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  • Writer's pictureRob Ervin

Don Reviews "The Color Purple"

It is well documented on my dislike of remakes or reboots: all I have to say is Red Dawn, Footloose, and The Karate Kid.  I am also not a fan of movies made into musicals, even ones that are meant to be that way like the High school Musical franchise.  I am not saying there are no good ones, but they are just not my thing.  Now, we have The Color Purple, which I have actually seen on stage, which is what this particular version is based on.


This version is directed by Blitz Bazawule (The Burial of Kojo) and stars Fantasia Barrino, Taraji P. Henson, Danielle Brooks, Colman Domingo, and Corey Hawkins.  This is the classic story of Celie (Barrino), who lives in Georgia during the early 1900s.  Forced to marry an abusive man named Mister (Domingo), forty years of her life are covered as she tries to survive him, be reunited with her sister, and so much more.


This does follow the basic plot of both the original film and the stage version, and it even clocks in at fifteen minutes shorter than its predecessor without any noticeable cuts of plot points or storylines.  Those who are fans of the original film should be satisfied in both its presentation and performances.  For me, the standout is with Brooks as Sofia, whose sassiness really comes across to sell that character and could find herself with some nominations for it.


I am going to be blunt here: the way this film is presented along with a Christmas Day release date, it feels like this is nothing but Oscar bait, which is also something I am not particularly a fan of.  The original film felt more powerful, taking on tough subjects at a time where they needed to be addressed and in a great way.  This one does get gritty, but carries a bit too much of a “happy go lucky” feel for me.  Some of the music added a good twist (especially for those who have not seen the stage version), but it was just too much for me to enjoy The Color Purple as a film. Is it as bad as the Red Dawn remake?  It isn’t, but it hasn’t helped change my feelings about remakes, so I will recommend it to be watched at home on cable or a streaming service.

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