The Truth behind Bernie Twenty miles from the Louisiana Border in Carthage, Texas on August 12, 1997 the body of the wealthiest widow of the town Marjorie Nugent was found stuffed into her own deepfreeze by her companion Bernie Tiede. In terms of Nugent’s personality and opinions of her held by the townspeople of Carthage, Hollandsworth writes that “According to most locals, she acted as if she was too good for Carthage,” therefore leaving the town feeling bad for Tiede. After Nugent’s husband died she and Tiede quickly became friends. Nugent soon took Tiede everywhere she went and he ate up the lifestyle she had to offer. With the lifestylet took a strong toll on Tiede. Tiede states that “She showered Tiede with gifts; she gave Tiede three million dollars in exchange for all of his attention. It got worse and worse, she was becoming more possessive of my time and my energy. I felt like I was in prison” (Torre). Tiede enjoyed the lifestyle too much to walk away and it resulted in him murdering Nugent. His sister even stated that “Bernie was living in a dream” (Hollandsworth). The movie Bernie does a poor job at telling the story of Marjorie Nugent’s murder. The movie creates sympathy for Tiede’s actions by portraying his character wrong when hiding the corps of Nugent and making it seem as if the murder was not a premeditated act.
The movie gives the audience a sympathetic view on Tiede by making him a victim to Nugent’s everyday abuse. In Linklater’s movie Tiede’s lawyer tries to plea temporary insanity. Tiede envisioned Nugent chewing annoyingly while he picks up the gun and starts firing at her. In reality this contradicts the fact that Tiede did not go temporary insane because he states “I thought about hitting her over the head with a baseball bat, but I thought that would be too cruel,” (Brunner) proving that Tiede had other thoughts of killing Nugent times before. The movie Bernie shows Tiede shooting Nugent four times while she is still standing
Cited: Bernie. Dir. Richard Linklater. Perf. Jack Black, Shirley McClaine, Matthew McConaughey. Millennium Entertainment, 2011. Film.
Brunner, Scott. “Bernie Tiede: The Killer Inside Him.” Youtube. Youtube, LLC. 14 Apr. 2012. Web. 30 Oct. 2013.
Hollandsworth, Skip. “Midnight in the Garden of East Texas.” Texas Monthly. Jan. 1998. Web. 30 Oct. 2013.
Rhodes, John. “How My Aunt Marge Ended up in the Deep Freeze.” New York Times. 12 Apr. 2012. Web. 30 Oct. 2013.
Torre, Melanie. “Jailhouse Interview With Bernie Tiede.” Youtube. Youtube, LCC. 13 Nov. 2012.Web. 30 Oct. 2013.