It's the week of new releases with short titles! Sacha Baron Cohen's latest film The Dictator is out on DVD today along with Bernie, Bonsai and Weekend.
Comic Sacha Baron Cohen re-teams with director Larry Charles (Borat, Bruno) for this satirical tale of an oppressive, democracy-hating dictator and a goatherder (both played by Cohen) whose misadventures in America lead to a series of outrageous culture clashes. Anna Faris, Ben Kingsley, and Curb Your Enthusiasm's J.B. Smoove co-star.
Julio, a struggling young writer, lands an interview with a famous author to transcribe his latest book. When he doesn't get the job, instead of admitting it to his girlfriend, Julio pretends to transcribe the new work by writing it himself. Searching for inspiration and a plot, he revisits a romance from his college days. As Julio's novel progresses, so does his fondness for the past and the love he let slip away.
Director Richard Linklater teams with writer Skip Hollandsworth for this darkly comic docudrama detailing the unusual friendship between a likable Texas mortician and a wealthy but reviled widow, and the shocking crime that followed. Inspired by Hollandsworth's 1998 Texas Monthly article that first caught the attention of Linklater, Bernie takes place in Carthage, TX, where effeminate mortician Bernie Tiede (Jack Black) enjoys a reputation as a friendly and upstanding member of the community. Marjorie Nugent (Shirley MacLaine), on the other hand, couldn't hold a lower position on the local social scale. Repressed and bitter, nasty Marjorie has isolated herself from her neighbors, and as a result has been essentially shunned in her small town. The moment Bernie shows Marjorie a shred of kindness, she clings to him tightly and refuses to let go. Meanwhile, as Marjorie becomes Bernie's sugar mama and the pair becomes inseparable, the local rumor mill begins to churn. Eventually, her intense jealousy becomes too much for Bernie to take. When the caustic widow's body is discovered stuffed in her own freezer, local District Attorney Buck Davidson (Matthew McConaughey) vows that justice will be served, but he finds it difficult to build a convincing case against Bernie as the locals rally to his defense.
Rating: Not Rated
'Weekend' follows Russell (newcomer Tom Cullen, Best Actor winner at Nashville), who, after randomly picking up artist Glen (Chris New) at a nightclub on a Friday night, unexpectedly spends most of the next 48 hours with him in bedrooms and bars, telling stories and having sex, while developing a connection that will resonate throughout their lives. This affecting and naturalistic romance is beautifully realized, earning comparisons to Richard Linklater's 'Before Sunrise' in its exploration of how two people can come together only briefly, yet impact each other in a profound way.