Bernie is an Upcoming comedic film directed by Richard Linklater, and written by Linklater and Skip Hollandsworth. The film stars Jack Black as Bernie Tiede, Shirley MacLaine as the elderly widow, Marjorie Nugent, and Matthew McConaughey as the local District Attorney. It made its world premiere as the opening night film of the 2011 Los Angeles Film Festival. The film’s distributor, Millennium Entertainment, plans to release the film on April 27, 2012.
Movie Review (Synopsis):
Local mortician Bernie Tiede (Black) befriends a rich widow (MacLaine) in a small Texas town. He murders Nugent after growing weary of her persistent nagging and non-stop put downs, but no one misses her for months until the local district attorney (McConaughey) begins to investigate. In the meantime, many citizens of the small, East Texas town of Carthage rally to the murderer’s defense, and demand that the authorities go easy on Tiede for the killing of the elderly Nugent. Watch online Bernie movie in Full HD/DVD/ipod/divX quality
Bernie is based on a 1998 Texas Monthly magazine article by Hollandsworth, “Midnight in the Garden of East Texas,” that chronicles the 1996 murder of 81-year-old millionaire Marjorie Nugent in Carthage, Texas by her 39-year-old homosexual companion, Bernhardt “Bernie” Tiede. Nugent was shot in the back four times with a rifle by Tiede, who confessed to the 1996 murder.
For a while, Bernie proves himself right. After a rough introduction, Marjorie and Bernie become “partners.” They do everything together. Like Bernie’s previous connections to widows, the nature of his relationship with Marjorie is unknown. What is known is how inseparable the two are, at least until their relationship takes a downward spiral. At some point, for whatever reason, Marjorie begins to run Bernie’s life, treating him like a child and torturing him in the littlest ways possible. One day, Bernie snaps and he kills Marjorie in a quick burst of violence.
Even with that dark turn of the events, there’s always a high level of empathy and care shown for the titular lead. Jack Black makes you love this murderer, and without ever feeling uncomfortable about it. There’s such a gentle charisma and warmness to Bernie. You laugh at his expressions and child-like worldview, but you laugh out of love for this good-hearted guy. The film tries to question whether all of Bernie’s motives are well-intentioned, but it’s hard to dismiss that the Bernie we see is an all-around great guy.
By the end, Bernie will raise discussion as to which side of the coin you agree with. Yes, the character committed murder, but he is clearly no menace to society. However, perhaps I wouldn’t think that if Bernie wasn’t such a charming and sweet character. Maybe if he was a creepy or awkward guy I would solely see him as a murderer, and not a great guy who did something bad. It’s a thought-provoking topic Bernie raises, and the film achieves that through plenty of laughs and heart.
The making of the film, based on an article in Texas Monthly magazine by Skip Hollandsworth, who also co-wrote the comedic film with Linklater, has divided many of the citizens of Carthage, Texas, the small town in East Texas where the Nugent murder occurred. In the film, Linklater includes interviews with several Carthage residents about their feelings of support for Bernie Tiede. Some citizens hope the film will stimulate an increase in tourism, while others have voiced anger that a comedy film was derived from the events surrounding the murder of an 81 year-old woman.
“The 2012 SXSW Film Festival hosted a total of 132 features, consisting of 74 World Premieres, 17 North American Premieres and 11 U.S. Premieres, with 58 films from first-time directors. 138 shorts will screen as part of 12 overall shorts programs. The nearly 275 films were selected from a record number of overall submissions, over 5,300, comprised of approximately 2,000 features and 3,300 shorts. This was a 7% increase over 2011 despite moving submission deadlines a month earlier than in previous years.”
I’ve seen a lot of movies so far, and I’m genuinely pleased to see both “Eden” and “Beware Of Mr. Baker” on the list of awards winners. I’ll have reviews of these as I continue the festival through Sunday. I’ll consider this a heads-up on what I may want to catch before the festival ends. Download movie Bernie movie in Full HD/DVD/ipod/divX quality
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