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The Color Purple: Film Essay

893 words - 4 pages

The Color Purple, a book written by Alice Walker, won critical acclaim and praise for the depth of its female characters. The novel focused on Celie, an abused and uneducated black woman who struggled for empowerment. The book grew popular worldwide, and was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 1983. As a result, a movie (by the same name) was released two years later. The movie received mixed reviews from different audiences. Even with all the positive reviews the movie received, there were many who were angered by the movie's portrayal of black men.The Color Purple is a book that really tugs on the reader's emotions. Celie experiences great tragedy throughout her life, but in spite of everything that has happened she learns to overcome the hurdles that are placed before her. As a teenager, Celie was sexually abused by her stepfather and became pregnant by him twice. The children were taken away at birth and she was forced to marry a stranger.During her marriage an ex-lover of her husband's came to stay with them. While they were together, Shug Avery made a tremendous impact on Celie's life. She taught Celie how to love, laugh, and live. Some parts of this novel are hard to read and understand because they are letters written by Celie (who was very uneducated) but Walker does a very good job letting the reader know what the characters are feeling. The novel itself is very mature, but the lessons one should get from reading it are very elementary.The movie follows what made the book successful: strong character development. Whoopi Goldberg and Oprah Winfrey played strong roles as Celie and Sofia. Danny Glover was magnificent, and the supporting cast did an equally impressive job. The plot digs deep into the events and the characters throughout, while never holding back a drop of emotion. Such substance keeps the audience guessing every future event and double checking every detail. Its layers of storylines keep the chain of events interesting. It proves that there's more to Celie's life than just her own trials. She changes many lives in a good way without realizing it.The book provided great insight into the characters' mindset, and the movie adds to this through visual means. The wardrobes and the setting were constructed wonderfully. Every detail looks like "The Color Purple" was actually filmed in the early 1900's. Its background offers a gloomy look into the characters' harsh lifestyles and the sad plot. This seems to have allowed the cast to express themselves deeper. Without it, the movie wouldn't have...

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