Fargo Theatre tribute to “Fargo” — as seen at the Fargo Film Festival

I had moved away from North Dakota, but only recently, when “Fargo” came out. And returning here for the Fargo Film Festival, I was reminded of the region’s ambivalent relationship to the movie that made it famous. In Q & As over the course of the festival, there are plenty of Coen Brothers fans. But you hear from the haters, too. Chatting with some festival goers, you get a sense that some of them never got over “Fargo,” with its cheerful, upbeat “You betchas” and naive, fresh-scrubbed scion of Scandinavia characters peppering the snowy landscape. I loved it, and saw nothing but positives in the way the people were characterized — honest, unfailingly polite, upbeat in spite of the winters, smart, civic-minded. The Norwegians may not tell as many Norwegian jokes about themselves as they used to, as generations move further and further from the Mother Land. But they still have a sense of humor about themselves and how they’re portrayed. And “Fargo”? Margo got her man, and before the woodchipper erased all the evidence, too. A wooden statue of Marge in the theatre foyer? A perfect touch.

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