Barton Fink could write you a stronger wrestling picture. Jerry Lundegaard While it is true that Fargo contains more than a few moments of outright hilarity along with consistently humorous dialogue, it is worth remembering that body count in this “comedy” includes on state trooper, three people who mere happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, a father and his daughter and, most notably, a guy who buys the farm inside a wood chipper after spending the last third of the movie drenched in blood. She happens to be pregnant because that “condition” allows the film to subvert one of the most conditioned responses in the history of Hollywood narrative. For a little bit of money? Fargo is a showcase for McDormand's gifts as a performer. Don'tcha know that? We haven't had any vehicles go missing. : of the Coens' work.

You alright there, Margie? And here ya are, and it's a beautiful day."

Norm Gunderson For many, it's the "Is Tony Soprano dead?" Okay! Aw, what the Chris'! On the 20th anniversary of "Fargo," we pay tribute to police chief Marge Gunderson, the best character in the Coen brothers' filmography. Anton Chigurh has a cooler haircut. H.I. That, more than the accent or the hat, is why we're still talking about her 20 years later. He's on Twitter: @danielvjackson. : I'm not sure I agree with you a hundred percent on your police work, there, Lou. | Marge Gunderson Jerry Lundegaard : So there's no need to... we're doin' all we can here. How's it look, Marge? But what makes Marge so special is that she's not an idiot; instead, the character plays into McDormand's greatest quality as an actress: her intelligence. Marge Gunderson

Pretty darn good, ya want some? Is there a phone down here, you think? Marge Gunderson : The key to why this seemingly purposeless digression from the storyline to introduce and then quickly dismiss a character that seems like he is going to be important later on is the way he totally convinces Marge that his wife has died.

: But can we sit back for a moment and examine why? : Anyone else residing there? : Copyright © 1999 - 2020 GradeSaver LLC.

There's one other character in the film that underlines just how vividly crafted she is: Mike Yanagita. Marge Gunderson : [to Gaear] So, that was Mrs. Lundegaard on the floor in there.

Lou Marge Gunderson : : And thus it succeeds on subverting expectations twice. [to Gaear] 


: Marge Gunderson takes the time while on her official police business visit to the Twin Cities to interview Jerry to have dinner with an old high school friend who clearly has always been carrying a torch for her. Mike Yanagita Fargo simply has a cop that’s pregnant; it is in no way about a cop that is pregnant.

And for what? Marge Gunderson I'm turning in now.

Official Sites Shep Proudfoot Taking a more literary approach, the script for Fargo doesn't introduce Marge, the film's most important character, until over 30 minutes into the movie. Okay!


A movie titled Fargo is expected to take place in Fargo. A lot of people refer to this scene as awkward and out of place and seeming to exist only for the purpose of giving a little background shading to Marge’s character.

Norm Gunderson And as for Fargo being a metaphor for anything…forget it, Jake, it’s no Chinatown.

Failing that, then Fargo should at least be some sort of metaphorical location loaded with meaning such a Chinatown in the film bearing that name.

Oh, for Pete's sake. Shep Proudfoot I'm cooperating. Normally, such an interruption in the investigative narrative like this would produce some sort of emotional or marital complication that affects the investigation. Ah, hon, ya got Arby's all over me. Marge Gunderson Of course they do. Marge Gunderson Prowler needs a jump. Now I'm hungry again. Can you be any more specific?

Sir, right now? No, I gotta - hey, Norm, I thought you were goin' fishin' up at Mille Lacs? I don't have to turn my neck. There are detailed discussion board threads and brilliant blog posts about it. Still, the mere fact that Fargo is very often categorized as a comedy—not just by the Hollywood Foreign Press—only serve to underline that this entire film is about subverting what Hollywood has conditioned audiences to expect. I'm carrying quite a load here. Lou

: Well he's got his gun on his hip there and... he looks like a nice enough guy. :

Hooker No. Norm Gunderson After you claim a section you’ll have 24 hours to send in a draft. Right now. Marge Gunderson Mind if I sit down? I have a reservation. She's appeared in seven of their 17 films, playing everything from a wife having an affair in their debut neo-noir Blood Simple to a chain-smoking film editor in their latest comedy Hail, Caesar! Well, heck! It's a real shame. : I'm not arguing here! : But I challenge you to find a review of the film that doesn’t note that the character is pregnant. What is different here is the level of brutality, violence, pain and physical struggle that goes into the hiding of the filthy lucre. By contrast, Carl Showalter gets shot in the face, murders two men, practically bleed to death, crawls through the snow and digs into ice to hide money that nobody involved in this enterprise will ever located. Yes.


Marge Gunderson

Marge Gunderson Marge Gunderson Psycho is probably the most famous. If Fargo can be said to be about anything, it is subversion. Marge Gunderson

[sitting up in bed, while Norm lies next to her, sleeping]  I just don't understand it. Gaear Grimsrud's a difficult character to understand, in part because he says so little… and in part because he's such a stone-cold sociopath. Yeah. : Yah?

Marge Gunderson : Fargo is a 1996 British-American black comedy thriller film written, produced and directed by Joel and Ethan Coen. No. This is why so many movies begin with a character hitting an alarm clock and rolling out of bed, establishing a boring status quo before the film's "inciting incident" interrupts their daily activity. I told ya. If a major character in a movie is pregnant the first time she appears, the smart money is always---always—on the bet that she is either going to deliver the baby (probably at a crucial and inconvenient moment) or she is somehow going to lose the baby. 'Cause I mean, how do you know? I'll do a damn lot count! You can help us out by revising, improving and updating | : At the request of the survivors, the names have been changed. Not sure you agree with me 100% on my police work there? But are ya sure?

GradeSaver, 27 March 2018 Web. Yep, you sure do, Mrs. Gunderson.


Audiences have never been conditioned to expect that, but they do expect that if a movie claims to be based on a true story, there must be some connection to reality. [growing uncomfortable with the questioning]  : She's the ideal noir hero. [Marge bends over next to the overturned car, as if she's looking at something on the ground]. Norm Gunderson Ma'am, I answered your question! The Coens like to write idiots and cast against type.

: Marge Gunderson They announced it? Maybe Fargo is where Hollywood filmmakers go to break the rules. Marge Gunderson Marge Gunderson : : Company Credits Shep Proudfoot [smiling]  In reality, there is very little Fargo in Fargo. So?

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