Sunday, November 25, 2012

"Bernie", entertaining film

As often happens, the only way this film came to our attention was through Netflix.  With leads Jack Black and Shirley McLaine, a seemingly unusual combination to start with, the film is offbeat and full of low key laughs from start to finish.  That's my take, but some may not find as much humor, don't know why that would be the case but everyone's different.

Based on a true events, the film is about a mortician who is a model citizen, more that a model citizen, in Carthage, Texas.  He becomes involved with the town's richest widow, a dour and dominating person, and benefits from the odd seemingly chaste relationship, buying airplanes and accompanying her on world travels, first class.  At the same time he continues to be a pillar of the community in every respect. 

In an out of character moment, he shoots and kills the widow, puts her in a freezer, and continues on as if life is normal.  His ruse is discovered and he goes to trial.  This is not a spoiler really, since it is on the cover of the Netflix package and in every review.  The beauty of this film is in the way it unfolds and in the acting of Jack Black. 

A completely wonderful aspect of this film is that it uses at least 20 local residents of the small east Texas town of Carthage to make mock documentary comments about the trial and their beloved leading citizen.  Maybe it is "mock documentary" in a sense, but one feels that they are in fact talking about the real situation.  Those Texas voices and expressions take the film over the top.  What a great idea.

Find this film and watch it. 


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