Top 5000
Up 401 this week

The Color Purple (1985)

PG-13  |   |  Drama  |  7 February 1986 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.8/10 from 57,075 users  
Reviews: 191 user | 64 critic

A black Southern woman (Whoopi Goldberg) struggles to find her identity after suffering years of abuse from her father and others over 40 years.



(novel), (screenplay)
Watch Trailer
0Check in

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Video


TV Spotlight: The Top 10 Episodes of "The Walking Dead"

We've curated a list of the top 10 episodes of "The Walking Dead" according to the IMDb user ratings.

Read More

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 31 titles
created 12 Nov 2011
a list of 35 titles
created 19 Jun 2012
a list of 24 titles
created 18 Aug 2012
a list of 47 titles
created 16 May 2013
a list of 23 titles
created 03 Aug 2013

Related Items

Search for "The Color Purple" on

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: The Color Purple (1985)

The Color Purple (1985) on IMDb 7.8/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Color Purple.

User Polls

Nominated for 11 Oscars. Another 16 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama | History | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A young English boy struggles to survive under Japanese occupation during World War II.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Christian Bale, John Malkovich, Miranda Richardson
Amistad (1997)
Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

About a 1839 mutiny aboard a slave ship that is traveling towards the northeastern coast of America. Much of the story involves a court-room drama about the free man who led the revolt.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Djimon Hounsou, Matthew McConaughey, Anthony Hopkins
Always (1989)
Drama | Fantasy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A romantic adventure about a legendary pilot's passion for dare-devil firefighting and his girl.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Richard Dreyfuss, Holly Hunter, Brad Johnson
Drama | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

After an encounter with U.F.O.s, a line worker feels undeniably drawn to an isolated area in the wilderness where something spectacular is about to happen.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Richard Dreyfuss, François Truffaut, Teri Garr
Munich (2005)
Drama | History | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Based on the true story of the Black September aftermath, about the five men chosen to eliminate the ones responsible for that fateful day.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Eric Bana, Daniel Craig, Marie-Josée Croze
Adventure | Drama | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A highly advanced robotic boy longs to become "real" so that he can regain the love of his human mother.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Haley Joel Osment, Jude Law, Frances O'Connor
Adventure | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A woman attempts to reunite her family by helping her husband escape prison and together kidnapping their son. But things don't go as planned when they are forced to take a police hostage on the road.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Goldie Hawn, Ben Johnson, Michael Sacks
Duel (TV Movie 1971)
Action | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A business commuter is pursued and terrorized by a malevolent driver of a massive tractor-trailer.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Dennis Weaver, Jacqueline Scott, Eddie Firestone
War Horse (2011)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Young Albert enlists to serve in World War I after his beloved horse is sold to the cavalry. Albert's hopeful journey takes him out of England and to the front lines as the war rages on.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Jeremy Irvine, Emily Watson, David Thewlis
1941 (1979)
Action | Comedy | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Hysterical Californians prepare for a Japanese invasion in the days after Pearl Harbor.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: John Belushi, Dan Aykroyd, Treat Williams
Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Four horror/sci-fi segments directed by four famous directors which are their own versions of classic stories from Rod Serling's landmark television series.

Directors: Joe Dante, John Landis, and 2 more credits »
Stars: Dan Aykroyd, Albert Brooks, Vic Morrow
Lincoln (2012)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

As the Civil War continues to rage, America's president struggles with continuing carnage on the battlefield as he fights with many inside his own cabinet on the decision to emancipate the slaves.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Daniel Day-Lewis, Sally Field, David Strathairn


Cast overview, first billed only:
Harpo Johnson (as Willard Pugh)
Leonard Jackson ...
John Patton Jr. ...
Carl Anderson ...


This film follows the life of Celie, a young black girl growing up in the early 1900's. The first time we see Celie, she is 14 - and pregnant - by her father. We stay with her for the next 30 years of her tough life... Written by Colin Tinto <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Alice Walker's Pulitzer Prize Winning Story. See more »




PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

7 February 1986 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Moon Song  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$15,000,000 (estimated)


$94,175,854 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Whoopi Goldberg's first feature film. See more »


During the church scenes with the "God's Trying To Tell You Something" track, a Hammond organ is audible being played through a Leslie rotary speaker in the left channel. However, the Leslie (then known as Vibratone) rotary speaker wasn't introduced until the mid to late forties and it certainly was not marketed alongside a Hammond organ. The Hammond Organ Company and Electro Music, the company which manufactured Leslie speakers, were involved in a bitter dispute over the popularity of the Leslie versus Hammond's own line of stationary tone cabinets. See more »


Shug: That means you still a virgin.
Celie: Yeah, because don't nobody love me.
Shug: I love you.
See more »


Referenced in Chelsea Lately: Episode #7.107 (2013) See more »


Heaven Belongs to You
Written by Andraé Crouch (as Andrae Crouch) and Sandra Crouch
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Spielberg's 1st "Serious" Film Is Beautiful and Powerful...
28 March 1999 | by (Philadelphia, PA) – See all my reviews

A film that can make you shed tears of sadness and tears of joy would be considered quite a step in the career of a common filmmaker. The fact is, Steven Spielberg, probably our greatest story-teller, has been doing this in various movie formats for years. THE COLOR PURPLE, at the time, was considered risky, especially after action classics like JAWS and RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK. In hindsight, this film should have come as no surprise, for Spielberg had made us cry tears of joy and sadness in E.T. Critics called COLOR PURPLE his entrance into intellectual fare. It is quite an entrance. No special effects, no swashbuckling, just brilliant story-telling based on a literary classic by Alice Walker. One surprise is how Spielberg could present such a moving film about African-Americans in the deep south. Slavery is gone, but in the south depicted here, it seems as though blacks are using other blacks as slaves.

Spielberg is always put down for sentimentalizing his pictures or adding an element of childishness to please the audience. This is really the first of overlooked films from his career that you cannot make these observations. It is the first in a line of films people either didn't see or wouldn't see because there are no aliens. EMPIRE OF THE SUN, ALWAYS, SCHINDLER'S LIST, etc.. His awesome talent is obvious with this specific picture because A) he uses mostly untrained, first-time actors, B) he tackles a subject most felt was unadaptable to the screen, and C) it is pure drama with no strings pulled where characters grow and change over the passage of roughly 30 years. It is almost epic-like in look and scope and the fact that it did not garner a single Academy Award from 11 nominations is a travesty and an insult.

Whoopi Goldberg is fabulous as the tortured Celie, an unattractive woman given away by her incestuous father to an abusive Danny Glover, who she only knows as "Mister". The film follows a path of occasional beatings and mental torture she goes through while with "Mister". The PG-13 rated film is pretty open to the sexual issues raised by the Walker novel. This is not "The Burning Bed" in Georgia by any means. There is no blatant revenge taken as might be expected. It happens gracefully. Goldberg perfectly plays a human being, someone in need of love and someone who deserves it. The films' most poignant and heartbreaking moment comes when Goldberg and her sister, Nettie (played by Akosua Busia) are separated, maybe forever. (Possibly foreshadowing Holocaust separation of child and parent?) You may have to check for a pulse if you are not moved by this sequence.

The color purple stands for the beauty of the fields and flowers surrounding these poor people. There really is something to live for, but love triumphs over all. Spielberg bashers take note: the guy can make an unforgettable classic without any cute aliens.

RATING: 10 of 10

97 of 123 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
nasty woman disease readyfortheeighties
What happened to all of Albert's... tacey75
A really bad movie meisterjaan
Anyone else despise Miss Millie? trevvymac76
Favorite Line??? tubman15
Is there anyone else out there who thought... bmjohnson1006
Discuss The Color Purple (1985) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page