Saturday, September 8, 2012

Film Review: Bernie

Main Lady opted for pizza and a movie last night.  Naturally I was the one who got elected to pick out the movie, which means that if I get something I'd like to watch she'll whine that it's too violent for her and go out into the other room and sulk.  If I get something I think she would like to watch, it's guaranteed to be so boring that I may well fall asleep.  Then there will be a discussion of the film later on during which I'll encourage her to talk and keep my own opinions to myself.  This is more difficult that you might think, given that I'm supposed to have watched the film and been as enthralled by it as she is.

Anyway, I lucked out and rented the film Bernie, and I'm here to tell you that if you haven't seen Bernie, go rent it and watch the entire thing - and do not skip the credits.  The credits are the best part.  Keep reading for the links and lowdown, without spoilers.

Bernie is half documentary, half 'based on true events' comedy.  Here are a couple links and the official synopsis:

Rotten Tomatoes - Bernie

IMDB - Bernie
In small-town Texas, the local mortician strikes up a friendship with a wealthy widow, though when he kills her, he goes to great lengths to create the illusion that she's alive.

Which is sort of true and sort of not.  Yes, those things happen but it's a lot like saying the film Titanic is about a shipwreck.  There is a whole lot more to the film than that.  What makes the film hilariously funny and interesting is this:
Real residents of Carthage, Texas who knew the real Bernie Tiede and Marjorie Nugent appear in the film providing commentary on the events.

These people are great, and I'd really like to drive out to Carthage, Texas just to meet a few of them.  They knew Bernie and Marjorie and they speak honestly and freely about both people on camera.  This is great stuff.
The owners of the Hawthorn Funeral Home in Carthage, Texas, where Bernie Tiede met Marjorie Nugent, refused to allow the film to use the name of the funeral home.
The owner of the funeral home also stated that when he hired Bernie, his business was already on the rise, but due to Bernie's suggestions and popularity around town his profit margin saw a substantial increase.

I'd recommend this film to anyone who needs a little cheering up or a good laugh.  You won't be sorry you rented it.


Unknown said...

Hey, I followed your advice and rented this movie through my Blockbuster @Home account, and it came in the mail yesterday. I also LOVED this movie, it was so quirky and funny. I was talking to a coworker at Dish about it, and I couldn’t stop going on about how great Jack Black’s performance was. A lot of people peg him as a one trick pony, but they just need to see this movie. I really love renting movies that I never even heard of while they were in theaters, but are really great! Thanks for suggesting it, I will to all of my friends.

Mad Jack said...

Glad you liked it, Chris.

Unknown said...

I just added this to my list of movies to watch and now that I've seen Chris' comment I am even more eager.