Flawless McDormand brings 'Olive Kitteridge' to life

October 30, 2014 7:55 PM

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That's one takeaway from Olive Kitteridge (HBO, Sunday and Monday at 9 ET/PT, **** out of four), a quietly captivating miniseries about a seldom-quiet woman. The other is that overrating France McDormand is impossible. With this full-bodied, honestly sympathetic portrait of the difficult, demanding, and ultimately admirable Olive, she reaffirms her status as one of the great actors of our age — one who can lift your spirits, break your heart, and keep you riveted through all four hours of the best movie or miniseries HBO has produced since 2010's Temple Grandin.

With her every scene in this two-part film, beautifully directed by Lisa Cholodenko and ingeniously constructed by Jane Anderson out of Elizabeth Strout's Pulitzer Prize-winning short stories, McDormand shows us another facet of Olive, until we're left with a portrait of a woman in full. The more yo...

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