Weekend at Bernie’s (1989)

Weekend at Bernie's (1989)

Taglines: Two morons. One corpse. And the plot thickens…

Two young men are trying to make their way in a corporation. One on charm, the other on hard work. When they go to the president (Bernie) with a serious financial error on a printout, he pretends to be thrilled and invites them to his beach house for the weekend. He actually plans on having them killed. Bernie is also fooling around with the girlfriend of his mafia partner. When the partner has Bernie killed, the boys end up having to pretend Bernie is still alive as the frustrated hit man tries time and time again to complete the job.

Weekend at Bernie’s is a 1989 American black comedy film written by Robert Klane and directed by Ted Kotcheff. The film stars Andrew McCarthy and Jonathan Silverman as young insurance corporation employees who discover their boss, Bernie, dead. While attempting to convince people that Bernie is still alive, they discover that Bernie had ordered their deaths to cover up his embezzlement.

Weekend at Bernie's (1989)

About the Story

Larry Wilson (Andrew McCarthy) and Richard Parker (Jonathan Silverman) are two low-level financial employees at an insurance corporation in New York City. While going over actuarial reports, Richard discovers a series of payments made for the same death. Richard and Larry take their findings to the CEO, Bernie Lomax (Terry Kiser), who commends them for discovering insurance fraud and invites them to his Hamptons island beach house for the Labor Day weekend.

Unbeknownst to Larry and Richard, Bernie is behind the fraud. Nervously meeting with his mob partner Vito (Louis Giambalvo), Bernie asks to have Larry and Richard killed. However, after Bernie leaves, Vito decides Bernie has been attracting too much attention with his greed and his relationship with Vito’s girlfriend, Tina (Catherine Parks), and orders that he be killed instead.

Bernie arrives at the island before Larry and Richard and plans the murders with Paulie (Don Calfa), the hitman, on the phone, unaware the conversation is being recorded on his answering machine. Bernie then plants cash and a fake confession note implicating Larry and Richard in the insurance fraud. Paulie arrives, killing Bernie with a drug overdose. When Larry and Richard arrive at Bernie’s house, they find Bernie’s body.

Before they can call the police, guests arrive for a party that Bernie used to host every weekend. To Larry and Richard’s amazement, the guests are too engrossed in their partying to notice he is dead, with the dopey grin from the fatal injection and his sunglasses concealing his lifeless state. Fearing implication in Bernie’s death, and wanting to enjoy the luxury of the house for the weekend, Larry proposes he and Richard maintain the illusion that Bernie is still alive, a notion that Richard finds absurd. Only the arrival of Richard’s office crush, Gwen Saunders (Catherine Mary Stewart), a summer intern for the company, convinces him to go along with Larry’s plan.

Weekend at Bernie's Movie Poster (1989)

Weekend at Bernie’s (1989)

Directed by: Ted Kotcheff
Starring: Andrew McCarthy, Jonathan Silverman, Catherine Mary Stewart, Terry Kiser, Don Calfa, Catherine Parks, Eloise DeJoria, Gregory Salata, Margaret Hall
Screenplay by: Robert Klane
Production Design by: Peter Jamison
Cinematography by: François Protat
Film Editing by: Joan E. Chapman
Costume Design by: Nancy Butz
Set Decoration by: Jerie Kelter
Art Direction by: Michael Novotny
Music by: Andy Summers
Distributed by: 20th Century Fox
Release Date: July 5, 1989