Olympia Dukakis and Ryan Doucette share a tense moment.
CLOUDBURST written and directed by Thom Fitzgerald from his stage play, with Olympia Dukakis, Brenda Fricker, Kristin Booth and Ryan Doucette. eMotion Pictures release. 93 minutes. Opens Friday (March 8). For venues and times, see listings. Rating: NNN
Thom Fitzgerald's first feature since 2005's 3 Needles, Cloudburst is considerably more cinematic than most of the East Coast director's previous work - despite being an adaptation of his 2010 stage play.
The film showcases fine performances by Olympia Dukakis and Brenda Fricker as Stella and Dotty, an aging Maine couple who decide to drive to Nova Scotia and get married in order to gain legal standing in each other's lives. (Dotty's granddaughter, played on the shrill side by Kristin Booth, wants to put her in a nursing home, and Stella has no say in the matter.)
The couple picks up a hitchhiker (Ryan Doucette, reprising his stage role) along the way, which has led some wags to compare Cloudburst to Thelma & Louise. That's an awfully facile comparison. This movie is going in its own direction.