When it comes to film snobbery, I talk a good game. My two favorite films (Christ, look at that -- I even call movies "films") are both French and old, I review mostly indie and foreign fare and I work myself into a lather at the news of every new Hollywood remake. But if you happen into my apartment and see me sitting on the couch with the TV on, laughing like a hyena as a dead guy being pulled behind a boat has his head smashed repeatedly into channel markers, you'll have seen the real Martha Fischer. Yes, my long charade is over: I freaking love Weekend at Bernie's.

I don't even remember the first time I saw it, but I do remember that I talked about it so much that it was the first VHS tape my little brother ever bought -- he got it for me, for my birthday. I can honestly say that I've seen the movie upwards of 30 times, and that it still slays me, every damn time. Even the throwaway lines, like "Hot enough for ya, Richard?" and "This sucks. I am so unhappy!" fill me with joy -- albeit a special, incredibly stupid kind of joy. Don't get me wrong here: I'd never argue for a second that Weekend at Bernie's is anything but a horrible movie. The fact is that it sucks. Apart from Terry Kiser as Bernie and Andrew McCarthy who, having shaken off his 80's-long pallor, is so gleeful he's impossible not to enjoy, the acting is dreadful (why did people EVER hire Jonathan Silverman and Catherine Mary Stewart?), the script is pathetic, and the story is so dumb it doesn't even deserve the word "plot." And yet ... I love it. Honestly, I have no idea why. Granted, I'm a sucker for physical comedy (I nearly swallowed my tongue when the bowling ball hit Uncle Buck in the head), but that's not enough of a reason to sit through this movie once, let alone dozens of times. For some reason, though, I'm willing to relax (or, rather, completely dismiss) my normal standards any time I come near this movie -- I've actually driven people from my home by stopping on it while flipping channels. When they realize I seriously intend to watch Weekend at Bernie's people leave in droves. Hmm. Maybe that's why I'm not married ....

And before you ask, no, I haven't seen the sequel. Jeez. I have SOME pride.
categories Features, Cinematical