Like its predecessor, WEEKEND AT BERNIE'S II is a one-joke film, extracting all its laughs from the basic device of having two hapless innocents drag a corpse around for 90 minutes. In the first film, fledgling insurance drones Larry Wilson (Andrew McCarthy) and Richard Parker (Jonathan
Silverman) discover a $2 million discrepancy in the company's books--evidence, they realize, of embezzlement. As a reward for their diligence, their boss, Bernie Lomax (Terry Kiser), invites them to his beach house for the weekend. Before they arrive, though, Bernie--who is, in fact, the
embezzler--arranges for the mob to dispose of Larry and Richard. But the mob sends a hit man over to kill Bernie instead, and the young twosome discover their boss's body when they arrive at the beachhouse. Larry and Richard spend the remainder of the film hauling Bernie up and down the beach
pretending he is still alive, so that they won't be arrested for murder.
WEEKEND AT BERNIE'S II begins shortly after the conclusion of the first movie, with Larry and Richard (again played by McCarthy and Silverman) at the morgue identifying their dead boss (Kiser). Expecting a promotion for rooting out an embezzler, they return to their office, only to be accused by
an office affairs agent, Hummel (Barry Bostwick), of colluding with Lomax and subsequently fired. Larry, though, has found in Bernie's personal effects (which he swiped from the morgue) a key to a safety deposit box in St. Thomas, and deduces that it must contain the embezzled $2 million--a sum
that would do nicely in lieu of pensions. However, the mob is also interested in the missing money, and they hire a St. Thomas voodoo queen to turn the dead Bernie into an undead zombie that can lead them to the cash. Everyone heads to St. Thomas, where Larry and Richard race against the mob and
the voodoo queen to find the lost millions.
Despite its inane plot, the first WEEKEND AT BERNIE'S succeeded because it didn't try too hard. Larry and Richard were depicted as two slackers enjoying the good life on their boss's nickel, while Kiser's performance as the dead Bernie was genuinely hilarious. Though Kiser makes the zombified
Bernie equally funny, WEEKEND AT BERNIE'S II spends too little time with him, and too much getting bogged down by subplots: two mob pawns' bumbling attempts to steal Bernie's corpse; Hummel's tailing Larry and Richard through St. Thomas, only to be arrested time and time again; Larry's failed
romance with an island native whose physician father is, conveniently, versed in black magic; and Richard's being poisoned by the voodoo queen. At the film's conclusion, unfortunately, Bernie is still a fully animate zombie, leaving open the possibility of a third weekend. (Violence, nudity.)
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- Released: 1993
- Rating: PG
- Review: Like its predecessor, WEEKEND AT BERNIE'S II is a one-joke film, extracting all its laughs from the basic device of having two hapless innocents drag a corpse around for 90 minutes. In the first film, fledgling insurance drones Larry Wilson (Andrew McCarth… (more)