Cinematographer Roger Deakins describes his camera work in Fargo (1996, dir. Joel and Ethan Coen) as "observational" and "considered."
Long takes. Basic angles.
The film pays a visual respect to a simple type of American life. At first coming across as satire, the film actually endears the setting and its inhabitants. There is beauty in the simplicity, but there is also a subtle oddity that exists within this environment and these characters. The film brings these oddities to the forefront, and, in doing so, brilliantly turns the camera back on the viewer. We can all be a bit strange at times, and there is a depth to each and every one of us. That notion is why the film has endured - a satirical display encourages a moment of introspection for the viewer.
The film's star character - Marge, played by Frances McDormand - emerges from the cold Midwest as our eyes and ears on this bizarre journey. Her clear sharpness (contrasted with her understated wit) is often a step ahead of the other characters, and of us. Marge guides us through this story as our moral compass, and adds a much needed warmth to a film encompassed by dark characters and cold winter breezes.
We are sharing the movie Fargo this Saturday at Videology Bar & Cinema in Williamsburg. Whether it is the humor, the cinematography, the script or the performances - we know this movie has something for everyone. We hope to see you there.