Thursday, November 19, 2009

Unintentionally Hilarious Trailer Quote Roundup

Welcome, esteemed members of the board. I hope your lunches were up to snuff. *wait for polite laughter* Excellent. Now, if you'll open your itineraries and turn to page four there should be an outline of the following presentation. No, this doesn't mean you can sleep through it, *pause for chuckles* but it can be used as a quick reference if information is moving too fast, or you catch yourself daydreaming. *allow time for uproarious and unceasing applause* 

Precious: Based on the Novel PUSH by Sapphire

Our first bulletpoint covers a trailer many of your children should be familiar with. The quote, which can be found 26 seconds in, is half-grunted half-shouted by Precious' mother Mary (Mo'Nique) and reads:

"You're a dummy. Don't nobody want you, don't nobody need you. School ain't gonna help none. Take your ass down to the welfare!"

Harsh words. Mean, cruel, and uttered with fiery distain at her daughter. In the right hands this quote could send an audience into fits of sympathy for poor Precious. Unfortunately for there are a few variables preventing it from carrying any impact beyond the chuckles it induced. 

1) The line comes out of Mo'Nique's mouth. Mo'Nique the comedian. There's unconventional casting, and then there's casting Mo'Nique as an abusive parent. Borderline stupid casting, judging from every word she says through the trailer. 

2) To a lit nerd broken English is funny. It just is. And when it's played straight, it can be hysterical. In this case the motivation behind the phrasing doesn't cover up how ridiculous the sentence really is. 

3) The somber yet motivational music it accompanies strips the entire trailer of credibility. It'd have been nice if the acting was strong enough to create a tone for the movie, but it wasn't, so a tinkling, swelling song is used to aid Mo'Nique's mission: make us understand Precious is living a tough life. 

Precious is a movie I'd like to avoid at all costs. All I have to do is stay away from theatres that force you to see movies you don't want to see. I'm in the clear, but I want it to be understood I do not want to see Precious ever. 

Trailers are precious nuggets to help us all prejudge a little easier, and a little safer. Cherish them.

 - Eric T. Voigt

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