Synopsis: Pregnant by her father, for the second time, Precious sees a chance to turn her life around when she is given the opportunity to go to an alternative school; beginning her journey from oppression to self-determination.
Release Date: November 6, 2009 MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feeling down about your life? Do you wonder why everything seems to happen to you? Well it doesn’t and your life is not that bad. Don’t believe me – see this movie. Chronicling about two years in the life of a Black teenager in the New York City ghetto this film delivers a story that is all too cliche but heartbreakingly true. Precious, as she is aptly nicknamed, tells her story in the movie and it is all but unbelievable. Sexually abused her entire life by her father, mother and sister to her children, illiterate, mentally and physically abused by her mother, poverty-stricken, and with absolutely zero self esteem (and one more thing that you will just have to witness to believe – it is that bad). This is Precious. As you watch her journey from victim to survivor it is uplifting but never seems to get passed the showcasing of every horrible act or roadblock she encountered in these brief two years. The film is so determined to make you empathetic. To make you feel bad so you can inevitably feel a ray of hope at the end that it forgets to find a decent balance.
Every time you think it may improve it drags you back into the deep dark depressing void.
While I would like to give praise to all of the actors in this film, since everyone was very good, there is only one that really makes an impression. This one performance will surely burn a memory into your brain for eons to come; it is that of Mo’Nique as Mary, Precious’ mother. She is pure evil. A regular Jekyl and Hyde personality. Where her Hyde is never meek but just milder than her Jekyl. You hate her, for all the ways she abuses Precious and the system. It is with utter amazement that you watch her insane cruelty. To be someone so full of hatred and bitterness without flinching for a second is unfathomable. When you think there may be some good somewhere in there, as she is very convincing when she turns on the charm, in a mere second she turns back into the malicious woman we have grown to abhor. This character still haunts me, days after watching the film. To know that someone like this exists(ed) in the World disgusts me as it will you. This feeling from a viewer is only possible because of the high caliber performance Mo’Nique has given. We definitely have a new Mommy Dearest for a new century in film history.
Please, for the love of filmmaking, do not zoom in or out again! Yes, that is what I was thinking time and time again during the movie. Whenever a close-up or extreme close-up was used I held my breath. More of than not my prayers went unanswered. The zooms in and out of the close-ups are disgraceful. Rough or choppy cannot even begin to describe them. I tried to think if this was intentional but found it impossible. I am grateful most of the rest of the film was shot well, even if on a very independent aesthetic level.
Cast and Crew
- Director(s): Lee Daniels
- Producer(s): Geoffrey FletcherMo’Nique (Mary)
- Screenwriter(s): Gabourey ‘Gabby’ Sidibe (Clareece ‘Precious’ Jones)Paula Patton (Ms. Rain)Mariah Carey (Mrs. Weiss)
- Story: Lenny Kravitz (John)
- Cast: Sherri Shepherd (Cornrows) Joe KlotzAndrew DunnRoshelle Berliner
- Editor(s): Marina Draghici
- Cinematographer: Mario Grigorov
- Production Designer(s):
- Costume Designer:
- Casting Director(s): LOOK! Effects
- Music Score:
- Music Performed By:
- Country Of Origin: USA