Sunday, November 22, 2009

Movie Review: Precious Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire

The opening titles illustrates the perspective of Precious and her literacy level with the misspellings of the film's title and production company names. It's an interesting opening for the film as we see the streets of Harlem in 1987 where Precious' story begins.

Based on the novel Push by Sapphire, the film Precious is about a sixteen year old girl who has been held back in the ninth grade and is pregnant with her second child. She is brought to the principal's office and is offered to attend an alternative school to help her since public school hasn't really made much of a difference for her. Precious is pregnant with her second child by her father and her first child was also concieved by her father, resulting in the child having a mental and physically challenging disabilty.

When Precious arrives home to her mother Mary and tells her of the news, her mother immediately feels threatened that social services may intervene and stop her welfare checks from coming. She beats Precious and verbally bashes her. This abnormal behavior is quite normal for Mary and an everyday occurence. Mary constantly takes out all of her anger and frustration on sixteen year old Precious each and every day as well as force feeds her to eat meals which result in Precious becoming morbidly obese.

The film has stunning performances and the character of Mary played by Mo'Nique is the most extraordinary performance to date by the actress. Lee Daniels has cast Mo'Nique a second time in a very remarkable film. His first film with her was the unforgettable Shadowboxer, in which coincidentally her character's name was also Precious. The movie definitely worth renting. This film will make you cry, make you laugh, and make you cry again. It's a movie that certainly touches your heart whether you empathize or simply sympathize. A+++ all around!

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