Unfortunately for Bernie, there's a bigger price on his own head. Before the execs even arrive, somebody kills Bernie. Larry and Richard arrive at his mansion, discover the dead body, and panic. But a weekend party of tipsy bigwigs floats through before they can contact the police. Shockingly, nobody notices Bernie is dead. Richard then concocts a startling idea: "Why don't we just pretend he didn't die? Just for a bit!"
The two executives position Bernie on a couch and allow the countless guests to enjoy the festivity. The happiness ends, however, when Richard and Larry finally find out that someone still wants them dead.
Weekend at Bernie's doesn't really work, partly because it expects a single joke, that nobody realizes Bernie's dead, to carry the whole movie. Quite often that joke provokes good laughs, especially with a genuinely funny running gag involving a frustrated hit man who just can't seem to rid himself of Bernie. Then there's the hilarious situation that evolves when the two execs take Bernie's speedboat for a spin. Let's just say Bernie gets a little damp by the end of the boat ride.
It isn't the jokes that sink Weekend at Bernie's, but the exhausted, predictable love story that fills the space in between funny moments does. Every second of the sappy subplot feels contrived, to the point where the actors involved look uninterested in each other. Romance has no place in a zany, screwball comedy like Weekend at Bernie's; it only slows the movie down. But director Ted Kotcheff never catches on to these obvious hints. His pacing is so slack that he reminds us why they make fast forward buttons on remote controls.
Run time: 97 mins
In Theaters: Wednesday 5th July 1989
Box Office Worldwide: $30.2M
Distributed by: 20th Century Fox
Production compaines: 20th Century Fox, Gladden Entertainment
Contactmusic.com: 2.5 / 5
Rotten Tomatoes: 52%
Fresh: 12 Rotten: 11
IMDB: 6.3 / 10
Director: Ted Kotcheff
Producer: Victor Drai
Screenwriter: Robert Klane
Starring: Andrew McCarthy as Larry Wilson, Jonathan Silverman as Richard Parker, Catherine Mary Stewart as Gwen Saunders, Terry Kiser as Bernie Lomax, Don Calfa as Paulie, Vito's Hit Man, Catherine Parks as Tina, Vito's Girl, Eloise DeJoria as Tawny