The Color Purple (1985) is A Vibrant Celebration of Sisterhood, Self-Acceptance, and Liberation

My favorite film of all time is the 1985 film “The Color Purple.” I can’t even begin to count how many times I’ve seen it and I completely drawn in every time. “The Color Purple” is a masterpiece of cinema that celebrates the power of sisterhood, self-acceptance, and liberation.

Based on the novel of the same name by Alice Walker, set in the early 1900s, the film follows the life of Celie (portrayed by Whoopi Goldberg), a young African-American woman who faces oppression and abuse from in the men in her life. Through her journey, she discovers the strength and support of the women around her and learns to love herself for who she is.

The film’s use of color is a defining feature that sets it apart from other movies. The way color is deployed is not just a visual feast, but a meaningful tool to convey the emotional journey of the characters. From the lush, vibrant purple fields of Celie’s childhood to the warm oranges and yellows of her new life, the color palette of the film is carefully chosen to reflect the mood and tone of the story. Color is used to create a vivid, immersive experience that draws viewers into the world of the characters and helps them connect with their struggles and triumphs.

In particular, the use of purple is a powerful symbol of Celie’s transformation. Historically associated with royalty and nobility, purple is a color that represents power, luxury, and wealth. By using purple to depict Celie’s childhood, the film suggests that she is a person of great inner strength and potential, even if she does not yet see it. As the story unfolds and Celie begins to assert herself and claim her worth, the color palette shifts to warmer, brighter hues like orange and yellow. This visual transformation mirrors Celie’s own emotional journey, as she moves from a place of darkness and oppression to one of light and hope.

The film’s use of color is a masterful example of how visual storytelling can enhance and deepen the emotional impact of a story. By using color to reflect the inner lives of the characters, the film creates a rich, immersive experience that stays with viewers long after the credits roll.

“I think it pisses God off when you walk by the color purple in a field and don’t notice it.”

Shug Avery

“The Color Purple” is much more than just a visually stunning film. While its use of color is certainly noteworthy, the movie is primarily a celebration of sisterhood and the power of women to support and uplift each other. The characters in the film are complex and dynamic, each with their own unique strengths and vulnerabilities. From the strong and resilient Sofia, played by Oprah Winfrey, to the gentle and nurturing Shug Avery, portrayed by Margaret Avery, every woman in the story is a force to be reckoned with.

Despite the many challenges they face, including racism, sexism, and domestic violence, the women in “The Color Purple” come together to create a community of love and acceptance. They support each other through difficult times and celebrate each other’s triumphs. This sisterhood is especially important given the oppressive world around them, where they are often marginalized and mistreated.

“The Color Purple” is a powerful testament to the strength of women and the importance of sisterhood. It is a film that inspires and uplifts, reminding us of the transformative power of love and community. Through its vivid portrayal of female characters who are both complex and relatable, the movie encourages us to support and uplift the women in our own lives.

“Girl, you oughta bash Mister’s head open and think about heaven later.”


At its core, “The Color Purple” is a story of liberation. It’s about breaking free from the chains that bind us and discovering our own worth and potential. Through the struggles and triumphs of its characters, this film inspires us to embrace our own journey of self-discovery and to celebrate the power of sisterhood and community.

“The Color Purple” is a remarkable film that continues to resonate with audiences today. With its use of color, themes of sisterhood, self-acceptance, and liberation, and powerful performances from its cast, it’s a must-see for anyone who loves cinema. So, grab some popcorn and settle in for a journey of love, strength, and empowerment.