Year of Release: 2011
Director: Richard Linklater
Stars: Jack Black, Shirley MacLaine, Matthew McConaughey, Brandon Smith, Rick Dial, Richard Robichaux, Larry Jack Dotson, Brady Coleman
Genre: Comedy, Drama, Crime
Score out of ten (whole numbers only): 8
Richard Linklater successfully captures the mood and the tone of a small town in Texas. His film is built very much like a documentary, that captures the impressions of real inhabitants of the small town, but also showcases how Bernie was seen and perceived by everyone else. The film is filled with great humor, and most of it rests on the fantastic performance of Jack Black, who captures the character of Bernie Tiede perfectly. He humanizes the character, without making it a cliche or a stereotype. Matthew McConaughey also surprises as Danny Buck, whereas Shirley MacLaine has little to do as Marjorie Nugent. This is a great film where all the parts are so nicely put together, from the overall tone, to the performances, including also the cinematography of Dick Pope. Worth watching.