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Old 03-08-2010, 03:10 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by saef View Post
I read the novel "Push" years ago, when it first came out, as I was a grad student in a creative writing program (though not for fiction) & a lot of my fellow students were very excited about the first-person narration in this book. The writing changes & develops through the novel as Precious becomes more literate & self-aware. It's a tour-de-force of the first-person voice. A lot of young writers begin by writing coming-of-age books, so this book was very interesting to them on that count.

I do not recall anyone objecting to the book's content. There are a lot of well-respected coming-of-age novels & memoirs about women enduring sexual abuse or being forced to prematurely navigate the minefields of adult sexuality. It's just part of the literary landscape. A graduate writing program is the last place where people only look for escapism in their novels & movies.

After that, I kept hearing "Push" was "in development" & worried what would become of it. You know what movie people can do to books sometimes.

I went to see the finished film "Precious" in November, I think right around Thanksgiving. I brought my mother, who was interested because of Oprah's advocacy of the movie. We both loved it. Mo'nique was just brilliant. So was Gabby, who played Precious. They deserved their nominations. This was one of my favorite movies of 2009. A very "actorly" movie. And a New York movie from a period that just slightly predates my moving down here. How could I not love it?

Why would anyone not want to see it? It all depends on what you think the role of art & entertainment is in your life, and what functions you think they serve when they are at their best.

Me, I like being wrecked & shattered by something utterly brilliant. It's a safe way of being wrecked & shattered, as opposed to this happening in my actual life, with someone dying or being devastated by a true diaster. Movies are one of the safer places in the world to cry. You can walk out of a movie with a tear-stained face & it's okay, people understand, the way they do when you walk out of a wedding or a funeral with wet eyes. It's allowed.

Mo'nique was just brilliant. You can be a villain, in my eyes, but if you play it brilliantly & show us around the whole character, her motivation, her place in a chain of unmet need & abusiveness, then you deserve it. You don't always have to be an inspirational heroine to be a great artist.
Omg! you are so right!

When I think of Monique's role, yes, in some ways she was the villain, but also, she shows how women can be abused themselves and how they transfer that abuse to others. It seemed like something happened to monique's character to make her the way she is---remember when she was crying about being loved? Wow.....what happened to her to make her treat her child like that?
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