesn't make it through the whole film (the trailer and teaser give away too much on that score). The third name is Matthew McConaughey, and he's predictably fun and funny, though he blends in with lots of other unknown characters who are also fun and funny.

So it's the scenario, and some funny writing, that carries the day. Well done stuff. Director and writer Richard Linklater is a curious talent, a little all over the map but good at several things, including just being offbeat enough to seem like the Indie director he once was. His pair of movies "Before Sunrise" and "Before Sunset" are growing into unlikely classics (I like them both a lot) and yet he is also known for lesser comedies like "Dazed and Confused" and now this one.

Yeah, see this for some good laughs. The beginning will seem a little like a lame "Six Feet Under" episode, but stick with it. Black's character is utterly convincing, and funny. A good time.


21 of 23 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 152 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed