The best little murderer in Texas 

With Bernie, Richard Linklater turns to his home state for comic inspiration for the first time since Dazed and Confused

Jack Black does more good than harm as the title character of Bernie

Jack Black does more good than harm as the title character of Bernie

Courtesy Millennium Entertainment

Richard Linklater messes with Texas again, seeking comic inspiration from his home state for the first time since Dazed and Confused (1993). His source material here is a Texas Monthly article about the 1996 murder of a wealthy 81-year-old widow, Marjorie Nugent, by her 39-year-old gay companion, Bernhardt Tiede, in small-town Carthage. The story provides great roles for Jack Black as the sunny title character, Shirley MacLaine as his dyspeptic victim, and Matthew McConaughey as the good-old-boy D.A. who prosecutes the crime. But some of the best performances come from real-life residents of Carthage as they share their recollections on camera. Their testimony contributes to a rich sense of small-town society at its most congenial and corrupt—Bernie, who spends months throwing the dead woman's money around, is so popular with the townspeople that the D.A. is forced to seek a change of venue.

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Film Details

  • Bernie

    Bernie

    • Rated PG-13 - Crime drama, Dark comedy

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