User Score
8.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 181 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 17 out of 181
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  1. AntonioB
    Dec 21, 2009
    10
    This movie was just purely amazing, I didn't expect to be that good because usually movies that hyped up like this one was aren't that good, but movie was just great. I did expect a little more screen time from Mariah Carey's character Ms. Weiss, but her performance was really good and Gabourey Sidebeh was great as Precious and of course Mo'Nique was unbelievable as This movie was just purely amazing, I didn't expect to be that good because usually movies that hyped up like this one was aren't that good, but movie was just great. I did expect a little more screen time from Mariah Carey's character Ms. Weiss, but her performance was really good and Gabourey Sidebeh was great as Precious and of course Mo'Nique was unbelievable as Mary, I mean to see her go from The Parkers, The Queens of Comedy and small supporting roles in movies to this is just pure talent. She was great in Domino and Shadwboxer, but she had small supporting roles, and in this movie she had a supporting role, but she completely stole the movie and every scene she was in which is why I know she will the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress and Gabby will definitely get nominated for Best Actress Expand
  2. Aug 13, 2010
    8
    Precious is definitely a good film. Excellent performances by literally everyone in the cast, especially Mo'Nique. It has a heart-wrenching story and, well, it definitely makes one think. It all works, but somehow it just isn't fully what I've expected, there is a little thing that would make this film excellent... this way it's "just" a great film. I'd recommend it, for sure.
  3. EvinC
    Jan 2, 2010
    7
    Alright. The film kind of dragged on as i was waiting for something great. The best thing about the film are the actors Mo'Nique and Carey.
  4. WilsonS
    Dec 6, 2009
    9
    This is a GREAT movie with some terrifically dramatic but nicely understated performances. Not kid-friendly, that's for sure. Mariah Carey is perfectly cast.
  5. EggyG.
    Feb 15, 2010
    8
    This movie always throw surprise moments...just like real life. Solid performance from all casts...including very surprisingly Mariah Carey. This movie can be very depressing...just had to prepare the right mood or will get overwhelmed.
  6. Feb 12, 2013
    10
    Precious is a terrific movie, so visceral and brutally real that will touch your heart. Every detail is perfectly calculated to demonstrate what life truly is; from what they eat to the appearance of the mother. It is very interesting the dynamic of the film, because the protagonist lives with every single problem that a human could have, which by the way gather all the complicated issuesPrecious is a terrific movie, so visceral and brutally real that will touch your heart. Every detail is perfectly calculated to demonstrate what life truly is; from what they eat to the appearance of the mother. It is very interesting the dynamic of the film, because the protagonist lives with every single problem that a human could have, which by the way gather all the complicated issues of contemporary society; but continue living only escaping from the reality, to a world where she is famous, everybody loves her, with the perfect boyfriend and a careful and lovely mother. Because of that the picture is constructed within three worlds, the horrible present (the movie), the repressed past (in flashbacks) and the fantastic other reality (breaking the flashbacks). That is why especial technical aspects are used to narrate the story, like slow motion shots, changes in illumination and audio-visual counterpoint (when in a fight it sounds quiet music). Another captivating thing is the evolution of the protagonist in the story, showing that is possible to take every little thing that happen to you, without mattering if is either good or bad, and learn something about it, because things happen for a reason. Lee Daniels definitely made a masterpiece, the screenplay is astonishing and the performance of the cast is amazing. I mean Gabourey Sidibe is awesome, but MoNique is heartbreaking, one of the best performances I ever seen in my life. Life is hard, life is short, life is painful, but because everything is a gift from the universe, life is precious. Expand
  7. Oct 15, 2011
    8
    The Oscar-winning movie "Precious" is slow paced with a quiet tone of despair. There is really no solution to its pessimistic view throughout the movie, but its Mo'Nique (the Oscar Best Actress Winner) who provides faith and light to the audience throughout the movie.
  8. Sep 27, 2010
    10
    Very great film.. inspiring and so natural.. as per the title itself, based on a true story... was able to show that it is and it is not a just a film.. Carey acted well.. Natural and great.. Monique is very good..
  9. NickP
    Dec 2, 2009
    10
    At first i was not sure, i thought it was yet another low budget stereotypical film which targeted people who like over dramatic films. I was wrong though, dead wrong. Mo"nique was amazing and worth watching for her alone. At first you hate her and by the end you just feel sorry for her (role). Gabby is great, really good performance although i wish she spoke more clear but that was also At first i was not sure, i thought it was yet another low budget stereotypical film which targeted people who like over dramatic films. I was wrong though, dead wrong. Mo"nique was amazing and worth watching for her alone. At first you hate her and by the end you just feel sorry for her (role). Gabby is great, really good performance although i wish she spoke more clear but that was also part of the role. Only slight disappointment for me was Mariah Carey, not cause she was not good but cause she was not nearly as good as all the hype made me believe. Overall though: great movie, great actors -all of them. Expand
  10. KennethS.
    Feb 15, 2010
    10
    Mo'nique is fantastic as Precious' abusive, raging mother, and Gabourey Sidibe is great at showing Precious' emotion. There are many poignant, painful moments during the film, and even if, by the end of the film, you might feel exhausted, you'll definitely feel moved.
  11. TanyaG.
    Feb 9, 2010
    10
    Amazing movie! If you have ever been through similar in your life this movie is a must. This really shows the courage some women have to get out.
  12. LindaM
    Nov 22, 2009
    10
    The film is honest and intelligent and well filmed and edited. What more can one ask of any film?
  13. EricS.
    Nov 8, 2009
    10
    I don't think I've ever seen anything quite like it. It's a life changer.
  14. LucasM.
    Jan 18, 2010
    10
    Flawless. Touching.
  15. SallyM
    Jan 2, 2010
    10
    The movie depicts the ugly reality existing behind so many closed doors. The performances by all actors are superb. Gabourey "Gabby" Sidibe does an incredible job of digging into the heart, but it's Mo'Nique's performance that truly gets to the soul of the viewer. She's wickedly despicable, yet sadly pathetic at the same time. When an actor can bring out that kind of The movie depicts the ugly reality existing behind so many closed doors. The performances by all actors are superb. Gabourey "Gabby" Sidibe does an incredible job of digging into the heart, but it's Mo'Nique's performance that truly gets to the soul of the viewer. She's wickedly despicable, yet sadly pathetic at the same time. When an actor can bring out that kind of emotion, that's what I call Oscar material. Definitely a moving movie! Expand
  16. TonyB
    Feb 10, 2010
    10
    2009's best, as far as I'm concerned...not a missed beat or a false note anywhere...the performances are flawless.
  17. ChrisP
    Nov 17, 2009
    9
    "Precious", is an extremely powerful, emotional, and uplifting film. It is one of the year's very best films. I have seen it twice now, and it's a film that gets better, each time you watch it. Oscar is written all over this film.
  18. BillyS
    Nov 20, 2009
    9
    I still can't figure out how I sat through so much sorrow and so much pity and still walked out of the theatre feeling so positively touched. Oscar is surely going to shine on Precious next year. Gabourey Sidibe is amazing in her film debut, Mo'Nique is simply brilliant and who knew Mariah Carey could be unrecognizable and a good actress. It's a shame the Academy I still can't figure out how I sat through so much sorrow and so much pity and still walked out of the theatre feeling so positively touched. Oscar is surely going to shine on Precious next year. Gabourey Sidibe is amazing in her film debut, Mo'Nique is simply brilliant and who knew Mariah Carey could be unrecognizable and a good actress. It's a shame the Academy didn't increase its acting categories to ten because everyone in this cast is good enough for a nomination. Expand
  19. BillB
    Nov 22, 2009
    9
    Harrowing but rewarding.
  20. SistaK
    Nov 9, 2009
    10
    Loved IT! Oscars for Mo'nique & Gabby!
  21. BruceN
    Dec 13, 2009
    9
    There are so many ways this film could not have worked. I was so ready to be turned off that like a horror flik I kept waiting for that really bad scene to jump out at me. Instead I was drawn, maybe pulled but not bullied by performers who played their character with care to both the strong and subtle points of their role. The human that plays hide and seek out of Precious's There are so many ways this film could not have worked. I was so ready to be turned off that like a horror flik I kept waiting for that really bad scene to jump out at me. Instead I was drawn, maybe pulled but not bullied by performers who played their character with care to both the strong and subtle points of their role. The human that plays hide and seek out of Precious's slit-eyed mask and the evil cum victim that roars and cries out of the mother's visage are riveting. Mom will win hands down best supporting actress. Expand
  22. ChadS
    Dec 4, 2009
    7
    The sight of a morbidly obese girl who runs out of a chicken joint with a ten-piece bucket without paying for it, practically courts laughter, and for some moviegoers, who prey on the weak, just may hoot, just may holler. "Precious" is about a teacher trying to help a girl reclaim her name from an abusive mother. For now, let's call her Clareece, and this child of rape, undoubtedly, The sight of a morbidly obese girl who runs out of a chicken joint with a ten-piece bucket without paying for it, practically courts laughter, and for some moviegoers, who prey on the weak, just may hoot, just may holler. "Precious" is about a teacher trying to help a girl reclaim her name from an abusive mother. For now, let's call her Clareece, and this child of rape, undoubtedly, stands out, but in the worst possible way. At school, her first day at an alternative school, Clareece disposes of the fried poultry container in the trash: cause for laughter follows. Breasts, thighs, drumsticks, wings. She ate it all. The moviegoer can see the gristle around her lips. And when Clareece takes a seat beneath a poster that promotes self-esteem, she throws up: cause for more laughter follows, and perhaps, a little exasperation. "Precious: Based on the Novel by Sapphire" has a self-awareness about audience perception as it pertains to its protagonist. It knows that moviegoers are more accustomed to trim and fit white girls than the dark-skinned girth of Gabourey Sidibe, and that includes the titular character herself, which this twenty-six-year-old newcomer portrays. In her bedroom, Clareece looks into the mirror and sees white too. She sees Carrie White at the prom. Let me explain. Inexplicably, late in "Precious", Joanna(Yosha Roquemore) starts to laugh at the blood on her classmate and the blanket that's wrapped around the baby, following the girl's domestic dispute with her mother Mary(Monique). (Things fly around, but here, it's not telekinesis.) It's the same sort of cruel laughter that befalls the Sissy Spacek character in the 1976 Brian DePalma classic, after John Travolta drenches the prom queen with pig blood. (Incidentally, Mary forces her daughter to eat some poorly prepared pigs' feet.) By the end of the movie, the mother's tyranny over her daughter is over, and the teacher wins. It's a bittersweet victory. While Clareece redefines Mary's baby nickname for her on the terms of this newly emancipated woman, she learns how life itself is precious, and for her, fleeting. Expand
  23. CherylF
    Nov 16, 2009
    10
    This movie is about life. It's not about black or white; people live like this day in, day out. It is empowering to those who feel oppressed that their is hope.
  24. DeborahT
    Nov 17, 2009
    10
    Saw this at Sundance and was blown away - it is painful to watch but very powerful and is a must see.
  25. BobK
    Nov 17, 2009
    8
    Moderately depressing, but similar situations are probably much worse in real life.
  26. ColleenB
    Nov 22, 2009
    9
    Fabulous movie. Enjoyed the cinematography, story, and the outstanding cast. Mo'Nique deserves an Oscar nomination!
  27. DomoR
    Nov 24, 2009
    10
    I refuse to be one of those TV people on stations you don't watch and fill this comment with hyperbolic crap that don't mean a thing up against what's on the screen. I'll just say this: I loved this movie! There, I said it; you wanna dissect it? What, you a scientist now?
  28. Seanismyname
    Nov 26, 2009
    8
    Excellent movie. The actors were ALL convincing and unaffected. The story managed to engage the viewer's sympathy without being sentimental, without pulling punches. It's refreshing to know that good films are still being made.
  29. BeckyW
    Nov 28, 2009
    9
    Mo'nique was absolutely amazing!! All the actors were very good, but Mo'nique stood out. As a high school level school psychologist, I can tell you that there is more than one Precious every year at my school. This movie broke my heart, not for this Precious who made it OK, but for every Precious I have known who didn't.
  30. AdamS
    Nov 29, 2009
    10
    A movie all should see. It was hard to watch, but I couldn't take my eyes away.
  31. BobG
    Dec 12, 2009
    10
    From the depths to the heights of human experience, this film rides an emotional roller coaster through the life of Precious and thoses around her. Superbly acted and cast, it is a tale worthy of deep contemplation of the realities of american life and the legacy of our past.
  32. AutumnM.
    Dec 14, 2009
    10
    Loved it. Almost broke down when it said "For Precious Girls Everywhere" or something like that...
  33. KariL.
    Dec 21, 2009
    10
    One of the best films I've seen in a long time. A gritty, yet moving story of rich character development. You get to know these people, and see how a person is shaped and molded by external circumstances. Yet there's something more, we get to see that even in the most hellish of circumstances, at least in some people, there's a light, a soul that is capable of moving beyond One of the best films I've seen in a long time. A gritty, yet moving story of rich character development. You get to know these people, and see how a person is shaped and molded by external circumstances. Yet there's something more, we get to see that even in the most hellish of circumstances, at least in some people, there's a light, a soul that is capable of moving beyond deadly and dangerous oppression and abuse. How even the littlest bit of encouragement can light a spark. Expand
  34. SamK
    Dec 4, 2009
    10
    A powerful movie that doesn't sugar-coat the horrors of life. Amazing performances and an anti-hollywood ending make this one of the best movies of the year.
  35. Jonah
    Nov 17, 2009
    9
    It's interesting that all the critics who hated the film were New York critics. All the hype seems to have kept them from viewing the film with any objectivity.
  36. A-Train
    Nov 22, 2009
    10
    This is a "perfect" movie. No dialogue is wasted. Nothing is force-fed to you. It doesn't slow down at all. Nothing is predictable. All of the acting is 100% flawless. I did not feel I was watching a movie. Being a New Yorker, who grew up in the 80's and is familiar with street life, this movie is true to form. These characters are real. I am so impressed by this movie. I am This is a "perfect" movie. No dialogue is wasted. Nothing is force-fed to you. It doesn't slow down at all. Nothing is predictable. All of the acting is 100% flawless. I did not feel I was watching a movie. Being a New Yorker, who grew up in the 80's and is familiar with street life, this movie is true to form. These characters are real. I am so impressed by this movie. I am proud of those who made it. It is a work of art. Expand
  37. LindaC
    Dec 22, 2009
    10
    The reality the book/film depict are at the most dark end of human depravity. The gentleness of the soul of Precious that is sustained and triumphs through the unimaginable abuse she experienced as portrayed by Gabourey is what an Oscar should be for and granted far better than the overall quality of performance which Jennifer Hudson delivered in Dreamgirls. I still wonder to this day why The reality the book/film depict are at the most dark end of human depravity. The gentleness of the soul of Precious that is sustained and triumphs through the unimaginable abuse she experienced as portrayed by Gabourey is what an Oscar should be for and granted far better than the overall quality of performance which Jennifer Hudson delivered in Dreamgirls. I still wonder to this day why she was even nominated, let alone won. If Gabourey does not win the Oscar then plainly the real [purely political] meaning and manuvering behind the Oscar organization is revealed. Expand
  38. CazatuzBlah
    Dec 29, 2009
    9
    I thought the movie was really good, Monique did great, So good thats it is as if Monique was showing us how to Act & giving us all some acting tips. lol The only negative is It could have had more gruesome Monique scenes & less of some of the other settings.
  39. Aug 27, 2010
    9
    'Precious' is a tough movie that handles a myriad of tough situations, all focused on the single tragic protagonist, Precious. Though the movie easily could have been a weep-fest that begs for sympathy, director Lee Daniels chooses to handle every scene and situation with a delicacy that manages to never exploit the characters on screen.
  40. Jan 16, 2011
    8
    i was really exhausted when the movie ended. it's a well scripted drama with lot of swearing, and Monique did a great job, i guess. but i don't know. i was really tired. it's a very depressing movie...
  41. Dec 5, 2010
    9
    This movie shows how people can understand the reality of their situation (good or bad) thanks to the culture which make people critic and independent, a must, my favourite of 2010.
  42. Dec 15, 2010
    7
    Aspiring work.. the story's told the right way, the acting is great, but in the end, you have an empty feeling in your gut that makes you miss your money.
  43. Feb 4, 2012
    10
    Best African American movie hands down. So inspiring. So emotional. The characters are full of life. Every little detail fits amazing. Not really that slow like people say it is. Precious it's so full of surprises. A must see for drama fans.
  44. Aug 19, 2012
    9
    A great movie, perfect, gets to be shocking and performance of the cast is excellent, an exceptional film that wins who is watching from beginning to end, even those who do not like this kind of movie could end up captivating.
  45. Nov 13, 2011
    10
    Impressively acted(especially Gabourey Sidibe and Mo'Nique), realistically directed and well scripted. Precious is a very inspirational Oscar contender. 4/4 stars.
  46. Aug 24, 2014
    9
    Horror does not always come in the form of zombies, slashers and ghost houses... it, unfortunately, is often real life. This film reveals the harsh realities of an unlucky girl amidst unnecessary terror. Mo'Nique gives us one of the most fearsome villains ever to grace the screen.
  47. Sep 2, 2012
    7
    This was a pretty intense film. Not the most exciting or original storyline, but it still managed to be gripping and very well acted. Monique gave the performance of her life.
  48. Feb 24, 2013
    7
    Good film! Powerful and touching at times. Mo'Nique received a lot of praise for her performance here and it's for a good reason; she gives a really great performance. I also loved Paula Patton and Mariah Carey's performances. Overall a solid film about the hardships in life. Maybe a little overrated, but still good. I loved the classroom scenes.
  49. Jun 13, 2013
    8
    precious is my favorite drama of 2009,
    and one of the best stories on a drama movie,
    the movie is pretty hard to watch, but the great performances make it so believable, Gabourey Sidibe performances was so good that it turned out from the actress who nobody knew to an Oscar-first-role nominee. her performances was over-the-top that it's actually make you feel that this movie is about
    precious is my favorite drama of 2009,
    and one of the best stories on a drama movie,
    the movie is pretty hard to watch, but the great performances make it so believable,
    Gabourey Sidibe performances was so good that it turned out from the actress who nobody knew to an Oscar-first-role nominee.
    her performances was over-the-top that it's actually make you feel that this movie is about her real life, it's like eminem in 8-mile,
    and not just her,Mo'Nique performances was top-notch, even Mariah Carey blow you away with her acting,waw.
    the story give you a little piece of hope at the end which is the best part,
    but over-all a fantastic drama and one of my favorite.
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  50. Jun 18, 2013
    8
    A great film, but one of the toughest films to watch. A devastating look at abuse and how someone can imagine the possibilities of a glamorous lifestyle to try to just make it through the day.
  51. Jul 5, 2013
    8
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. When you read about the theme of this film, an obese teenage girl, illiterate, constantly abused physically and emotionally by her mother, and pregnant with her second child after being raped (again) by her father, you think "heavy melodrama". This film is by no means "light" but it's far from being a melodrama. This story feels "real", even for us who have never experienced what Precious calls everyday life, and this is partially to do with the excellent casting.
    Everyone in this film does a marvellous job, but the person that really excelled, in my opinion, was Mo'Nique; she plays a horrible creature which you have just gotta hate, and she nailed the role of the abusive, angry, lazy and jealous mother, right down to the part where she admits everything she did was because she wanted to be loved. No, you don't get to feel sorry for her, that's the brilliance of this performance. What you do realise is that this terrible transformation can happen to anyone, and that's the scary part.
    The only reason I didn't give this film a higher score was because I found it to bit a too slow-paced for my liking. As for the ending, it was surprisingly uplifting and left you with a sense of optimism.
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  52. Sep 26, 2014
    10
    from Tyler Perry and Oprah Winfrey presents one of the most over rated films of their career including director lee daniels. Lee Daniels obviously a good , talented empathy for a director he has a good cast , good shots in the movie , good crew and producers Tyler Perry , Oprah Winfrey the three of them have talent to combine something so powerful it obviously went in the right directionfrom Tyler Perry and Oprah Winfrey presents one of the most over rated films of their career including director lee daniels. Lee Daniels obviously a good , talented empathy for a director he has a good cast , good shots in the movie , good crew and producers Tyler Perry , Oprah Winfrey the three of them have talent to combine something so powerful it obviously went in the right direction ( as dorthy would call a trip down the yellow brick road). Also Starring Gabourey sidibe , MoNique , Paula Patton and Mariah Carey. These people are to be admire and love for the rest of their life for playing the parts of the brave people also a good novel by Sapphire . Grade A+ Expand
  53. Jun 16, 2015
    8
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Precious is precious, but she doesn't know it. How could she, after being abused by her own family members for so long? Her struggles are absolutely justified and we really see how. All she wants is to be white and skinny – neither of which she is. Eventually Precious needs help and attends this alternative school. It's good for her and has people that are genuinely kind, much more so than the people that were in her life before.

    Precious is pregnant with her second child. She's never had a boyfriend. She gets raped by her own father. It's absolutely heartbreaking that people are disgusted with her for being pregnant instead of getting her help. When Precious gets in situations that are really horrible and traumatizing, she spaces out into a situation where she's amazing and glamorous and beautiful. She just needs help bringing that part of her out, which is something that her teacher Ms. Rain helps with. She has unwavering patience and kindness to these kids that may not have any other positive influences in their lives excpet for her.

    The only thing that Precious's family seems to care about is getting their welfare. Not about her baby with down syndrome, not about Abdul. The social worker even checks in on them but it's all a facçade, but this 17 year-old girl can't do anything about it. "Why people that barely know me should be nicer to me than my mother and father?" It's the truth. Her teacher helps her get her life back together after fleeing her home in fear, and she's right, her teacher hardly knows her. It's not right but it's real. Precious has had a very hard life, but through the help of people not in her family and her determination, she can fight through the HIV and get an education with her kids. I believe in her.
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Metascore
79

Generally favorable reviews - based on 36 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 32 out of 36
  2. Negative: 1 out of 36
  1. Reviewed by: Nick Antosca
    80
    Shot in the manner of a grueling horror picture, with jittery edits to half-remembered traumas and glistening close-ups on the faces of monsters.
  2. Reviewed by: Duane Byrge
    80
    As Precious, Sidibe is superb, allowing us to see the inner warmth and beauty of a young woman who, to her world's cruel eyes, might seem monstrous.
  3. Reviewed by: John Anderson
    80
    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.