Bernie - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Bernie Reviews

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Ed Whitfield
The Ooh Tray
October 20, 2011
Linklater has used witnesses to the truth to tell a lie.
David Ehrlich
Boxoffice Magazine
March 27, 2012
Bernie is poised to be a tough sell for Millennium Entertainment, its mild star power likely incapable of offsetting a garish premise and mixed reviews.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
Christopher Lloyd
Sarasota Herald-Tribune
January 14, 2013
| Original Score: 2.5/4
Tim Grierson
Screen International
June 17, 2011
Amusing and appealing, but only rarely cuts deep enough in its examination of a kindly small-town Texan who murdered the elderly widow he took care of.
Bill Weber
Slant Magazine
April 25, 2012
A surprisingly shapeless true-crime farce which never creates a convincing context for the odd relationship between a pious East Texas mortician and his sugar mama.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
Top Critic
Adam Markovitz
Entertainment Weekly
April 25, 2012
All those twangy, homespun observations interrupt and annotate the narrative until Black and MacLaine's scenes start to feel as trivial as reenactments on a true-crime TV show.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Top Critic
Bruce Demara
Toronto Star
May 17, 2012
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 | Original Score: 2/4
Sean Burns
Philadelphia Weekly
May 3, 2015
Actual scenes with Black, MacLaine and McConaughey start to feel like over-acted interruptions to the documentary we'd rather be watching.
Antonia Quirke
Financial Times
April 25, 2013
Almost vaudeville in spirit, it delights in American social clichés and kinks.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Dustin Putman
TheFilmFile.com
April 26, 2012
For a motion picture about one person losing her life and another losing his freedom, "Bernie" doesn't deserve to be as flippant as it ultimately is.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Stella Papamichael
Digital Spy
April 22, 2013
You may be amused, but the laughter like the man, rings hollow.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
Mary F. Pols
TIME Magazine
April 25, 2012
You would be hard pressed to find a film that feels more true to a reporter's experience of an event. This isn't necessarily a good thing, at least not cinematically.
Stephanie Zacharek
Movieline
April 26, 2012
Bernie, like its lead character, has a degree of diffuse, aw-shucks charm, but it's also maddeningly opaque.
Full Review | Original Score: 6/10
Norman Wilner
NOW Toronto
May 18, 2012
It probably sounded great in the pitch room, but as an actual experience it's on the redundant side.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Christopher Tookey
Daily Mail (UK)
April 25, 2013
I didn't find it very entertaining, but it is at least trying something different.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Kelly Smyth
Sky Movies
April 24, 2013
There's not many movies that leave you wanting to give a convicted killer a great big hug. But this is one.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Lauren Carroll Harris
Concrete Playground
February 28, 2013
Black curbs his most irritating tendencies to give an endearing and convincing performance. An affectionate, intelligent ode to the oddity of small-town America.
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
Adam Ross
The Aristocrat
September 27, 2012
... Bernie is an unusual film with charm to spare, but it also happens to be laugh out loud funny, enthralling, profoundly sad and ultimately one of the year's best films.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
Matthew Odam
Austin American-Statesman
January 8, 2013
Bernie delivers an abundance of belly laughs, but at its center is a confounding act committed by a man too beloved to be hated and a community too passionate to think clearly.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
August 25, 2012
Black is -- forgive me -- downright adorable as the behind-bars-for-life killer.
Full Review | Original Score: B
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