This won two oscars!?
Ok, let me begin by saying that I currently have some form of plague and as a consiquence I am twice as irritable as usual so I apologise if I'm a little harsh with this film but, two oscars? Really? Let's start with the good. The actress playing Precious is very good for a non professional, but she's not amazing. The writing is powerful but sloppy on some plot points, and the cinematography is great when it knows what it's trying to be. The actress playing the mother emotes brilliantly and the dialogue of the other alternative school children is entertaining. Now on to the rest...
The editing at times is just atrocious, I don't know what it's trying to do but whatever it is it's not doing it well. The dream/imagination sequences have no visible indication that they are in fact imaginary. Looking back I don't think half the scenes were supposed to be real, but I didn't see that at the time because they're cut together so similarly. The parts that were supposed to be dream sequences were cut to and filtered the same way as the rest and it just serves to confuse the plot. The main actress does a good job for her first time but an Oscar winning performance this is certainly not. Eighty percent of the lines are mumbled even when there's no conceivable reason for them to be. I know she's meant to be an introvert but introverts still emote and pull other faces other than Gary Coleman's "whatchu talkin' 'bout" face. The one scene where she does emote is one of the most powerful in the film and for a moment it looks like I might actually feel some genuine empathy for the character, but then a teacher cuts in with some pretentious dialogue and her face resumes.
In terms of the writing and dialogue they both swing wildly from extremely powerful to downright laughable. The character of precious is written to be a very tragic and pitiful character the audience is supposed to relate to in some way, and at some points she's written well like that. The scenes with the mother are tense and powerful and as Precious' story unfolds you do start to feel empathetic towards her, right up until she walks out the door of the apartment. Then she turns into a bland, unlikeable annoyance who's only purpose is to drive the more interesting dialogue of others. And without wishing to spoil, many plot points are just thrown away with little explaination. The whole HIV/AIDS plot point goes nowhere after the emotional outburst, the little girl precious sometimes comes into contact with outside the apartment is an utterly pointless character, and the final scene between precious and her mum just serves to tell us things we already know with no added depth.
I really, really do not understand how this film won two academy awards. It was entertaining and at points it was emotional but I really don't understand the critical acclaim? I understood the story and I know what I was supposed to be feeling but I just didn't get the emotional rollercoaster I was promised. Maybe I'm just heartless or maybe it is just because I'm ill but I just don't see it. It was ok. That's all, it was just ok.