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Fargo DVD cover

A Previous Chilling Presentation
at Friday Night Movies:


Friday the 21st of January
Pot luck supper @ 7pm, Movie @ 8pm

A lot can happen in the middle of nowhere.
--Original tagline


USA: 1996 -- Directed by Joel & Ethan Cohen
Written by Joel & Ethan Cohen
Starring William H. Macy, Frances McDormand and Steve Buscemi

And I guess that was your accomplice in the woodchipper.
--Frances McDormand as Marge Gunderson

Leave it to the wildly inventive Coen brothers (Joel directs, Ethan produces, they both write) to concoct a fiendishly clever kidnap caper that's simultaneously a comedy of errors, a Midwestern satire, a taut suspense thriller, and a violent tale of criminal misfortune. It all begins when a hapless car salesman (played to perfection by William H. Macy) ineptly orchestrates the kidnapping of his own wife. The plan goes horribly awry in the hands of bumbling bad guys Steve Buscemi and Peter Stormare (one of them being described by a local girl as "kinda funny lookin'" and "not circumcised"), and the pregnant sheriff of Brainerd, Minnesota (played exquisitely by Frances McDormand in an Oscar-winning role) is suddenly faced with a case of multiple murders. Her investigation is laced with offbeat observations about life in the rural hinterland of Minnesota and North Dakota, and Fargo embraces its local yokels with affectionate humor. At times shocking and hilarious, Fargo is utterly unique and distinctly American, bearing the unmistakable stamp of its inspired creators. --Jeff Shannon

Hope to see you there. I'll save you an aisle seat next to the wood chipper.

Frances McDormand as Marge Gunderson William H. Macy



Ranks #? on the Internet Movie Database's Top 250 Movies

Won Oscar for Best Actress in a Leading Role (Frances McDormand) and Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen (Ethan Coen & Joel Coen)

Nominated for Oscars for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor in a Supporting Role (William H. Macy), Best Cinematography & Best Film Editing

Nominated for Golden Globes for Best Motion Picture - Comedy/Musical, Best Director - Motion Picture, Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture - Comedy/Musical, Best Screenplay - Motion Picture

More awards

Memorable Quotes

Marge Gunderson: You have no call to get snippy with me; I'm just trying to do my job here.

Marge Gunderson: I'm not sure I agree with you a hundred percent on your police work, there, Lou.

Mike Yanagita: So, uh, you married old Norm son-of-a-Gunderson?

More quotes

Peter Stormare and Steve Buscemi Frances McDormand



When working on her Minnesota accent for the film, Frances McDormand worked with Larissa Kokernot, "Hooker #1." McDormand referred to her accent and mannerisms as "Minnesota Nice."

Filming of outdoor scenes had to be constantly moved all over Minnesota, North Dakota, and Canada because spring was approaching and the snow kept melting too fast.

William H. Macy begged the directors for the role of Jerry Lundegaard. He did two readings for the part, and became convinced he was the best man for the role. When the Coens didn't get back to him on the subject, he flew to New York (where they were commencing production) and said, "I'm very, very worried that you are going to screw up this movie by giving this role to somebody else. It's my role, and I'll shoot your dogs if you don't give it to me." (He was joking, of course.)

Upon entering Brainerd from the south, there is a statue of Paul Bunyan with a sign reading "Welcome to Brainerd". In reality, there is no such statue in Brainerd. Outside of Brainerd there was a Paul Bunyan amusement park, featuring a huge likeness of Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox. This park has since gone out of business in August of 2003.

None of the movie scenes, either exterior or interior, were actually filmed in Fargo. The bar exterior shown at the beginning of the movie is located in Northeast Minneapolis.

More trivia



Errors in geography: I-35 does not form part of the route between Brainerd and Minneapolis / St. Paul.

More goofs

William H. Macy Kristin Rudrüd