Wednesday, November 11, 2009

precious wrecked me and i don't even know why

just saw Precious.
wow. this is not going to be an analysis - just my first impression. but still, wow.

the bus was packed with a bunch of african american teenage girls and i just thought it was because school was out and they were going to the mall. nope. they were all going to see Precious. the theater was full of these young girls. and the theater was pin-drop silent.

(movie going with teenagers in the audience? it's never pin-drop silent.)

i wouldn't say the movie craft is *brilliant* but it's still a movie that should be seen - with performances that should be recognized:

Mo'Nique (without a doubt, so far ahead of anything she's done before.)

Gabourey Sidibe (for an unknown to carry this whole thing is amazing - this could *not* have been done by a Hollywood actress. no way. they're too mannered, too practiced, too fake, too stiff, too soap opera-y. it would be the equivalent of watching Holly Hunter play a dysfunctional cop from Oklahoma - sinewy and wrong.

my one quibble: i know most of Precious' subjectivity lives in her head but it would have been great to see more of her inner life, her push, somehow made more visible, other than the fantasy sequences that allow her to disassociate from whatever blow she's just received. This is a point that someone else - PostBourgie? - made somewhere and i agree with it.)

the other girls in the ABC class (don't you recognize each of them?)

after i saw it, i walked around for a few blocks wanting somewhere to sit and cry but that would have just looked crazy. it made me look at my aunts, the girls i knew from my church, the girls i see on the bus - differently.

if you've seen it, or read the book (which i haven't) would love to hear your thoughts.


liza said...

Wow. I'm actually a little afraid of watching this movie. I'm anxious about the potential for exploitation, (involved mostly in the framing of black women's bodies)and I tend to avoid movies that seem to depend on brutalizing their audiences (I never did see _There Will Be Blood_ or _No Country For Old Men_). I trust your judgement, however, and if you didn't feel that's what was going on, then I'm more likely to go see it (if it comes to Redlands...) I read _Push_ way back when it first came out, and I was a soggy, angry mess for days afterwards. I loved it, but I'd be anxious about teaching it at my small, white, liberal arts college. I do want to read it again, because I'm fuzzy on a lot of the details. I remember images, the spelling, the overall emotional impression.

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