Oddball comedy drama Bernie is trying something different that's not quite working
00:42 GMT, 26 April 2013
12:25 GMT, 26 April 2013
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Verdict: Oddball comedy-drama
U.S. writer-director Richard Linklater has made a weird little biopic about a real-life, small-town mortician and murderer, well loved in his local community of Carthage, Texas.
The role is embraced by Jack Black, who is on good, if muted, form. He makes Bernie a well-intentioned, churchgoing innocent, cruelly exploited by the affluent widow (Shirley MacLaine) he was eventually accused of slaughtering.
The reason this is a curious film is that it’s interspersed by mockumentary footage of locals (played by actors but often quoting real witnesses) enthusing about Bernie. Little sympathy is extended towards his victim.
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Jack Black doesn't quite make it all the way as Bernie
One resident even comes out with the justification: ‘It’s not as bad as people say — he only shot her four times, not five.’
The story is too one-paced and monotonous to capture a big audience, and falls midway between comedy and drama, but Black gives his most nuanced performance in years.
I didn’t find it very entertaining, but it is at least trying something different.
User: Jack Black's Bernie takes advantage of lonely Shirley MacLaine's affluent widow
Weird biopic: Jack Black embraces role
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