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Mainstream - Fargo Blu-ray

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Fargo Blu-ray
William H. Macy, Frances McDormand
The Coen Brothers
Originally released 1996
1:85:1 Widescreen
Fox Home Entertainment 2009
98 minutes

Fargo Blu-ray or Fargo DVD? The Blu-ray version has a 1:85:1 ratio which means the picture fills up the entire widescreen. The DVD has black bars. The picture is also crisper and this is especially true with the blacks and whites of which there are quite a few in this Coen Brothers black comedy. Is the difference in picture quality really worth it if you already have a copy? Not really, especially since the picture strobes for 2-3 seconds in the motel longshot after the scene where the dad closes the door on his son’s bedroom.

This black comedy is probably the best known and most accessible of the Coen Brothers movies. This in part, and as explained in the special feature about Fargo, because you get an in to this world through Margie, the cop. Her being normal and living in a normal world allows you to go along for this very strange ride.

Supposedly based on a true story but not, Fargo is the story of car salesman Jerry Lundergaard (William H. Macy) who hires two thugs to kidnap his wife in exchange for half the ransom and a brand new car. This being a Coen Brothers comedy, things quickly go wrong, go wrong often, and go wrong spectacularly.

Jerry, who is in way over his head, keeps coming up with backup plan after backup plan to keep his head above water. Local cop Marge Gunderson investigates all the deaths and she is a smart cookie.

This black comedy won Academy Awards for best actress, Frances McDormand, and best screenplay. It was also nominated for 5 other Oscars.

Fargo Blu-ray special features include Minnesota Nice, a 30-minute feature on this Coen Brothers movie with most of the stars of the film. Also included are a commentary track by the director of photography, and a trivia track. The trivia track is kind of cool but there are way too many trivia ice cubes, making the process quickly annoying.

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