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The plot of the Coen brothers brilliant black comedy Fargo revolves around Jerry Lundegaard's desperate need for some large sum of money.

Is there any hint at all as to why he needs it or how he managed to get himself into a place where he is so desperate he is willing to trigger the whole fake kidnap?

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The movie never says, but his wife comes from money, and I always assumed he put himself in debt trying to support her in the manner to which she had become accustomed. –  Michael Stern Apr 22 at 16:53

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I have seen the movie several times and just looked up a few reviews, and none of them explicitly mention the reason for the money. According to IMDB's exhaustive plot synopsis, the debts are "anonymous".

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