Last night I saw Precious : Based On a Novel By Sapphire at the VUE Leceister Square as part of the London Film Festival.
Precious was directed by Lee Daniels, who produced Monsters Ball, Shadowboxer & The Woodsman. The film is set in New York, 1987 and is about a rather large 16 year old black girl called Precious played by the actress Gabby Sabide, who I was lucky enough to meet after the film. Gabby is a lovely intelligent, sweet young lady who has accomplished a great deal in her first starring role. The film begins with Precious being kicked out of high school because she is pregnant with her second child! When Precious goes home to her mother played by Mo'nique who you might recognise from various comedy roles such as in The Parkers or The Queens Of Comedy, the audience immediately receive a glimpse of why Precious' home life is incredibly difficult to say the least. Her mother is not very nice.
Having been kicked out of school Precious attends an alternative school for young women, where she flourishes under the tuition and affection of her teacher Ms. Rain, played by the delectable Paula Patton, she is also helped along the way by her revelrous classmates, a male nurse played by Lenny Kravitz and a social worker played by Mariah Carey.
Whilst there are scenes of harrowing abuse there are also scenes of humor, hope and aspiration. The contrast creates an effective drama which emotionally involves the audience, Precious' themes of depression and isolation are universal.
Precious is about abuse, family, relationships, loneliness as well as silence and secrecy and being able to combat oppression and silence. This film is very important because disturbing, inspirational stories like this are unfortunately very common and it is not often that they are explored so well on the Big Screen with big stars such as Mariah & Lenny Kravitz supporting them. Precious also has a fair bit of Oprah money behind it, she executive produced it along side Tyler Perry who is a big fish in the pond of black filmmakers in the US, Oprah is also like some sort of saint or idol of worship, her tentacles of wealth & influence are forever stretching further & further across the earth, encompassing more & more in their powerful grasp.
Anyway, really good film, it is in general release in UK cinemas pretty soon, keep your eyes peeled, very well made film, oscar worthy performances, be sure to check it out!