An assistant funeral director's relationship with an elderly widow leads to tragic consequences in this black comedy directed by Richard Linklater. Based on real events in the small Texan town of Carthage in the 1990s, the film tells the story of well-liked local mortician Bernie Tiede (Jack Black), who befriends sour-faced widow Marjorie Nugent (Shirley MacLaine), whose wealth is only matched by how much she's reviled by the townsfolk. As their relationship deepens, the pair quickly become inseparable. But as Marjorie begins to become increasingly dependent on Bernie, he soon finds his kindness repaid by her constant possessiveness and abusive behaviour. With Bernie stretched to breaking point, Marjorie's prolonged and unexplained absence from public view quickly leads to tongue's wagging, and the suspicions of local district attorney Danny Buck (Matthew McConaughey).