Yeah, That’s a Good One

With a comforting, monotone niceness, Fargo brings the world along to stare into North Dakota, where the only uppity people are those from the outside. Fargo exists in a space where an honest apology is expected if murdering someone, and trashy business deals go south with a smile.

Fargo’s distinctive, chilly demeanor doesn’t put a damper on anyone or anything. Not even a kidnapping and triple homicide can either. These are a people so content with their lives and raised so formally, they never once have a worry. They don’t judge either, at least not directly. Interrogating two women who slept with possible suspects, local cop Marge Gunderson (Fraces McDormand) politely pries answers while making shocked faces as they tell what they know. That’s life in Fargo.

The genius of Fargo happens in its first act

It’s a golden rule in comedy – play it straight, and never acknowledge the joke. No one in Fargo knows they’re offbeat, odd, and weird in their niceties. When a masked man appears outside of Jane Lundegaard’s (Kristin Rudurd) home, she doesn’t panic, but looks on quizzically. Rather than run, she’s considering if he’s just lost rather than a kidnapper. People don’t kidnap people in Fargo. Before then, anyway.

Every single person in Fargo seems to exist in a quiet, calming peace, as if in a state of perpetual contentment. If something is wrong, they let it go, and for Jerry Lundegaard (William H. Macy) he makes the mistake of trying to push through his problems, fumbling on his plot to extort his father-in-law, and inadvertently leaving behind more bodies.

The genius of Fargo happens in its first act, establishing the unique (and unlike anything else) tone to viewers. Jerry is seen trying to calm a customer in his car dealership, the buyer infuriated by an extra $500 charge. Being Jerry, he manages to use the goodwill to swindle the man who politely relents considering the context. For Marge, it’s a 3am wake-up call about bodies found by the roadside. You betcha she’s immediately awake, and her dutiful husband is ready to make her eggs.

Were it not for the corrupting force of the loud Carl Showalter (Steve Buscemi) and near-mute Geaer Grimsrud (Peter Stormare) who never learn the right way to schmooze these people, Fargo would remain uncorruptible. They yell, they curse, they get angry. No one else does. Those bungling idiots never pick up on the social cues though. For that, their fate is sealed, as is everyone’s who deals with them.


Well it’s about time – Fargo finally looks like film at home. No egregious processing, no excessive halos, and pure, pristine film grain make this release a delight to watch. The natural sharpness evident here is impeccable, and finds detail en masse missing from previous discs. Facial texture shows exquisite resolution and clarity.

While generally capped by cool tones via the weather, Fargo does produce excellent, deep primaries. Flesh tones warm enough to give them depth. On occasion, other primaries excel too, as needed.

Dolby Vision adds bounce to both the contrast and black levels, adding zest and life to Fargo where it used to have little. Primarily, it’s the level of definition that makes Fargo look so dazzling on UHD, but that’s not to understate improvements all across the transfer.


Unremarkable but functional, DTS-HD 5.1 does what it needs to. Slight ambiance inside bars or outside when driving bring a small directional spark to a dialog-led movie. Stereos and rears activate only in a few instances. Range is showcased a few times to a light degree.

No fidelity issues rear their head. Every line sounds as if new.


Cinematographer Roger Deakins begins the bonuses, followed by an older featurette and interviews. An article from American Cinematographer joins stills and a trailer at the end.

Full disclosure: This Blu-ray was provided to us for review. This has not affected the editorial process. For information on how we handle review material, please visit our about us page to learn more.

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Friendly friendliness is the highlight of Fargo’s enchanting and endless charm – all happening behind murder and kidnapping.

User Review
4.33 (3 votes)

The following six screen shots serve as samples for our subscription-exclusive set of 42 full resolution uncompressed 4K screen shots grabbed directly from the UHD:

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