Precious: Based On The Novel "Push" By Sapphire


Sidibe as Precious Jones with Lenny Kravitz?

This movie will likely get nominated for many Oscars and possibly win a few in the process but is it that good? My answer would be no. Sometimes expectations rattle a movie before you watch it and this is a good case of it. No matter what people say, Precious is not worth the advance hype it is getting. Don't get me wrong, there are powerful scenes in it and an incredibly intense & scary performance by Monique -that's right Monique- but I'm not about to warm up to a movie that likes to push your buttons and demand you to immediately love it. That's what Precious is to me- A film so full of itself that it demands, no make that begs, for you to fall in its shocking traps.

Its story is that of immense trauma. Clarice 'Precious' is an obese black girl that gets verbally abused by her mother and raped by her father, in turn she ends up mothering his two kids & tries to get out of the place she most hates, home. There's a cameo by Mariah Carey- as a social worker- that cannot get passed the fact that you are watching Mariah try to act & there's also a kind of unusual focus on 'Higher Learning' as precious tries to cope with education and the hard knock life. It's staggering stuff & -at times- very powerful and real. The scenes of abuse are hypnotic because of how well staged they are by newcomer Lee Daniels, who's a natural with the camera and invokes flashbacks that have Precious dreaming of walking the runway one day as a beauty queen.

I can think of numerous critics participating in the backlash of the film- most notably Glenn Kenny, who's refusal to even see it, is a clear indicator of the intense debate that will likely rage on once Awards time comes along this January. Gabourey "Gabby" Sidibe plays Precious and don't be surprised if she becomes the front runner for this year's Best Actress race -along with An Education's Carey Mulligan. It's her first movie role and -as much as it sounds cliched and repetitive- she was born to be Precious Jones. It's one thing to be on camera and expose yourself and all your flaws but what Sidibe does is play a role that is so demanding and crucial to the heart of this preciously flawed and relentlessly assaulting film.

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