Monday, September 20, 2010


After waiting for months, I finally got my turn to watch the library’s copy of Precious (Am I legally obligated to say the part about the novel it’s based on? I’m going to risk it, and you say it in your mind if you so choose.) Despite all I’d heard about Precious not being a complete downer movie, I didn’t quite believe it and braced myself for a rough hour-and-a-half. But, even though there were plenty of depressing moments (and one scene that made me say “no, no, no” to my screen) Precious was not an emotionally overwhelming movie.

Precious (Gabourey Sidibe), an overweight black teen, lives in an abusive household. She is pregnant with her second child by her father, who sexually abuses her, and her mother (Mo’Nique), resenting her for this, abuses her physically. When Precious is kicked out of her high school, she begins attending an alternative school where an attentive teacher (Paula Patton) teaches her (and the class of struggling teen girls) how to read and write.

The acting in Precious was phenomenal. After watching Sidibe stumble through hosting Saturday Night Live last year, I didn’t expect her acting to impress me, (though I now recognize this was stupid, considering she was nominated for an Academy Award). Sidibe was great, though, making me care about Precious right from the beginning. Mo’Nique portrayed the depth of her character, making her more than the one-sided villain of the movie (though you do hate her).

One of things I found most effective within Precious was the use of internal monologue and fantasies. Typically, using a voiceover to show what a character is thinking seems cheesy and tacked on, but in Precious, it was natural.

I recommend Precious, and give it a 5/5. Though it’s not one of those movies you want to watch a million times, it is definitely worth watching it once.

Watch Jon Stewart’s interview with director Lee Daniels

Buy the DVD

1 comment:

  1. Mo’Nique's performance was what really amazed me in this, particularly the scene when she's ranting away with the baby on her lap, obviously improvising her reactions to what the baby is doing in the midst of an intense tirade. Great stuff.