Blu-ray Review “Fargo: Remastered”

fargo-bluStarring: Frances McDormand, William H. Macy, Steve Buscemi, Peter Stormare, John Carroll Lynch, Harve Presnell
Directors: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen
Rated: R (Restricted)
Studio: MGM
Release Date: April 1, 2014
Run Time: 99 minutes

Film: 5 out of 5 stars
Extras: 3 out of 5 stars

Anytime, I watch “Fargo” it never ceases to amaze me. The film is so dark, yet at the same time SO funny. You are just sitting on your couch going “What the hell just happened”, disgusted yet laughing. It has been a few years since I saw it but it is still as good as always. Since MGM is celebrating its 90th Anniversary, they are re-releasing this Blu-ray but as a brand new remastered edition. If you are not aware this was already released on Blu-ray in 2009 and 2011, but with great results. But this new remastered edition looks even better. Now, if you compare it to MGM’s also recently re-released “Robocop”, it is not as impressive since that was a 4K transfer upgrade. If you never owned this film before, this version is definitely the edition you want. If you already own this I would really run out unless you are a HD video junkie and need that perfect transfer.

Official Premise: The “middle of nowhere” has never looked better in this new edition, now remastered for the best high-definition picture yet! In this film Nominated for seven Oscars things go terribly awry when small-time Minnesota car salesman Jerry Lundegaard (William H. Macy) hires two thugs (Steve Buscemi and Peter Stormare) to kidnap his wife so he can collect the ransom from his wealthy father-in-law. Once people start dying, the very chipper and very pregnant Police Chief Marge (Frances McDormand) takes the case. Will she stop at nothing until she gets her man? You betcha.

When I looked back at my old 2009 Blu-ray, I did realize quite the improvement with the new remastered 1080p transfer. You can tell right from that amazing opening shot. The snowy world that engulfs the film looks much clearly and also sharper. When it comes to The Coen Brothers, you should expect specific choices for cinematography, kudos to  Roger Deakins. This film is really a great example of a fantastic well-shot film presented perfectly on Blu-ray. In terms of audio tracks, this Blu-ray re-uses the same DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track from the previous disc, but that doesn’t mean it is bad. The previous releases have sounded quite amazing, specifically Carter Burwell’s score which is outstanding.

I was hoping for something new in the special features department but what we get here is the same extras from the previously Blu-ray’s, which then was also a straight port from the DVD version.  There is an audio commentary track from director of photography Roger Deakins, if you enjoyed the cinematography like I did then this is a great track. There are a few featurettes “Minnesota Nice” and “Trivia Nice”. Lastly, there is an “Article from American Cinematographer” and a theatrical trailer, TV spot and photo gallery included. If there was a little more in this department, this would would have been a must-upgrade for any fan for sure.

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