Not quite what I was expecting.
Viciously abused by her mother (Mo’Nique) and pregnant by her father, Harlem teen Precious Jones (Gabourey Sidibe) has an unexpected chance at a different life when she enrolls in an alternative school. Teacher Blu Rain (Paula Patton) encourages her, but Precious must battle unimaginable barriers everywhere in her life. Lee Daniels directs his drama that features appearances by Mariah Carey and Lenny Kravitz.
So I’ve been basically wanting to see this film forever, and now that I finally have got to, I’m just wondering what all this crazy buzz is about.
The film is highly grim. This poor girl’s life is just so upsetting and miserable that at times it was just hard to watch. I mean just the idea of this girl having her 2nd daughter from her father, byt then her mom being the biggest bitch ever, makes us feel even worse.
Lee Daniels brings an almost psychedelic quality to the film through Precious’ eyes as a way of escapism from the cruelty of life. But where there is pain, there is always hope and this is why the movie evolves into a harrowing film where education brings Precious acceptance, independence, and hope for a better life.
The only problem was that I didn’t feel any emotional strife to this film like everybody was talking about. I felt bad for this girl and wanted her to do better, but I wasn’t so into it. I feel like the film dives too much into the grim reality of things without showing more of how Precious gets a long with her life.
The message at the end of the film didn’t really look like it fit in this film. The portrayal, though powerful, of these people I felt like they were a bit stereotypical. Always saying the n-word, or just being down right dirty didn’t look like it was doing anything right for African Americans.
Sidibe gives the performance that most shy actors would over-play, but instead when she loses control of her emotions, oh she really does. The best here however is Mo’Nique. She gives the most riveting and scariest performance I have seen in a long time from any star. She is filled with so much hate and anger, that every time she was exploding I was so afraid of what she was doing. The other performances from Mariah Carey and Lenny Kravitz are actually pretty good, and make good supporting roles.
Consensus: Precious is a grim but sometimes lively tale filled with imagination, and great performances from its cast, but doesn’t succeed fully with its ending and message.