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Wednesday, July 28, 2010


I Love film; it is a most remarkable medium. One of my dreams has always been to write something great and see it interpreted by other artists on film. Everything I write I visualize as such... set to the greatest soundtrack ever (in my humble opinion).

Tonight... I have been completely humbled by a visual that shredded my heartstrings and left me in gaping awe. "Precious (2009)," Directed by Lee Daniels, Screenplay Written by Geoffrey Fletcher, based on the novel "Push," by Sapphire is nothing short of a cinematic masterpiece, braided with social commentary and viscous, sanguine realism. WOW! It has been a very long time since I have been so smitten with a film like this; I had to share it with you, because this film needs to be experienced. I realize that the it is old news as far as awards and the red carpet is concerned, but I have never been one to be contemporary in my film choices; I don't have a television by choice. Dark Ages...
I know. No comment.

As far as the film is concerned... PLEASE rent it, order it, download it ... something. I am at a loss for words other than these; The brutal reality of this images in this masterpiece are necessary to understand truth, humanity, and compassion. "Precious" is an impeccable example of how we must travel to the darkest, most evil depths in order to truly appreciate innate goodness. There is a balance. There is hope.

The following excerpt is from a review by writer John Anderson of "Variety Magazine" online edition, January 18, 2009. it is the best I've read:

Precious: Based on the Novel 'Push' by Sapphire

Director Lee Daniels brings to life a harrowing tale of abuse in 'Push: Based on a Novel by Sapphire,' which unspooled at Sundance.

Claireece "Precious" Jones - Gabourey "Gabby" Sidibe
Mary - Mo'Nique
Ms. Rain - Paula Patton
Nurse John - Lenny Kravitz
Ms. Weiss - Mariah Carey
Cornrows - Sherri Shepherd

"An urban nightmare with a surfeit of soul, “Precious: Based on the Novel 'Push' by Sapphire” is like a diamond -- clear, bright, but oh so hard. To simply call it harrowing or unsparing doesn’t quite cut it; “Precious” is also courageous and uncompromising, a shaken cocktail of debasement and elation, despair and hope. Everyone involved deserves credit for creating a movie so dangerous, problematic and ultimately elevating. Marketing will be a problem because the shorthand description is so unpalatable. But this is, for all its scorched-earth emotion, a film to be loved.

Adapted by Damien Paul from the work by one-time Harlem teacher and poet Sapphire, the pic tells the story of Claireece “Precious” Jones (newcomer Gabourey “Gabby” Sidibe), a character who might have sprung from the collective brain of Charles Dickens, Toni Morrison and whoever carved the heads on Easter Island. With a jutting jaw and barely visible eyes, Claireece’s face is a monument to the racial crimes of the past 400 years (that this miserable child of 16 can look in the mirror and fantasize seeing a blonde white girl is pungent shorthand for a raft of evils).

Mute and mountainous, a stolid outsider who can barely read, Claireece is pregnant -- again -- by her father and on the verge of being kicked out of school. She’s also cruelly oppressed by her mother, Mary (Mo’Nique), whose daily routine consists of watching daytime TV, smoking cigarettes and treating her daughter like a slave (any historical parallels are not an accident). The situation is so dire that you almost have to laugh -- the way you might laugh, nervously, during the darkest moments of a horror movie.

“Precious” is a horror movie, of course, and Mary is a monster, whose one glimmer of humanity -- which Mo’Nique, who is utterly brilliant, reveals in a tour de force soliloquy at the finale -- only makes her more horrible.

Second-time helmer Daniels (“Shadowboxer”) demonstrates a remarkable, balletic ability to juggle emotional extremes. Claireece has her fantasies, and their visualizations -- of the girl as satin-clad pop star, movie star or supermodel -- work as relief valves. They’re never funny, but they do humanize a character who has been reduced, by those who are supposed to love her, to a piece of meat, and who presents herself to the world as a very different, far less attractive creature than the Claireece we hear in voiceover.

Daniels never allows the film, however gothic and nightmarish, to lose its footing in the real world, and that world includes a certain amount of hope: Despite her mother’s hostility, Claireece enrolls in an alternative school where a teacher named Blu Rain (Paula Patton) prepares young women for their GEDs. Patton is terrific, beautiful but carrying the weight of the world in her eyes. And Claireece’s classmates, with their street-smart banter, give the film some needed levity.

Among the many delightful surprises in the film is Mariah Carey, who is pitch-perfect as a welfare counselor and serves as this demi-tragedy’s Greek chorus. It’s possible that many viewers won’t recognize her until the final credits, but like so many things about “Precious,” the performance is disarming."

Download of the Day... and the only album to do this subject matter and film with such depth any justice :




Please check out "Push" by Sapphire in the top right margin, along with the Song of the Day "Hurt" by Johnny Cash (originally by NIN)

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