Jeff Smith 11:52 a.m., June 19
The Trip to Bountiful
Sylvia M'Lafi Thompson is giving an unforgettable performance at New Village Arts. She plays Carrie Watts, a woman near death wanting to make a final trip to her roots in Bountiful, Texas. Her son and his wife block the move: she has a weak heart, and they need her pension checks. Horton Foote's loose, longish script shows signs of age. NVA's opening night could have used an across-the-board tightening as well. As Jesse Mae Watts, Yolanda Franklin's a relentless, yet somehow likeable, nag. Walter Murray's Ludie's a referee trying to officiate the match between his mother and wife without showing favoritism. And Thompson's Carrie evolves from a starless night to a gleaming Texas dawn.