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

Contactmusic 2017 Exclusive

New Movies

Life Movie Review

Life Movie Review

Like a mash-up of Alien and Gravity, this ripping sci-fi horror movie is very effective...

The Lost City of Z Movie Review

The Lost City of Z Movie Review

Based on a true story, it's the historical aspect of these events that holds the...

Chips Movie Review

Chips Movie Review

It's clear from the very start that this movie has little to do with the...

Beauty And The Beast Movie Review

Beauty And The Beast Movie Review

This remake of Disney's 1991 classic is remarkably faithful, using present-day digital animation effects to...

The Salesman Movie Review

The Salesman Movie Review

Iranian filmmaker Asghar Farhadi won his second Oscar with this astute drama which, like 2011's...

Get Out Movie Review

Get Out Movie Review

Leave it to a comedian to make one of the scariest movies in recent memory....

Personal Shopper Movie Review

Personal Shopper Movie Review

After winning a series of major awards for her role in Olivier Assayas' Clouds of...

Advertisement
Certain Women Movie Review

Certain Women Movie Review

In films like Wendy and Lucy and Meek's Cutoff, writer-director Kelly Reichardt has told sharply...

Kong: Skull Island Movie Review

Kong: Skull Island Movie Review

After the success of 2014's Godzilla reboot, the Warner Bros monsters get their own franchise,...

Viceroy's House Movie Review

Viceroy's House Movie Review

Filmmaker Gurinder Chada (Bend It Like Beckham) draws on her own family history to explore...

Trespass Against Us Movie Review

Trespass Against Us Movie Review

With an extra dose of attitude and energy, this Irish comedy-drama hits us like a...

Logan Movie Review

Logan Movie Review

Hugh Jackman returns to his signature role one last time (so he says), reuniting with...

Patriots Day Movie Review

Patriots Day Movie Review

The third time's a charm for Mark Wahlberg and director Peter Berg, who previously teamed...

A Cure for Wellness Movie Review

A Cure for Wellness Movie Review

It's no surprise that this creep-out horror thriller is packed with whizzy visual invention, since...

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.