In this black comedy inspired by real-life events, affable Texas mortician Bernie befriends the small town's wealthiest widow and then kills her. But despite the suspicious nature of her death, no one wants to think anything but the best of Bernie.
HD Available
Netflix Rating: 3.6
Rotten Tomatoes: Fresh 92%
Critics' score: 92   Audience score: 74   Rotten Tomatoes page
Top Rotten Tomatoes Critics

Jack Black, in the greatest performance of his career, makes us see what the people of Carthage, Texas, saw in Bernie Tiede... full review

Roger Moore, McClatchy-Tribune News Service

"Bernie' isn't a monumental film, but it is a finely tuned character study with some nice innovations. full review

Tom Long, Detroit News

The question of why the law must always be upheld, regardless of consequences, gives this light, amiable movie a surprising heft and weight. full review

Rene Rodriguez, Miami Herald

Bernie has chuckles, but it's hardly riotous. And this is a good thing. full review

Lisa Kennedy, Denver Post

Propelled by a perfectly cast trio of stars whose eccentricities shine in singular character roles, Bernie is charmer. full review

Jennie Punter, Globe and Mail

"Bernie" unfolds into many equally rich narrative strands: love story, southern Gothic slice-of-life and, finally tragedy and legal thriller... full review

Ann Hornaday, Washington Post

Linklater's a glider, not a pile-driver; he hangs back when other directors prefer to bore in. full review

Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune

It allows director Richard Linklater to explore his own roots while telling a remarkable real-life story, something too crazy for anyone to make up. full review

Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle

The movie's bright and endearing and surprisingly lacking in a point. I wish I liked it better, but it's a start. full review

Ty Burr, Boston Globe

A one-of-a-kind comedy based on the real homicide of an innocent old lady. full review

Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune

[A] weirdly funny, inspiring film. full review

Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer

Some of the best performances come from real-life residents of Carthage as they share their recollections on camera. full review

J. R. Jones, Chicago Reader

A dead-solid-perfect depiction of small-town life. full review

Bill Goodykoontz, Arizona Republic

Bernie isn't a particularly likeable guy and Black's opaque performance never lets us get beneath the surface to find a character we might actually care about. full review

Bruce Demara, Toronto Star

Linklater, admirably unconcerned about how his film can be categorized, has made a comedy, a drama and most certainly a character study. full review

John Anderson, Newsday

Watching Bernie is a little like sitting on a shady front porch and gossiping with the town tattlers. full review

Chris Vognar, Dallas Morning News

I had to forget what I knew about Black. He creates this character out of thin air, it's like nothing he's done before, and it proves that an actor can be a miraculous thing in the right role. full review

Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times

Has a little bit of an East Texas Fargo feel. Jack Black gives one of his best performances. full review

Richard Roeper, Richard

A jovial yet gracefully told tale. full review

Richard Brody, New Yorker

The wonder of Black's performance here is its empathy and balance: inasmuch as he can disappear into any role, he dissolves into this one with no hint of mocking remove. It's a beautiful thing to see. full review

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