Precious: Based on the Novel 'Push' by Sapphire

"Extraordinary"

Precious: Based on the Novel 'Push' by Sapphire Review


Beautifully written and directed, this raw and honest drama tells a story that cuts to the core of some extremely serious issues. It also features a terrific cast that adds a breath of fresh air even in the most wrenching scenes.

Claireece Jones (Sidibe), known as Precious, is a troubled 16-year-old pregnant with her second child. Even though she's good at maths, she can't read or write, so she's sent to an alternative school to work with the inventive and caring Ms Rain (Patton). But as she talks with her social worker (Carey), the realities of her life at home with her cruel mother (Mo'nique) become increasingly worrying. Can this new school offer her a chance to discover something good about herself and maybe begin to head in a positive direction?

This is not an easy film to watch, as it examines the horrific bigotry, injustice and parental abuse that infuse Precious' life and make it so difficult for her to see who she really is. Her pain she is simply mind-numbing, especially as it's often inflicted by the only person in the world who should love her. Sidibe offers a remarkably textured performance, letting us see Precious' inner turmoil and insecurities as well as the fierce intelligence and even confidence struggling to get out.

Meanwhile, Mo'Nique goes way against type as the literally soul-destroying woman who compounds her own paranoia with viciousness and bad decisions. This is a scary, hideous character, and Mo'Nique plays her without flinching, letting us see only the faintest glimpse of humanity. Carey and Kravitz are also effective (and almost unrecognisable) in key side roles. And Precious' five classmates (Andujar, Layne, Robinson, Roquemore and Zambrana) add moments of raucous hilarity and camaraderie.

Daniels directs with astute camerawork that draws out the grittiness with lurking shadows and glaring lights, while Precious' escapist fantasies are in lurid colour (plus one hilarious scene in black and white). But the film's real strength is in how it touches on potent issues from teen pregnancy to homophobia while exploring self-image in a positive, affirming way. At some point, we must find the strength and light within ourselves, both to help in our own lives and to reach out to others. Otherwise, are we actually human at all?



Facts and Figures

Box Office Worldwide: $62.4M

Budget: $10M

Production compaines: Smokewood Entertainment Group

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4.5 / 5

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer: , Gary Magness, Sarah Siegel-Magness

Starring: as Precious, as Mary, as Ms. Rain, as Mrs. Weiss, as Nurse John, as Cornrows, Stephanie Andujar as Rita, Chyna Layne as Rhonda, Amina Robinson as Jermaine, Xosha Roquemore as Joann, as Consuelo, Aunt Dot as Tootsie, Nealla Gordon as Mrs. Lichtenstien, as Social Worker, Barret Helms as Tom Cruise (as Barret Isaiah Mindell), Kimberly Russell as Katherine, as Mr. Wicher, Susan Taylor as Fairy Godmother, Kendall Toombs as Abdul, New Born, Alexander Toombs as Abdul, New Born, Cory Davis as Abdul, 9 Months, Rochelle McNaughton as AIDS Clerk

Also starring: ,

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

After the thunderous reception for J.J. Abrams' Episode VII: The Force Awakens two years ago,...

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Like the 2015 original, this comedy plays merrily with cliches to tell a silly story...

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

There's a somewhat contrived jauntiness to this blending of fact and fiction that may leave...

Ferdinand Movie Review

Ferdinand Movie Review

This animated comedy adventure is based on the beloved children's book, which was published in...

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Director Dave McCary makes a superb feature debut with this offbeat black comedy, which explores...

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

A dramatisation of the real-life clash between tennis icons Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs,...

Shot Caller Movie Review

Shot Caller Movie Review

There isn't much subtlety to this prison thriller, but it's edgy enough to hold the...

Advertisement
The Disaster Artist Movie Review

The Disaster Artist Movie Review

A hilariously outrageous story based on real events, this film recounts the making of the...

Stronger Movie Review

Stronger Movie Review

Based on a true story about the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, this looks like one...

Only the Brave Movie Review

Only the Brave Movie Review

Based on a genuinely moving true story, this film undercuts the realism by pushing its...

Wonder Movie Review

Wonder Movie Review

This film may be based on RJ Palacio's fictional bestseller, but it approaches its story...

Happy End  Movie Review

Happy End Movie Review

Austrian auteur Michael Haneke isn't known for his light touch, but rather for hard-hitting, award-winning...

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Seemingly from out of nowhere, this film generates perhaps the biggest smile of any movie...

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

A Victorian thriller with rather heavy echoes of Jack the Ripper, this film struggles to...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.