|Based on||Olive Kitteridge|
by Elizabeth Strout
|Teleplay by||Jane Anderson|
|Directed by||Lisa Cholodenko|
|Music by||Carter Burwell|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of episodes||4|
|Editor||Jeffrey M. Werner|
|Running time||233 minutes|
|Release||November 2 –|
November 3, 2014
Olive Kitteridge is an American television miniseries based on Elizabeth Strout's 2008 novel Olive Kitteridge. Set in Maine, the HBO miniseries features Frances McDormand as the title character, Richard Jenkins as Olive's loving husband Henry Kitteridge, Zoe Kazan as Denise Thibodeau, and Bill Murray as Jack Kennison. The show is divided into four parts, each depicting a certain point of time in the novel.
The miniseries debuted in the United States on November 2, 2014, on the American premium TV network HBO, which aired the show's first two episodes back-to-back that evening; the third and fourth episodes aired back-to-back the following evening. It was shown in a similar format in the United Kingdom on Sky Atlantic, on December 14 and December 15, 2014. It premiered in Australia on Showcase from 13 January 2015. At the 67th Primetime Emmy Awards, the miniseries won eight awards including Outstanding Limited Series.
Olive Kitteridge is a misanthropic and strict, but well-meaning, retired schoolteacher who lives in the fictional seaside town of Crosby, Maine. She is married to Henry Kitteridge, a kind, considerate man who runs a pharmacy downtown, and has a troubled son named Christopher, who grows up to be a podiatrist. For 25 years, Olive has experienced problems of depression, bereavement, jealousy, and friction with family members and friends.
- Frances McDormand as Olive Kitteridge
- Richard Jenkins as Henry Kitteridge
- Zoe Kazan as Denise Thibodeau
- Rosemarie DeWitt as Rachel Coulson
- Martha Wainwright as Angela O'Meara
- Ann Dowd as Bonnie Newton
- Jesse Plemons as Jerry McCarthy
- Bill Murray as Jack Kennison
- John Gallagher Jr. as Christopher Kitteridge (adult)
- Devin Druid as Christopher Kitteridge (age 13)
- John Mullen as Kevin Coulson (age 13)
- Cory Michael Smith as Kevin Coulson (adult)
- Peter Mullan as Jim O'Casey
- Rachel Brosnahan as Patty Howe
- Brady Corbet as Henry Thibodeau
- Maryann Urbano as Linda Kennison
- Libby Winters as Suzanne
- Patricia Kalember as Joyce
- Audrey Marie Anderson as Ann
- Donna Mitchell as Louise Larkin
- Frank L. Ridley as Mr. Thibodeau
|No.||Title||Directed by||Written by||Original release date|
|1||"Pharmacy"||Lisa Cholodenko||Jane Anderson||November 2, 2014|
|Maine, 1980. Olive Kitteridge is a no-nonsense high school math teacher who doesn't suffer fools and never hesitates to express an opinion, no matter how much hurt she might cause. She treats her husband Henry with indifference and is strict with her son Christopher, who struggles to please her. Henry is the local pharmacist and after his long-time assistant dies from a stroke, he hires a young woman, Denise Thibodeau, whose husband is also named Henry. The two Henrys go hunting with a third man, and the younger Henry is killed in a freak accident. The older Henry grows close to Denise after her husband's death, teaching her how to drive and gifting her an adopted kitten. Olive harbors an attraction to an English teacher at her school and takes an interest in Kevin Coulson, one of her students whose mother Rachel suffers from bipolar disorder.|
|2||"Incoming Tide"||Lisa Cholodenko||Jane Anderson||November 2, 2014|
|Years have passed and Kevin Coulson, now studying in New York City to be a psychiatrist, returns to town. He struggles with the effects of his mother Rachel's suicide and experiences symptoms of schizophrenia, including vivid hallucinations. Kevin is contemplating suicide himself, but is interrupted by Olive, who engages him in conversation about the town and notices a gun in the back seat of his car. Kevin also saves a former classmate from drowning. Christopher is about to marry, and Olive invites Kevin to attend the rehearsal dinner. Olive dislikes her future daughter-in-law, Suzanne, as well as her prospective in-laws. She invites Kevin to stay with them and to the wedding the next day. On the day of the wedding, Olive acts coldly to those around her, including her new in-laws and members of Suzanne's family.|
|3||"A Different Road"||Lisa Cholodenko||Jane Anderson||November 3, 2014|
|Olive and Henry are saddened when they receive a call from Christopher, now living in California and working as a podiatrist, to say that he and Suzanne are getting a divorce. Henry appears content with his divorce and explains that he is in therapy. He also tells his parents that he will not be coming to Maine for a visit. Returning home from a dinner out, Olive and Henry stop at a hospital to use the bathroom. Two gun-toting addicts arrive looking for drugs, taking patients and staff members hostage. While held captive, Olive and Henry argue, blaming each other for Christopher's unwillingness to visit. Olive also reveals that she planned to leave him for her former colleague. After the ordeal, Christopher suggests that his parents should enter counseling, but Olive won't hear of it. Henry suffers a stroke and loses his ability to communicate.|
|4||"Security"||Lisa Cholodenko||Jane Anderson||November 3, 2014|
|Olive visits Christopher and his new wife Ann in New York City, but relations between them continue to be strained. Olive likes Ann more than she liked Christopher's first wife but is critical about how Ann parents her two children from previous relationships and her housekeeping skills. The tension culminates in a fight between Olive and Christopher, who argues that she was harsh and uncaring to him as a child. Olive returns from her trip early, learning that her husband has died. Six months later, Olive befriends a wealthy widower, Jack Kenison, and the two enter a relationship despite their initial disagreements.|
Olive Kitteridge received widespread critical acclaim for its writing, directing, cinematography, and Frances McDormand's central performance as well as those of Jenkins, Murray and Gallagher. On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the show has an approval rating of 95% based on 63 reviews, with an average rating of 8.68/10. The website's critics consensus reads: "Olive Kitteridge's narrative slow burn enhances fascinating performances – and a story worthy of its source material." On Metacritic, it has a weighted average score of 89 out of 100, based on 34 critics, indicating "universal acclaim".
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