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Review: Richard Linklater's 'Bernie' Starring Jack Black Is A Harmless, But Charming & Funny Effort

  • By Edward Davis
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  • April 26, 2012 3:01 PM
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  • 0 Comments
Employing a laid-back, jovial and amiable mien, Richard Linklater's latest effort, the East Texas-set black comedy "Bernie," is not unlike the Austin-based filmmaker himself: affable, eager to please without pandering, and highly likeable. In fact, "Bernie," starring Jack Black as an endearing mortician and well-loved member of his small-town community in Carthage, Texas, is so delightful, and rather wryly comical, it’s easy to be charmed with the picture despite its modest ambitions, small-scale aims and slight nature.

SXSW '12: Jack Black Talks 'Bernie' & Says He's Still Trying To "Crack The Code" On 'School Of Rock 2'

  • By Todd Gilchrist
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  • March 19, 2012 10:00 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Jack Black is a goof – at least when you watch him on screen: from “High Fidelity” to “School Of Rock” to “Kung Fu Panda” to “Tropic Thunder,” Black exudes a manic, febrile energy that is irresistibly funny, if not charming, even when he’s being mean or maybe a little bit obnoxious. But off camera, Black isn’t the kind of performer who seems to feel the need to maintain that silly sensibility, and he’s in fact quite mellow. All of which is why his turn in the new film “Bernie” is a such a refreshing and unique change of pace for Black; pitched at a tone between his level-11 comedy and off screen quietude, he delivers a fascinating, sympathetic performance as a genteel Texas funeral director who unexpectedly murders the wealthy widow he befriends after performing services for her late husband. Black scores a home run in the role, lending subtlety and real humanity to character whose odd combination of characteristics – all of which are evidently real – could have come off as cartoonish.

SXSW '12 Review: Richard Linklater's 'Bernie' Starring Jack Black Is A Harmless, But Charming & Funny Effort

  • By Edward Davis
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  • March 15, 2012 3:06 PM
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  • 0 Comments
Employing a laid-back, jovial and amiable mien, Richard Linklater's latest effort, the East Texas-set black comedy "Bernie," is not unlike the Austin-based filmmaker himself: affable, eager to please without pandering, and highly likeable. In fact, "Bernie," starring Jack Black as an endearing mortician and well-loved member of his small-town community in Carthage, Texas, is so delightful, and rather wryly comical, it’s easy to be charmed with the picture despite its modest ambitions, small-scale aims and slight nature.

14 New Images Of Richard Linklater's 'Bernie' Starring Jack Black, Matthew McConaughey & Shirley MacLaine

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • March 15, 2012 2:27 PM
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  • 0 Comments
What do you get when you mix Texan manners, a mortician, a murder, Jack Black, Matthew McConaughey and Shirley MacLaine into a comedic crime thriller? You get Richard Linklater's "Bernie," another fascinating stylistic detour from the filmmaker, marking his first feature film since 2008's "Orson Welles And Me."

SXSW '12: Jack Black Talks Musical Aspects Of 'Frank Or Francis' & Says Charlie Kaufman's Film Has "A Powerfully Surrealistic Tone"

  • By Todd Gilchrist
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  • March 15, 2012 10:05 AM
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  • 0 Comments
After high-profile roles in commercial fare such as “School Of Rock,” “Nacho Libre” and “The Big Year,” Jack Black has tapped into a series of smaller and more idiosyncratic opportunities, starting with Richard Linklater’s true-crime dramedy “Bernie.” But the comedian and actor has even bigger challenges on the horizon with “Frank Or Francis,” Charlie Kaufman’s follow-up to his 2008 film “Synecdoche, New York.” While appearing at the SXSW Film Festival for the local premiere of “Bernie,” Black revealed he didn’t know how soon shooting was set to begin, but he characterized the film to The Playlist as an incisive portrait of celebrity culture.

Watch: Trailer For Richard Linklater's 'Bernie' Starring Jack Black & Matthew McConaughey

  • By The Playlist
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  • February 29, 2012 9:29 PM
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  • 6 Comments
A Renaissance man, a community leader, and a mortician who strikes up an unlikely friendship with a wealthy widow that leads to fatal consequences: this is the premise to Richard Linklater's latest, a black comedy called "Bernie." Starring Jack Black, Matthew McConaughey and the great Shirley MacLaine, "Bernie" is Linklater's first feature-length effort since 2009's "Me & Orson Welles."

Watch: Jack Black Runs For Office In Stephen Malkmus And The Jicks Video For 'Senator'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 14, 2011 9:06 AM
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  • 0 Comments
As the 2012 presidential race is just getting heated up, who better than Jack Black and indie rock oldies the Stephen Malkmus And The Jicks to remind us that the candidates are generally much more raw (perhaps not this raw) than their public personas they spend so much time massaging.

Steve Carell, Jack Black & Nicolas Cage Sign On For Charlie Kaufman's 'Frank Or Francis'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • July 22, 2011 6:55 AM
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  • 2 Comments
Sorry Comic-Con (and the currently ongoing "Tintin" panel), you just got served. At least for now.

Would We Have Been Better Off With Robert Smigel's Version Of 'Green Lantern' Starring Jack Black?

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • June 20, 2011 8:13 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Hal Jordan Conjured Up Superman & 5 More Things You Need To Know About The Unmade Comedic ScriptBefore Ryan Reynolds put on the CGI suit as Hal Jordan in "Green Lantern," the franchise was eyeing a completely different direction. Way back in 2004 Robert Smigel -- best known for his TV Funhouse shorts on "Saturday Night Live" and the creator and voice of Triumph The Insult Comic Dog -- had penned a comedic take on the character that had Jack Black set to star. In that incarnation, Black would've played a reality TV star who gets chosen to wear the power ring with comedic results. Needless to says, fans weren't so hot on this idea and while that version never got off the ground, we've always wondered what his film would've been like. Well, thanks to Vanity Fair, now we know.

L.A. Film Fest Review: Richard Linklater's 'Bernie' Is A Good Man

  • By Leah Zak
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  • June 19, 2011 1:40 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Meet Bernie: a man who has truly found his place in this world as an assistant funeral director and beloved member of the community in the small Texas town of Carthage. Soft spoken with an arguably effeminate Southern accent, of a round stature but always with admirable posture, Bernie Tiede is a gentleman. And a murderer. But the town of Carthage would really just like you to know that he is a gentleman.

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