Thursday, 24 January 2013

Bernie Blu Ray Review

Bernie: Blu Ray Review

Rating: M
Released by Madman Home Entertainment

Jack Black reteams with Richard Linklater in this latest film, a tale that loudly proclaims "What you're fixing to see is a true story."

Set in small town Texas, Black stars as the slightly effeminate Bernie Tiede, a local mortician and all round good guy - the kind of guy who'll go the extra mile to ensure the widows are all happy after the event by delivering flowers, hugs and the personal touch.

Plus, his dedication to his community sees him delivering everything they need - and more thanks to an over generous personality.

But when Bernie befriends the nastiest  (and latest) widow in town Marjorie (played with relish by Shirley MacLaine), the friendship pushes Bernie over the edge and he commits murder.

Jack Black impresses mightily in this straight role, finally showing some depth of performance which has hitherto evaded his career. His subtle dialled-down performance (as opposed to the usual OTT he brings) means his character feels multi dimensional and real;  MacLaine, by contrast, is monstrous, imbuing her widow with spite and nastiness. McConaughey spins out another lawman, taking on the role of a district attorney with a determination to catch whoever killed Marjorie.

Bernie's an odd film - Linklater uses plenty of talking head interviews from locals in the small town of Carthage to get into the mentality of what actually went on. Plus, the fact it's based on a true story adds a frisson of something deliciously different.

Bernie is charming and memorably warm - a subtly blended mix of small town ideology and dark comedy.

Extras: True story feature, Amazing Grace performance by Jack Black, Featurette on real life people, deleted scenes, trailer.


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