Friday, November 27, 2009


Not a huge fan of Precious. I'm going to give you my grade right off the bat for the movie instead of having you wait until the end to yell at me in the comments section (or possibly agree?)!


What I liked....

Stop reading if you don't want some plot twists, turns, and 180s to be ruined if you haven't seen the film!

Superb acting. Honestly, Precious is better acted in one scene than other movies are in their entire length. Obviously, it's been said that they will get Oscar nominations and of course that only makes sense given the material given to these two women and the way they handle every painful scene. However, I definitely don't want Sidibe to win for this, not with Carey Mulligan in the race at least. Mo'Nique, while great, ends on such a meh note for me character-ly, so even if it's great acting I was distracted by the movie's poorly written character.

Lee Daniels keeps it from being a bit melodramatic, even if Precious deals with one too many problems. Good job, Daniels!

Tangent- This could or could not be the film's fault. The few dramatic lines that got a laugh from the audience (at least the one I was with). Example (and I'm paraphrasing):

Mo'Nique: Precious, your father died today.
Precious: Is that it?

Why the hell did this get a laugh? Now I would normally fault the audience for this, I mean, this isn't supposed to be funny. Her relationship with her father was sad and terrible to think about, and in my opinion this line should not have garnered a laugh. However, is this the film's fault? I need help with this one. I personally still don't see the humor in it, but to get such a "Ha!" from an audience and a few attacks from other reviews of "unintentional" humor, maybe the film should have approached that differently. Well, it worked for me.

What I didn't like....
Spoiler alert continues...

Mo'Nique's ending monologue. "Oh, it moved me to tears!" What? That moved you to tears? Am I missing something? How do I sympathize with this monster who spent the majority of the movie attacking Precious, both verbally and physically?

That horrific ending. Had the last 10 minutes of this film never existed, I would have liked it more. Precious walks out, triumphant after the last "showdown" with her mother, and a musical montage of sorts starts as she walks down the street, nowhere to go, no money, nothing to eat, with her two children. What? You must think I'm crazy for not liking this when I loved An Education, which has a pretty ambiguous ending. Precious just never ended though. She has HIV, a child with down syndrome, and an infant in her hands, and the movie ends? I know not everything can be resolved, but c'mon. That wasn't "uplifting," like others have said. That was just an easy way to make everyone feel great: have Precious storm out of the meeting with her abusive mom and play music!

Mariah Carey performance praise, namely the Oscar buzz. This is less the film's fault than the buzz's fault, but really? All she did was de-glam and deliver some lines. It's better than Glitter, but if this is ever considered Oscar/Awards in general-worthy, then that is terribly sad and pathetic. What she did was acting. What Mo'Nique and Gabourey Sidibe did was embody a character.

So, if this becomes a major awards winner, I'll be pretty upset. What about you?



  1. First of all, I TOTALLY disagree with the negative comments.

    And Sidibe turned in a brilliant performance. It's easy to play smart, it's hard to play dumb.

    Second, MoNique churns out the best supporting performance of this decade. Enough said.

    Third, her ending monologue, you're not supposed to sympathize with her. You're supposed to pity her.

    To me, this was the best film of this year. And if you went into this wanting An Education, you would probably be disappointed.

  2. I didn't read your review because I've not seen it. I'll reserve judgement, but power to you for having an opinion. I'll give you more when I see it. Oh, by the way. Pippa Lee was not bad at all. A review will be up soon.

  3. @ Sage- I can still barely pity her! Mo'Nique was great, but I just don't think her character ended the way it should have.

    @ Andrew - Thanks! I had to get this one off my chest haha. And I look forward to a Pippa Lee review!

  4. The movie is exactly like the book, so they only made the character the way the original author made it.

    I don't even think you're supposed to pity her, you're supposed to just accept her mental illness and abusive ways.

  5. Then why be moved to tears? I accepted Raymond Babbitt without being moved to tears, and he had a mental illness and was more prominently featured than Mo'Nique's character.

    The source material is flawed if this movie is exactly like the book, so I guess it's Sapphire who is to blame. And are you telling me that this ending was good? Endings that end "prematurely" can be great, as they can fill us with hope for the future of the characters (An Education) or despair (American Beauty), and unfortunately Precious does neither in my opinion. It just throws Precious into the world and some happy music plays. Meh.

    This film was pretty much what I expected, though filled with more stereotypes than I had anticipated. Don't get me wrong, there were many scenes I liked and felt the pain of living as Precious does, hence the B-. The movie as a whole never fully came together for me though. It's acted incredibly well and Lee Daniels keeps it from being too soap operaish, given the melodramatic source material. Overall, I thought it was OK, but not a film to rave about.

  6. The ending is supposed to be full of hope. Hello, she just stood up to the monster MoNique and can finally live her life without being abused 24/7.

    And Mary Jones is not Raymond Babbitt. And if you ask me, Monique did a better job at being mental then Dustin Hoffman did. But, her big scene is about a woman who loved her man and after he molested Precious, left. She can't comprehend that it's not Precious's fault.

  7. I still don't get how any of this is "hopeful." She has HIV, two children, no home, no education, no money? You stood up to your mother, congrats.! Here's a musical montage for your troubles?