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Gabourey Sidibe , Mo'Nique , Lee Daniels    DVD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
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Precious + Secret Life Of Bees, The
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Not every movie can survive the kind of hype--multiple awards at Sundance and other festivals, rapturous reviews, the promise of Oscars to come--that greeted the release of Precious: Based on the Novel "Push" by Sapphire, but this extraordinary piece of work is more than up to the task. What's particularly notable about the film's success and acclaim is that in the beginning, at least, it presents one of the grimmest scenarios imaginable. The scene is Harlem, New York, in 1987. Teenager Clarisse Precious Jones (played by newcomer Gabourey Sibide in an absolutely fearless performance) is dirt poor, morbidly obese, semiliterate, and pregnant for the second time--both courtesy of her own father (the first baby was born with Down syndrome). Her home life is several levels below Hell, as her bitter, vengeful welfare mother, Mary (Mo'Nique, in a role that has generated legitimate Oscar® buzz), abuses her both physically and otherwise (telling Precious she should have aborted her is only the worst of a relentless flood of insults and vitriol). Yet somehow, the young woman still has hopes and dreams (depicted in a series of delightful fantasy sequences). She enrolls in an alternative school, where a young teacher (Paula Patton) takes her under her wing and even into her home, and visits a social worker (an excellent Mariah Carey; fellow pop star Lenny Kravitz is also effective as a male nurse) who further helps bring Precious out of the darkness. Incredibly, Precious's circumstances deteriorate even more before showing the slightest sign of improvement, and a climactic confrontation with her mother is one of the more wrenching scenes in recent memory. But against all odds, director Lee Daniels, screenwriter Geoffrey Fletcher (working from Sapphire's novel), and especially the wondrously affecting Sibide have managed to make Precious a film that will lift the viewer far higher up that one might ever have thought possible. --Sam Graham

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5.0 out of 5 stars Authentic and Hopeful Nov. 13 2010
By mocha
I just finished watching "Precious". I had known about the hype surrounding the film, but didn't really feel that I would be able to identify very well with a film about inner city youth. I had it all wrong. I didn't watch the movie; I lived through it. All of the ignorance, betrayal and abuse suffered by this 16 year old girl bursts forth like a flash of blinding light upon society's dirty secrets. Not another place or another time; this place and this time. Children suffering behind closed doors. In spite of the fact that the film is based on a novel, it all rings true. It's the authenticity that hurts so much. Precious did not know what it was like to be precious to anyone. She did not know about love or respect. Abuse at the hands of both parents began when she was only three years old. She was accustomed to the frequent beatings, demoralization, servitude, and the sexual abuse that resulted in two babies by her father. Dreams and fantasies had been her only means of escape. In spite of all the obstacles, Precious learns to read and write and, through this process, she learns to communicate. She begins to see things as they really are. She has friends for the first time, and she learns what it feels like to be safe and cared for. She notes the contrast between the life she had led and a kinder world she has glimpsed. She wants a better life for herself and her children and we know, by the end of the movie, that Precious is headed in that direction. This film reminds me of "Antwone Fisher". Both films effectively address the "slave mentality" of abuse that seems to perpetuate itself from generation to generation.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars C. Precious Jones Jan. 26 2013
By webbkat
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Touching film about a teenager in the 80's that is abused my her parents and is currently pregnant with her second child. She then goes to an alternative school which changes her life for the better.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Reviewing "Precious" April 12 2010
This is quite a powerful and brutal story of a very overweight and unhappy black young woman who was raped by her father, had two babies by him, and her mother is equally physically and verbally abusive. Despite all her unhappy home problems, she struggles through an alternative school and ends up coming out a different and better person in the end. Movie also contains swearing and violence, but is very true-to-life and "hides no details" of this young woman's unhappy existence.
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