The Color Purple (2023) | Transcript

A woman faces many hardships in her life, but ultimately finds extraordinary strength and hope in the unbreakable bonds of sisterhood
The Color Purple (2023)

Director: Blitz Bazawule
Writers: Marcus Gardley, Alice Walker, Marsha Norman
Stars: Fantasia Barrino, Taraji P. Henson, Danielle Brooks, Colman Domingo, Corey Hawkins, H.E.R., Halle Bailey, Phylicia Pearl Mpasi
Release dates: November 20, 2023 (London), December 25, 2023 (United States)
Running time: 141 minutes

The 2023 film adaptation of The Color Purple offers a profound exploration of Alice Walker‘s renowned novel, presenting a vivid portrayal of endurance, sisterhood, and self-realization set against a backdrop of deep-seated racism and sexism. This adaptation enriches the narrative with its emotional depth and complexity.

Act I: The Emergence of Adversity and Hope:

In rural Georgia of the early 1900s, we are introduced to Celie (Danielle Brooks), a young Black woman enduring severe mistreatment at the hands of her father, Alfonso (Louis Gossett Jr.). Her life is a series of tragedies, marked by the loss of her two children and an enforced marriage to the callous widower Albert “Mister” Johnson (Colman Domingo). Her only comfort comes through secret letters to her sister Nettie (H.E.R.), who escapes their father’s tyranny to join missionaries in Africa. These letters become Celie’s outlet, a means to articulate her anguish and yearn for a brighter existence.

Celie’s life takes a turn with the arrival of Shug Avery (Taraji P. Henson), a bold singer and Mister’s lover. Enthralled by Shug’s freedom and charm, Celie forms a deep connection with her, learning about love and reclaiming her self-esteem. Shug’s influence empowers Celie to confront the abuse she faces from Mister.

Act II: The Growth of Sisterhood and Rebellion:

Despite societal judgment and jealousy, Celie’s bond with Shug flourishes, igniting a sense of defiance in her. She allies with Sofia (Halle Bailey), Mister’s assertive daughter-in-law, and Squeak (Ciara), Sofia’s partner, who also suffers Mister’s scorn. Together, these women create a haven of mutual support, finding comfort in music and stories, and resist the suppression imposed upon them.

Sofia’s bold stance against Mister leads to her imprisonment, a pivotal moment that strengthens Celie’s resolve to liberate herself. She embarks on a journey of self-education, discovering her voice through poetry and music.

Act III: The Path to Self-Discovery and Healing:

As time passes and societal change swirls around her, Celie experiences transformative moments. Nettie’s return brings revelations about their family and
offers closure to Celie’s long-held sorrows. Simultaneously, Mister experiences a personal evolution, recognizing the resilience and fortitude of the women he’s wronged, and seeks to make amends.

Celie, now embracing her newfound strength and autonomy, establishes a juke joint, a lively haven for women to celebrate their identities and express themselves without restraint. She openly accepts her sexuality and revels in life’s myriad possibilities.

The 2023 adaptation of The Color Purple transcends a straightforward plot, weaving a rich, layered narrative that reflects both personal and collective transformation. It highlights the resilience of women and the unbreakable bonds of sisterhood, prevailing against overwhelming odds.

* * *

* * *

[banjo playing]

[horse hooves clopping]


[sister 1] ♪ Hey, sister Whatcha gon’ do? ♪

[sister 2] ♪ Going down by the river Gonna play with you ♪

♪ Papa don’t like No screaming round here ♪

♪ No lip from a woman When they chug that beer ♪

♪ Sho’ nuff sun gon’ shine ♪

♪ Gonna be grown ladies Of the marrying kind ♪

♪ Sho’ nuff moon gon’ rise ♪

♪ Like a huckleberry pie In the middle of the sky ♪

♪ Gonna be all right Gonna be all right ♪

[both chuckling]

[sister 1 sighs]

[sister 1] Nettie.

[Nettie] Come on.

[sister 1] We’re gonna be late. Oh, hush.

Just live a little.

Nettie, wait! [laughs]

[both laughing]

♪ It’s Sunday morning ♪

♪ So make a joyful noise ♪

♪ Unto the Lord! ♪

[upbeat music playing]

♪ When the king threw Daniel In the lions’ den ♪

♪ The good Lord works In mysterious ways ♪

♪ God sent a mighty angel Brought him out again ♪

♪ The good Lord works In mysterious ways ♪

♪ When God saw the wicked He knew what to do ♪

♪ Said, “Noah, bring the animals Two by two ♪

♪ ‘Cause I’m gonna keep Your boat afloat For 40 days” ♪

♪ The good Lord works In mysterious ways ♪

♪ Yes, he works Oh, he works ♪

♪ The good Lord works In mysterious ways ♪

♪ Yes, he works ♪

♪ I know he works ♪

♪ The good Lord works In mysterious ways ♪

♪ Yes, he works ♪

♪ I know he works ♪

♪ The good Lord works In mysterious ways ♪


Let’s get a move on.

Celie, you’re slow as mud.

She going as fast as she can, Pa.

She say the baby been kicking.

[congregation vocalizing continues]

What you gonna call your baby, chile?

If it’s a boy, I’ma name him Adam, like in the Bible.

Ain’t that precious?

[father] Nettie. Celie. Get up here.

Yes’em, Pa.

♪ God still works ♪

♪ Yeah, yeah Yeah, yeah, yeah ♪

♪ He still works ♪

♪ Yes, my God still works ♪

♪ God still works ♪

♪ He works ♪

♪ In mysterious ways ♪

♪ Yay, yay! ♪

♪ None of us knows What the Lord’s got planned For us ♪

♪ No, sir ♪

♪ So stop your moaning Quit your groaning ♪

♪ Throw away your handkerchief ♪

♪ And put your hand in his And follow where he leads ♪

♪ The good Lord’s Walkin’ witcha ♪

♪ Walkin’ witcha ♪

♪ The good Lord’s Talkin’ witcha ♪

♪ Talkin’ witcha ♪

♪ God is singin’ witcha ♪

♪ And he’s shoutin’ witcha ♪

♪ Shoutin’ witcha ♪

♪ God is ♪

♪ God is ♪

♪ God is God is ♪

♪ He’s walkin’, talkin’ Singin’, shoutin’ ♪

♪ He’s walkin’, talkin’ Singin’, shoutin’ ♪

♪ Walkin’, talkin’ Singin’, shoutin’ ♪

♪ Walkin’, talkin’ Singin’, shoutin’ ♪

♪ Walkin’, talkin’ Singin’, shoutin’ ♪

♪ Walkin’, talkin’ Singin’, shoutin’ ♪

♪ Because the good Lord works ♪

[reverend] ♪ Oh, yeah ♪

[congregation] ♪ In mysterious ♪

♪ In mysterious ways ♪

♪ Ways ♪

[reverend vocalizes]

And with all her strength, the girl returned to work in the field.

But it was so hot, she could barely stand.

The overseer yelled at her till she got to her feet.

Frightened, she turned to her mama and asked

Let me say it. This my favorite part.

Just like Mama used to read it.

The girl was floating above the ground, but she wasn’t flying yet.

She got nervous that the overseer would catch her, and without faith, she fell to the ground hard.


When can I wear it, Ma?

Not now, baby, but soon.



This color’s gonna look like heaven on you.

[chuckles] All right.

Now, give me your hand.

I want you to feel the needle.

Mmm. Feel it?

I want you to feel the cloth. Feel it.

Yes, Mama. All right. I want you to try.


Now, don’t be scared. Don’t be scared.

Push it through there. That’s good. That’s good.

[screams, breathes heavily]

[gasps] I broke my water.

Hold still. I’ll get the midwife.

[breathing heavily, screaming]

You’re doing just fine, Miss Celie.

I just need you to push one more time.


Almost there.

One more push. Come on.


[baby cries]

It’s a little boy.

[Nettie chuckles]

[midwife] There he is.

Here’s Mommy.


Adam. Adam.

You nursed that baby yet?

I had a boy, Pa. [father] Hand him here.

I’ll give him to God.

Same as I did the other.

Let me have just one more day with him.


I can help Celie with the baby.

I’ll even help pull some of her weight round the house.

[father] No. That baby mine. I take him if I want to.

Give him here.

[baby crying]

You think he killing my babies?

I believe he give ’em to God, just like he say.

But they mine.

[breathes shakily]

How come God don’t give ’em back?


More like early evening, but howdy.

Early evening?

That means it’s getting late, gal. Let me give you a ride home.

I ain’t nobody’s gal but my ma, and she dead.

You can call me Nettie.

[banjo playing]

♪ You got Some real pretty teeth, Nettie ♪

[chuckles] Oh, Lord. He singing.

♪ And your skin dazzle my eyes ♪

♪ Like the moon Light the night ♪

And he poetical too.

♪ That’s a real pretty dress ♪

♪ Nettie ♪

My sister made it.

♪ And your shoes Look just right ♪

♪ On them pretty little feet ♪

Now you lying.

I’m a tomboy, and I likes to climb trees.

I got corns, bunions and blisters. Ain’t nothing pretty about my feet.

Now leave me be.

Name’s Mister.

[newspaper seller] Extra! Extra!

You, sir! Want your newspaper?

Thank you, sir.

Good day, young man.

[newspaper seller] Extra! Extra!

Who wants the paper?

[indistinct chatter]

[toy jingling]

[toddler gurgling]

[toy drops]

[Celie gasps] Olivia.

You know who I is?

Yeah. I’s your ma.



[father] Get your narrow behind back to work.

[toddler giggling]

[people grunting rhythmically]

[Celie] ♪ I seen my baby girl ♪

♪ Can’t be no one else ♪

[grunting continues]

♪ Looking just like me And my daddy ♪

♪ More us than us ourself ♪

[rhythmic grunting continues]

♪ I sees her hand On the lady’s shoulder ♪

♪ She come outta me Chewing her fist ♪

♪ She got my eyes ♪

♪ And a face I done kissed ♪

♪ I sews “Olivia” On her diadies ♪

♪ Little stars and flowers too ♪

♪ I know she sees Same things I do ♪

♪ Oh, the Lord done Send me a sign ♪

♪ Oh, I know she be mine ♪

♪ Mmm ♪

♪ When I see mamas Holding babies ♪

♪ I feel pain come ‘Cross my heart ♪

♪ Something deep inside Been torn apart ♪

♪ It like a spell ♪

♪ Come on my body ♪

♪ My baby’s breath on me ♪

♪ She gon’ carry her away But I still see ♪

♪ Oh, the Lord done Send me a sign ♪

♪ Oh, I know she be mine ♪

♪ Oh, the Lord done Send me a sign ♪

♪ Oh, I know she be mine ♪

♪ Mmm ♪

♪ Mmm ♪

♪ She be mine ♪

♪ She be mine ♪

[father] Celie!



Where was you?

Sweeping the porch.

Get upstairs.

[Mister whistling]

Morning, Alfonso.

What can I do you for?

I wants to ask for your Nettie’s hand.

Needs me a wife.

You gonna need more than that from what I hear.

Besides, Nettie too smart.

She gonna be a schoolteacher.

But I’ll let you have Celie, though, for a cow and a couple of eggs.

She ugly as homemade sin, but will work hard like a man.

Celie. That’s what you call that thing walked in your store?

I don’t want that.

Then your children ain’t beating on you bad enough, are they?

But you’ll come around. Hopefully.

‘Fore they burn your house down.

And it’s only a matter of time ‘fore they do.

And then what you gonna do, huh? How you gon’ bring a wife

Who that outside talking to Pa?

The devil.

He followed me home from school today, and now I can’t get rid of him.

He sure look nice for a devil.

[clicks tongue] Devil always look nice till he start raising hell.

Church ladies say he got three raggedy children at home.

Three? Mmhmm.

Say his last wife was shot by some man she was seeing on the side.

And he ain’t grieve none, ’cause he got something on the side too.

A loose woman named Shug Avery.

What’s a loose woman?

A woman who won’t let no one man tie her down, I suppose.

That sounds nice. I wants to be a loose woman.

No, you don’t. Let me teach you something.

Today, our teacher taught us about a place called Africa.

She say that’s where our peoples is from.



She say our mommas come from queens over there.

You know what that means?

That means that we… royalty.

[both giggling]

Pack your things, Celie.

Time for you to leave.

You marrying Mister.

Who Mister?

The devil.

Mama’s sewing kit.

Don’t let him walk all over you, hear?

You keep your head held high.

Just like Mama taught us.

I’ll come visit you when I can.

Even if we have to part, you and me, us have one heart. Us have one heart.

[Celie grunts, breathes heavily]


[children playing in distance]

Hey. [sighs, chuckles]

You think this is bad, wait till you get upstairs.

[crashing sounds]

Y’all come down here and greet your new mama!

Hey, come on now. Come on.

[footsteps approaching]

You could, um…

get to cleaning, and then fix supper. [gasps]

[chicken clucks] [gasps]

[flies buzzing]

[water dripping]

Mercy to glory, Miss Celie.

This food so good, it got my eyes watering.

I gots to have seconds.

[Mister] Harpo!

You done already had seconds.

Well, thirds then.

[children giggling, whispering indistinctly]

When you gonna give these children a bath?

It’ll have to wait till morn


[water splashing]



[train bell tinkling]

[Mister grunting, breathing heavily]

[Mister sighs, grunts]


[knocking on door]


Pa tried to touch me.

I can’t live there no more.

Come on.

Where she gonna sleep?

[Nettie] I won’t be no trouble, Mister.

I goes to school during the day, and at nights I study.

You gonna have to pull your weight around the house.

And whatever I say go.

Yes, sir.

[sighs] Fair enough, then.

I’m going to town.

Gather me some firewood ‘fore I get back.


[both giggling]


[Nettie laughing] What?

[Celie] Where we going?

We gots to get firewood ‘fore Mister come home.

[Nettie] We will. But first, we gots to have us some fun.

But, Nettie!

Come on! We’ll only be gone a spell!

[fingers clicking]

[harmonica playing]

♪ Days keep rolling by ♪

♪ Just trying To keep your head up ♪

♪ Lift it to the sky ♪

♪ When you get down Just dance around ♪

♪ Like you’re a child ♪

♪ I’ll never let you Get too low ♪

♪ Oh ♪

♪ If you could be a butterfly ♪

♪ Then I know God will take you far ♪

♪ Life can never Break your soul ♪

♪ Every day the sun don’t shine But, oh ♪

♪ We keep it movin’ Keep it movin’ ♪

♪ It’s up to you The way you choose to go ♪

♪ Keep it movin’ Keep it movin’ ♪

♪ Nothing’s gonna take you down But, oh ♪

♪ Just let it go ♪

♪ Life can never Break your soul ♪

♪ Tryin’ Prayin’ ♪

♪ Pushin’ Aimin’ ♪

♪ Smilin’ Takin’ it all in ♪

♪ Tryin’ ♪

♪ Tryin’ ♪

♪ Prayin’ ♪

♪ Prayin’ ♪

♪ Pushin’ ♪

♪ Pushin’ ♪

♪ Aimin’ ♪

♪ Aimin’ ♪

♪ Smilin’ ♪

♪ Smilin’ ♪

♪ I’m takin’ it ♪

♪ All in ♪

♪ Every day the sun don’t shine But, oh ♪

♪ We keep it movin’ ♪

♪ Keep it movin’ ♪

♪ Keep it movin’ ♪

♪ Keep it movin’ ♪

♪ It’s up to us The way we choose to go ♪

♪ Keep it movin’ ♪

♪ Keep it movin’ ♪

♪ Keep it movin’ ♪

♪ Keep it movin’ ♪

♪ Nothing’s gonna take you down But, oh ♪

♪ Wherever we go ♪

♪ Life can never Break your soul ♪


[Nettie] Come on!

[Celie] I’m coming!

[both giggling]




[Mister] Celie! Get me my pipe.

Hurry, now.

[thunder rumbling]

[thunder crashes, rain patters]

[banjo playing]


What you doing?

[whispering] Be sweet, now.

Oh. A possum can’t run from a big dog. [breathing shakily]

Let go, please.

Come on. [grunting]

Why you fighting? You know how I feel about you.

I don’t feel the same.


Come here!



Get out of here!

Get! Get! Get!


Nettie! You okay?

That’s the thanks I get for letting her stay!


[Celie] No, no!

Go on, get!


[Mister] Get off of my land!

[Nettie screaming] I’m sorry! I didn’t mean it!

Come here, girl! Get over here.

[crying] No!


Nettie! Write me!

I’ll write you every day. [Celie sobbing]

Nothing but death can keep me from it.

[screams] [Mister] Get off my land!

You ain’t never gonna hear from her again.

[sobbing, gasping]

She come back here again, I’ll kill you both.

You hear? I’ll kill you dead!

♪ So many winters gray And summers blue ♪

♪ Another endless day To suffer through ♪

She must be dead.

♪ What kind of God are you? ♪

[bicycle bell ringing]


[Mister] Morning.

All right.

Looks like spring come a little early this year.

[postman grunts] Yep.

Well, small miracle, if you ask me.

[Mister speaks indistinctly]


Anything come for me?

What you asking about things that don’t belong to you for?

That mailbox is mine’s.

[Harpo] When you gonna start listening to me?

You chirp more than the birds.

Sofia, I mean it. Don’t you go no further.

That’s where I’m going.

I’ma put my foot down!

What that foot supposed to do, Harpo?

I bet it won’t walk over me.

Howdy, ma’am. Is Mister around?

Oh, come on. Nah, he at the ale house.

[grunts] Ale house.

No, no. He ain’t there. Sofia!

[Mister] Give me ten like you drinking gin.

When your daddy go out, guess who go in.

You got it, baby. [exclaims]

Dirty 30! Really.



Put it down.

I’m gonna put it down.

[Harpo] You can’t go in there.

[Sofia] I’m going in.

No, you You ain’t supposed to be in here, girl.


What’s wrong with you, gal?

Can’t you read?

“No fighting, no killing, no women.”


Yeah, I read what pleases me.

All right. Now, come on.

You gonna have to get her out of–

Howdy, sir. High time me and you was introduced.

Tell him who I is, Harpo. [chuckles]

[Harpo] Uh, well, uh, Pa, Grampy, gents.

I wants to introduce y’all to my girl.

This here’s Sofia.

Mmm. That’s a lot of woman.

Whose kin are you, gal? You seem like trouble.

Oh, no, sir. I’m one of Argus Butler’s daughters.

No trouble at all. Just big.

[Sofia chuckles]

Who the daddy? [spits]


How we know that?

Harpo know. That’s what matters.

See, me and him, we more than a whimsy.

We’s in love.

Okay, now. Come on, Sofia. Stop it.

This is better than a radio show, man. This good as hell. Come on.

I ain’t gonna let you marry my son ’cause you in the family way.

Pretty gal like you can take his mind, but you can’t have his money.

He ain’t got no money.

See, my sister and her husband say I can live with them as long as I please.

Now, I come here out of respect.

But if there ain’t none to get, there sure ain’t none to give.

Sofia Harpo!

Let’s get on up and away from here.

I’m coming, sugar dumpling.


Don’t you move a muscle.

Fine. Stay then, Harpo.

But when you gets cold at night, you know good and well who heats up your bones.

Don’t keep me waiting.

That gal ain’t welcome in my house.

Pa, she carrying my child.


She ain’t worthy of ya.

[thumping, hammering]

[Mister grunting]

What is that?

What in tarnation…




You get my permission to build down here?


You get my permission to build down here?

Oh, you know Grampy gave me this land when I turned 16.

I’m building me and Sofia a home on it.

Boy, you carrying your brains in your back pocket?

You can’t build no house on no swampland.

If you were smart, you’d use it to plant rice.

Well, maybe I ain’t smart.

That’s the wisest thing you done ever said.

Maybe I gots a dumb heart ’cause I’s in love.

You ain’t in love. You just in way over your head.

All the learnin’ I put inside you, you still don’t know how to be a man.

I’m building my woman a house, Pa.

Now, you can stay and help if you want.

And if not, well, this conversation finna be shorter than the time it took you to walk down here.

Is that so? [Harpo] That’s right.


[rhythmic hammering]

♪ Uhhuh ♪

♪ Uhhuh ♪

♪ Uhhuh ♪

[Harpo humming]

♪ Uhhuh ♪

♪ I been workin’ and workin’ ♪

♪ And workin’ ♪

♪ Uhhuh ♪

♪ Till that sun go down ♪

♪ Till that sun go down ♪

♪ See my baby there Standing on the corner ♪

♪ Uhhuh ♪

♪ And she looking so fine ♪

♪ Looking so fine ♪

♪ Lord, if I ever get my hands On a dollar ♪

♪ Uhhuh ♪

♪ I bet I blow her mind ♪

♪ Bet I blow her mind ♪

♪ Till then I just keep on workin’ ♪

♪ Uhhuh ♪

♪ ‘Cause I ain’t got time ♪

♪ ‘Cause I ain’t got time ♪

♪ Workin’, workin’, workin’ ♪

♪ Uhhuh ♪

♪ I’m workin’ Workin’, workin’ ♪

♪ Uhhuh ♪

♪ I’m workin’, workin’ ♪

♪ Uhhuh ♪

♪ Lord, I’m workin’, workin’ ♪

♪ Uhhuh ♪

[chuckles, panting] Mmhmm. Hmm.

Yeah, what you think? Mmhmm.

We got this. Go on, now.

All right, leave that on over there.

Give me that piece of wood. Oh, Sofia.

[Sofia, Sofia’s friends] ♪ Uhhuh ♪

[Sofia, Sofia’s friends chuckling]

[blues singer on gramophone] ♪ I guess that means ♪

♪ That you are just Too beautiful for words ♪

[Celie] Who that singing?

That’s Shug, the woman I should’ve married.

[song continues]

Sounds pretty.

I knows it.

Shut up and go to sleep.

[Shug] ♪ Been courted like a queen ♪

♪ But when I see What’s in your heart ♪

[song fades]



Oh, Miss Celie!

[chuckles] Come in.

Harpo, we got company.

I brought curtains for the house and a blanket for the baby.

Well, don’t this beat the band.

Harpo said you could do magic with a needle, but I do declare… [chuckles]

Harpo! I said we got company.

[Harpo stammers] Come on! I’m coming.

I’m right here. Take the baby.

Me and Miss Celie need to converse like womens. Mmhmm.

And make us tea.

Come on. [chuckles] Well– I’m holding the baby. How I’m supposed to make tea?

[Celie] I’ll make it.

Oh, no, you won’t neither. You’s a guest.

Figure it out!

I’ll figure you out.

Come on, baby. I got you.

I’m so tickled you come by. You my only friend in these parts.

How come you so nice when the rest of Harpo’s kin so mean and surly?

I don’t know. I figure if I

Maybe you too nice.

You must ain’t got no kinfolk round these parts.

Only kinfolk I had was my sister.

And I ain’t seen her in years.

That’s sad.

[Harpo] Tea!

You wanna make my wedding dress?

I’ll pay you good money for it. Sure.

Ooh! Thank you.



How come the tea ain’t hot?

Well, you didn’t say hot.

[groans] Everybody know tea’s supposed to be hot, Harpo!

[Harpo] Don’t be sassing me in front of company!

I just wanted hot tea.

You my hot tea.

[squeals] Give me a kiss.

[chuckles] Come here.

I now pronounce you man and wife.

[guests oohing]

I’s married now!

[guests cheering]

[brass band playing cheerful music]

[laughing, cheering]

[breathes deeply]

I take it you and Miss Sofia having a rough honeymoon.

How come I can’t get her to mind me like you do Pa?

I don’t know.

Every woman ain’t the same.

You want some water?

I wants her to jump when I say.

Maybe she ain’t a jumping woman.

I fear we ain’t gonna last, Miss Celie.

She mean as a train, but I…

I loves her.

What I’m gonna do?

Beat her.

You told Harpo to beat me? No, ma’am.

You’s a damn liar.

I didn’t mean it.

Then why’d you fix your mouth to say it, then?

I say it ’cause I jealous of you.

You do what I can’t. You fight.

I loves Harpo. God knows I do.

But I’ll kill him dead ‘fore I let him or anybody beat me.

♪ All my life I’ve had to fight ♪

♪ Had to fight my daddy Had to fight my brothers ♪

♪ My cousins My uncles too ♪

♪ But I never, never, never ♪

♪ Never, never, never thought ♪

♪ I’d have to fight In my own house ♪


[blues guitar playing]


♪ I feel sorry for you ♪

♪ To tell you the truth ♪


♪ You remind me of my mama ♪

♪ Under your husband’s thumb ♪

♪ No ♪

♪ You under Your husband’s foot ♪

♪ What he say go ♪

♪ Why you so scared ♪

♪ I’ll never know ♪

♪ But if a man Raise his hand Hell no! ♪

[Sofia’s friends] ♪ Hell, hell, hell no! ♪

♪ Hell no! ♪

♪ Hell, hell, hell no! ♪

♪ Girl child ain’t safe In a family of mens ♪

♪ Sick and tired how a woman Still live like a slave ♪

♪ You better learn How to fight back ♪

♪ While you still alive ♪

♪ You show them, girls ♪

♪ And beat back that jive ♪

♪ ‘Cause when a man Just don’t give a damn ♪

♪ Hell no! ♪

♪ Hell, hell, hell no! ♪

♪ Hell no! ♪

♪ Hell, hell, hell no! ♪

♪ No, no No, no ♪

♪ Hell, hell, hell no! ♪

♪ Hell no! ♪

♪ Hell, hell, hell no! ♪

♪ No ♪

♪ When that man Used to touch me ♪

♪ He’d climb on top And start to rock me away ♪

♪ Lord knows I still love him ♪

♪ But he tried to make me mind And I just ain’t that kind ♪

♪ Hell no! ♪

♪ Hell, hell, hell no! ♪

♪ Don’t be no fool Don’t waste your time ♪

♪ Hell, hell, hell no! ♪

♪ Any man that hurts you Ain’t worth a dime ♪

♪ Hell, hell, hell no! ♪

♪ No, no, no You too good for that man ♪

♪ Hell, hell, hell no! ♪

♪ Hell no! ♪

♪ Oh, you got to say You need to say ♪

♪ You better say You oughta say ♪

♪ Hell ♪

♪ Oh, hell, hell, hell, hell ♪

♪ Hell ♪

♪ No! ♪

[banjo playing]

[footsteps approaching]

What happened to you?

Oh, nothing.

Nah, I was just, uh was kicked by a mule.

Was this mule wearing a dress?


Ah, you gon’ be all right.

Some women you just can’t tame.

What you need to do with that home you built is turn it to a smoke house.

You and me can grow us some tobacco.

[Harpo] Yeah, well, maybe I was, uh…

I was thinking maybe I’d turn it into a juke joint.

Juke joint? [Harpo] Yeah.

Don’t nobody want to dance by no smelly swamp.


Not unless Shug Avery singing.

That’s That’s good, Celie.

That’s a good idea.

[wind howling]

[birds screeching]

[thunder rumbling]

Reverend husband, I think you’s right about these being the last days.

Lord of mercy. Of all things to be right about.

[upbeat jazz playing]

God help me. That’s my daughter.

Howdy, Pa. [onlooker 1] That’s Shug Avery!

How you be?

[onlooker 2 gasps] Shug Avery!

[reverend scoffs] Mmm.

[upbeat jazz continues]

♪ Shug Avery’s comin’ to town ♪

♪ Shug Avery’s comin’ ♪

♪ Shug Avery’s comin’ to town ♪

♪ You know that she’s comin’ ♪

♪ She sting like a honeybee ♪

♪ Sweet pain comin’ over me ♪

♪ Skirt so short Gonna shock your ma ♪

♪ Make a man Wanna break the law ♪

♪ She’s a trollop In a tight dress ♪

♪ Crying shame ♪

♪ Looking like a hot mess ♪

♪ Shug’s her name ♪

♪ Bouncing in the bed ♪

♪ Drinking all your gin ♪

♪ Bumpin’ in the shed ♪

♪ Lovin’ all the men ♪

♪ Ain’t no other woman Like Shug ♪

♪ You know she’s comin’ ♪

♪ Ain’t no other woman Like Shug ♪

♪ Shug come across That county line ♪

♪ County line ♪

♪ Hey ♪

♪ Oh, Shug Avery’s Comin’ to town ♪

♪ Shug Avery comin’ to town ♪

[women] ♪ Lock up all your mens And your young boys too ♪

♪ Got no friends ‘Cept the ones she screw ♪

[all] ♪ Shug Avery comin’ to town ♪

♪ Shug Avery’s comin’ to town ♪

♪ Shug Avery’s comin’ ♪

♪ Shug Avery’s comin’ to town ♪

♪ You know that she’s comin’ ♪

♪ That Shug You know she no good ♪

♪ A snake in the woods Gonna poison you ♪

♪ You don’t understand What it do to a man ♪

♪ When you in her hands And she turn that screw ♪

[women] ♪ Better say farewell ‘Cause you’re going to hell ♪

[men] ♪ But a man feel swell When he in her spell ♪

[women] ♪ Better lock your doors

[men] ♪ Better change your drawers ♪

[all] ♪ She’s comin’, comin’ Comin’, comin’ ♪

♪ Shug Avery comin’ to town ♪

♪ Shug Avery comin’ to town ♪

[women] ♪ Lock up all your mens And your young boys too ♪

♪ Got no friends ‘Cept the ones she screw ♪

[all] ♪ Shug Avery comin’ to town ♪

[car horn blows]

♪ Got about A million questions ♪

♪ Rolling around my head ♪

♪ What she wear? ♪

♪ How her hair? ♪

♪ Is she skinny? ♪

♪ Is she stout? ♪

♪ Must be something To fuss about ♪

♪ Ain’t no other woman Like Shug ♪

♪ Don’t you know It ain’t no lie ♪

♪ When Shug come ‘cross That county line ♪

[car horn blowing]

[Shug] Whoo!

[Mister] Hey! [Shug] Hey!

We made it. There she! There she! [cackles]

We made it. Hey, baby.

[Shug] Thank you.

Hey. [cackles] Come on! [cackles]

Yeah! How you doing?

[Shug belches] Oh.

Hey, hey! Hey, hey! Whoa, whoa, whoa.

Whoa, whoa. Hey, Celie!

Okay. [grunts] Grab her head.


What’s wrong with her?

Nothing. She just gets thirsty and like to drink a little.

What Oh, shit. Quick, grab her leg. Grab her leg. Oh, sh

[Mister blowing]

Hot nuts!

Take care of that for me.

[upbeat jazz playing]


Hey, baby.

I made you something special.

[Shug] You trying to poison me!

[stammering] It ain’t so bad, baby, iffen you put a little hot sauce on it.

Hot sauce, my ass!

[door slams]

[upbeat jazz continues]

[Shug] Didn’t I say I wasn’t hungry?

[door opens]

[door closes]

[upbeat jazz ends]

[door opens]

[door closes]

[slow jazz playing on gramophone]

[Shug] Whoo! Hello! I’m out of giggle water!


Right away, baby.

[slow jazz distorts, stops]

[Shug] Somebody come turn my crank!

[Shug sighs]

Well, don’t just stare at it.

Turn the handle.

[slow jazz playing]

Where you going?

I need somebody to wash my back.

Mmm. Mmm.

♪ Got about a million tingles ♪

♪ Sneaking on up my spine ♪

♪ I wash her body And it feel like I’m prayin’ ♪

♪ Try not to look But my eyes ain’t obeyin’ ♪

♪ Guess I found out ♪

♪ What all of the fuss Is about ♪

♪ Shug Avery ♪

♪ This who they talking ’bout ♪

♪ And everything they say Is true too ♪

♪ Shug Avery ♪

[gramophone needle scratches]

[Shug humming]


[inhales deeply] Oh, you got good hands.

Ooh, you scratched a song

right outta my head. [chuckling]


How long you and Albert been a thing?


Your husband.

You tryin’ to tell me you don’t know your own husband’s name?

I thought his name was Mister.

Mister ain’t no name. It’s a title.

Just another way of saying “master,” if you ask me.

That man can’t even stand up to his own daddy, but got everybody calling him “Mister” like he the only one in town.


Let him tell it, he’ll try to convince you he is.

That man get to highstepping [laughs]

How come you don’t laugh none?

You know, if you ain’t gon’ laugh, you need to sell your funny bone.

[giggles] [laughs] Ooh!

Smile. It’s healthy.

Ain’t you got something to make you hop out of bed every morning and just smile?

Ain’t you got children?

I had two.

And I’m not sure if they alive or where they are.


Well… when you think about ’em, does your heart get full like the first time you held ’em?

Yes, ma’am.

Well, then they still alive.

That’s nature’s way of telephoning. Mmhmm.

That’s how I know my pa still in this world.

When I get to thinking about him, and how he used to sing to me–

How come you just don’t go and visit him?

He live just yonder by the church.

He don’t wanna see me.

He ain’t forgave me for choosing the blues over his religion.

Funny thing is,

God ain’t never left me.

I figure, if God understands why I sings the blues, then maybe one day my pa will.


Let’s see this smile in color.


[gasps] Ooh, sweet and lovin’ God. [giggles]

Now we’re talking.

Albert ain’t gon’ be able to keep his hands off you.

[gasps] Maybe we should try another color.

[laughing] Oh, my–

[“Prove It On Me Blues” playing]

[Mister laughing]

[Mister] Mmm.

[Shug] Mmm.


[Mister growling]

[Shug giggling]

Mmmmm. Mmmmm. Oh.


[Shug giggles] Whoo!

[Shug laughing] Ooh! Oh!

[footsteps approaching]

Heard you brought your ho back here and brought the plagues.

Don’t start that foolishness, Pa.

You want a glass of water, Ol’ Mister?

I don’t mind.

When I look over this land, I think about my daddy who slaved it.

To think of bringing a ho to this place where your ancestors died and bled…

Must be ashamed of yourself.

Daddy, Shug ain’t no ho.

She got a wild heart like me.

You ain’t got the head to understand I never stopped loving her.

[Ol’ Mister] The woman’s cursed. [snorts]

You ain’t seen those robins covering the sky last week?

Heard that’s when she arrived.

Not to mention the swarms of ‘squitoes and this here heat wave.

Here you are.

I sweetened it for ya.

Thank you. You have my sympathies here, girl.

You one of the few women in this town that allow your husband’s ho to sleep in your bed, spreading legs…

Daddy, it’s time to go.

You ain’t even gon’ let me finish my water first?


Daddy, go on.

[Ol’ Mister] Oh, shut up.

Come on. Come on. [giggles]

[Shug] How do you know which one is ripe?

I don’t know nothin’ about picking no peas.

[Celie chuckles] You got to feel ’em.

If they rough around the edges, they probably soft on the inside.

Whew, would you look at all of God’s beautiful creation.

You know, God loves admiration. Mmm.

You saying God is vain.

No. Not vain, Miss Celie.

God just wants to share a good thing.

You see, I think it pisses God off if you walk past the color purple and not notice it.

You saying God wants to be loved like it say in the Bible?

Oh, everything and everybody wants to be loved.

Especially God.

That’s why God be in everything.

And see, when you love what God has made, you is loving God and God is loving you.

You see, God is in music and the water, in the sunlight. [chuckles]

God be… he be as big as the sun, yet small enough to fit in all our hearts.

I been wondering… if God love me, then why he take my babies?

And why he take my Nettie?

Sound like men did that. Not God.

[Shug squeals] Harpo!

Miss Shug! Celie!

[squealing, laughing]

Look at you.

Oh, my goodness. [laughing]

Harpo. Uhhuh?

It sure is nice to see you not just following your pa’s footsteps, but building something of your own.

Thank you, Miss Shug. Thank you.

We opening Friday night.

And… well, me and the boys, we was kinda thinking you might like to come and sing a little.

But if you can’t, don’t worry, ’cause I gots a voice too.

Well, uh This my girl, Squeak.

Sounds nice.

You fellas gon’ be ready for me to sing come Friday?

Sho’ nuff we will.

Oh, well, yes, ma’am.

Well, all right. I guess I’m singing.

See, I told y’all.

Now, come on. Show me this juke joint.

I’ll show you. I’m so glad y’all came by.

[Shug] Oh, my goodness. Yes!

You got that jungle juice I like?

[Harpo] I got it. I made it just for you.

I knew you was coming.

[Shug] Oh, did you?

[Harpo] Y’all see my name up there?

[Shug] Oh, I do, baby.

Harpo, this is something else!

I got something for ya.

[Harpo’s buddy 1] I wanna see it.

I got something for ya. I wanna see that now.

[Harpo’s buddies] Whoo!

Yeah, I did pretty good with that, huh?

[Harpo’s buddy 2] Hey, come on. All right.

Y’all come. Go on and hang it up right there.

That look good, don’t it?

Hey. Come on.

[Harpo’s buddy 3] Come help me out, man.


They ain’t ready for us, y’all.


I don’t know if they ready. It’s your time now, man.

Here. [Harpo’s buddy 1] Thank you, man.

Toss one here.

All right.

[Harpo’s buddy 3] Yeah.


Hit it. Yeah. They gonna like that.

You already know that. They gonna like that!



There you go.

Hey! I want y’all to come on.

Come on see Shug Avery!

Y’all gonna love it.

I’m telling you, she coming to Harpo’s Juke.


[Harpo’s buddy 1] It’s go time!

[Celie chuckling]

[Shug chuckles] Come on.

I laid you out something.

Hmm. [chuckles, inhales sharply]


Oh, that’s fancy.


But this ain’t me. [scoffs]

I’s Hush.

Put it on.

You gonna be my guest tonight.

Mmm. We need to look like we belong.




Shug say for us to go on ahead.

Say she wanna make an entrance.

[clicks tongue]

[Harpo’s Juke chatter in distance]

[finger clicking]

[rhythmic finger snapping, stomping]

♪ Now there’s something ‘Bout good lovin’ ♪

♪ That all you ladies Should know ♪

[jazz instrumentation begins]

♪ If you wanna Light yo’ man on fire ♪ [sighs, chuckles]

♪ You gotta start it real slow ♪

[crowd whooping]

♪ Keep on turnin’ up the voltage Till that man begin to glow ♪

♪ Like you switching on A light bulb ♪

♪ Watch the juice Begin to flow ♪

[crowd cheering]

♪ Now that I’ve got Your attention ♪

♪ Here’s what you men Need to hear ♪

♪ You want your lady Racing with you ♪

♪ You got to get her in gear ♪

♪ Well, here’s the key To rev her motor ♪

♪ Find the spot She loves the best ♪

♪ If you don’t know where it is Give her the stick ♪

♪ She’ll do the rest ♪



[Shug] ♪ Push da button ♪

[ensemble] ♪ Push da button ♪

♪ Push da button ♪

♪ Push da button ♪

♪ You gotta push it If you wanna come in Hey! ♪

♪ Push da button ♪

♪ Push da button ♪

♪ Give me something ♪

♪ Push da button ♪

♪ To let ya baby know It ain’t no sin ♪

♪ Well, if you wanna Feel the train Acomin’ your way ♪

♪ Baby, push da button And pull the window shade ♪

♪ Come on and ♪

[ensemble gasping and moaning]

[ensemble cheering]

Whoo. It ain’t over yet, y’all.

♪ Now, ladies ♪

♪ Pull ♪

♪ I need you to work A little harder, okay? ♪

♪ I want you to reach down ♪

♪ Pull ♪

♪ And find your inner Shug Baby ♪

♪ Push, pull ♪

♪ There ya go ♪

♪ There ya go ♪

♪ All right now Hey! ♪

♪ Push da button ♪

♪ Push da button ♪

♪ Push da button ♪

♪ Push da button ♪

♪ You gotta push it If you wanna come in ♪

♪ Push da button ♪

♪ Push da button ♪

♪ Give me something ♪

♪ Push da button ♪

♪ To let ya baby know It ain’t no sin ♪

♪ Well, if you wanna Feel the train Acomin’ your way ♪

♪ Baby, baby, baby, baby ♪

♪ Whatta you gotta do? ♪

♪ Push da button ♪

♪ Push da button ♪

♪ Yeah ♪

[crowd cheering]

[Harpo] Hey, y’all! Hey! Listen up!

Drinks on the house!


Oh, Miss Celie! [chuckles]

Sofia. You look good!

Whoowee! [Celie] Look at you.

Who is this?

Henry Broadnax. But my people call me Buster.

He’s a prizefighter.

But the man ain’t never been knocked down until he met me.

[Sofia and Henry chuckle]


Shouldn’t you be at home taking care of your baby?

Shouldn’t you be somewhere with folks your age like a cemetery?


[Mister] Harpo!

[Sofia] I tell ya, I come in peace.

I don’t want no mess, Miss Celie.

[Harpo] Well…

[Sofia scoffs, chuckles]

Ain’t it just a scandal, you gallivanting round town with another man when you still married to me?

And I hear you raising his chil’ren too.

And he got four mouths to feed… plus mine.

Six, if you count our new baby. [chuckles]

New baby? [Sofia chuckles] Yes, Lord.

Me and Buster went and had us a girl.



Excuse me. [clears throat]


[Harpo sighs, inhales sharply]

I’m sorry I got us off on the wrong foot just now.

You, uh… care to shake a leg?

[Sofia] Come on.

[both chuckle]

[Harpo] I’ma steal her for just one minute.

[Henry] Careful.

Oh, yeah. I’ma be careful.

[Sofia] You still my sugar plum.

[Squeak] Harpo!

Who this woman?

Lord. You know who she is, all right?

We just found our rhythm.

You ain’t listening! I wants to dance too!

Fine with me.

[sighs] Oh, no, no. No.

This used to be your house.

You ain’t gots to go nowhere.

She walked away, left you a crying shame, now you mine.

[Harpo] All right.

Like I said, fine with me.

Don’t touch me, you snaggletooth heifer!

[crowd gasping]

[Harpo] Oh!

[Harpo] Oh, God!

Sofia, what is wrong with you?

Get your hands off of me!

Buster, I’m sorry.

[crowd clamoring]

[Harpo] Not my piano!

Now where are you going?

[Shug laughing]

[Celie] Oh! [grunts, laughs]

[Shug] Whoo. Sofia crazy!

[Harpo] That’s enough!

Did you see Sofia?

You keep singing at the juke, Harpo make a whole lot of money.

Oh, that boy don’t need me.

[laughing, sighs] ‘Sides, as much as I’d like to stay, Memphis is calling.

I got to remind these folks I’m still alive in the big city, or they gon’ forget me.

Hey. I ain’t ready for you to leave.

Mister much nicer when you here.

He don’t beat me as much.

Beat you?

Why he do that?

‘Cause I ain’t you, I guess.

You gots to stand up to him.

You gots to try.

When you leaving?

[sighs] Tomorrow afternoon.

But I’ll be back in a month or so, you’ll see.

You gone a hour…


…feel like forever to me.

I know. I know.

That’s why I gots to come back.

[chuckles] Nobody loves me like you do.

Where’s we going?

[sighs] Girl… it’s time for you to see the world!

[chuckles] Come on.

[both laughing]

[car horn honks]

[Celie, Shug] Whoo! [laughing]

Well, we’re here.


Thank you.


[Celie sighs, chuckles]

[Celie chuckles]


Hi. May I help you?

Two tickets, please.

Enjoy the show. Thank you.

Let’s go.

[film projector whirring]

[heartbeat thumping]

[orchestral music playing]

♪ Is that me ♪

♪ Who’s floating away? ♪

♪ Lifted up to the clouds ♪

♪ By a kiss ♪

♪ Never felt nothing like this ♪

♪ Will you be ♪

♪ My light in the storm? ♪

♪ Will I see a new world ♪

♪ In your eyes? ♪

♪ With you My whole spirit rise ♪

♪ And what about hope? ♪

♪ What about hope? ♪

♪ And what about joy? ♪

♪ What about joy? ♪

♪ What about tears When I’m happy? ♪

♪ What about wings When I fall? ♪

♪ I want you to be A story for me ♪

♪ That I can Believe in forever ♪

♪ And what about… ♪

♪ What about… ♪

♪ What about love? ♪

♪ What about… ♪

♪ What about… ♪

♪ What about… ♪

♪ What about… ♪

♪ What about love? ♪

[both] ♪ You and me ♪

♪ You and me and love now ♪

♪ You and me ♪

♪ Sing to me ♪

♪ What about… ♪

♪ What about… ♪

♪ What about… ♪

♪ Love? ♪

[film projector whirring]

[Celie] Mmm.

[birds chirping]

[rooster crows]

[Shug sighs, smacks lips]

[Shug sighing, grunts]

[car approaches, horn honks]



[clears throat] Uh, Albert around?

Oh, no. He probably somewhere passed out.

I’ll take the mail.

Take care now.


Mercy to glory!

Celie! [squeals] Celie!

Celie, get up!

You got a letter.

Get up!

It’s from her. Her?

Your Nettie!

Come on.

“Dear Celie,

I hope this reaches you, as I’ve been writing you every week f for years.

I suppose you didn’t get any of my letters because– because you ha haven’t written back.” [breathes shakily]

Nettie alive. Yes.

[Celie chuckles, breathes shakily]

“You probably won’t get this either, because Mister is still probably the only one who takes mail from the box.”

[sighs] “But if you do get this, I want you to know, I love you, and I’m not dead.”


There’s got to be more of ’em somewhere around here. Come on.

[Celie chuckles]



Hey, Pa. Come on, now.

Pa, get up! Come on, now.

Oh! Oh, shit. Oh.

Come on. Come on. Well, hey. [chuckles]

Hey. Hey, why you gotta wake me dr Oh!

Ooh! You almost stepped on my toe! Come on!

Well, hey, hey, you know, Shug leave for Memphis today.

Come on. We gotta hurry up.

No. Steps! Come on. Oh, shit.


Hold this.

[chuckles] Nettie.

[sighs] All of ’em.


[Harpo] Pa!

He’ll be back any minute now.

Yeah. Take all of ’em. Go.

[Celie laughs]

[Mister] Push da button! [laughing]


[Mister] Where Shug at?

Hey, Shug! You still leaving today?

Take all the time you need. I’ll have Albert help me pack.

[Mister] You up there?

[Shug] I’m coming!





[breathes deeply]

Down the street? Where? Stay a bit longer.

For what? It’s okay. Stay a little longer.

I’ll be back.


[band members chattering]

Hey. Take me with you. Next time.

I’ll be back before you can spell Mississippi.

Come on, fellas.

[exhales sharply]

[breathing heavily]

[Nettie] Dear Celie, when Mister forced me off his land, I got a job working for a pastor across town.

I help take care of their babies for food and shelter.

They told me they were going to Africa as missionaries.

While we were on a great boat to Africa, the reverend told me he and his wife couldn’t bear chil’ren.

But God sent them two.

They showed me the name you had sewn on the baby’s blanket, and I knew the babies were yours.

It’s a miracle!

Adam and Olivia are right here with me.

My babies.

They alive. And they with Nettie.

[Asante tribespeople singing]

[rhythmic music playing]

[Nettie] It was like Black seeing Black for the first time.

Celie, we are more than just kings and queens.

We’re at the center of the universe.

Dear Celie,

I hope this letter finds you well.

[British soldiers shouting]

Life has become dire for us.

Our village was bombed in order to make way for a road to grow cocoa trees.

[British colonial soldiers shouting]

[Asante tribespeople screaming]

[Nettie] The British colonial administrators ignored our pleas to let us keep our land.

We couldn’t fight ’em, so now we walk to a refugee camp across the border.

I have faith that God will let us see each other before we die.

I only hope when that day comes, we are not too old to recognize each other.


Why supper late?

[inhales sharply]

Because I I lost track of time I works the land from sunup to sundown, breaking my back.

All you gots to do is cook and clean, and you can’t even do that.

[Celie breathing heavily]

I– I’ll do better.

That’s what ya mouth say.

[gasps] Clean it up!

If I gots to eat late, you won’t eat at all.


[Sofia] There we go.

Y’all, scoot on real good. Make sure there some room.


Miss Celie! Hop on in. We going into town!

I can’t. I got work round the house.

[Sofia] Work can wait. Come on, girl.

I ain’t seen you since Jesus wept. Come on in.

[scoffs] [Buster] Come on, now. My treat.

[Sofia] Get in here!

[Sofia, younger child chuckling]

[Sofia] Oh, girl, these kids ain’t driving you crazy, are they?

[Celie] No, I like your kids.

[younger child] Yeah, yeah.

I don’t know, sister. [chuckles]

Oh! [chuckles]

Yeah, sure. Y’all want some ice cream?

[younger child] Ice cream!

Let’s go get some ice cream.

Y’all been so good today.

I want an ice cream.

Now hold on, lil’ junior. Let me get you now.

There you go.

Now don’t be asking this man all these questions.

He only got vanilla. He ain’t got no chocolate, okay?

How you doing, sir?

Hey, folks.

Uh, can I have two vanilla ice creams?

Sure thing.

[passenger] Are those yours?


They so chocolate I could just eat ’em up.

And so wellbehaved and clean.

You should come be my maid.

No, thank you.

[passenger] You sure?

That’s a lot of mouths to feed.

I’m Miss Millie, the mayor’s wife.

I’m sure you’ve heard of me.

If not, just ask around. The colored love me.

I’ll pay you fair.

[Buster] Honey.

Just get in the car.

Yeah, go on back to the car now.

Hey! I’m talking to you, gal.

You wants to be my maid or not?

Hell no.

What’s that you said to my wife?

I said hell no.

[younger child] Mama!

Come on, Sofia. Just get in the car!

[Sofia exclaims]


Buster, get my children out of here!

Don’t you touch me! Don’t touch me!

Get my children out of here!

Buster, get my children out of here!

Shut her up!

Get away!

Don’t touch me!

[older child] No!


Don’t let ’em see.

[screaming] Stop it!

Gotta know your place, girl.

[Celie] Hey, Sofia.

Hey, Sofia.

How you been?

Sorry I’s late.

But you know I won’t miss our visits come hell or heaven take me.

Sheriff say I could bring you a plate for Thanksgiving.

He say you ain’t ate in days.

Harpo and Squeak keep a close eye on your children.

And And then Buster, he help out every now and then.

Though I fear the incident broke him some.

But Harpo love his kids like they his own. [chuckling]

He make a whole lot of money down at the juke since Squeak been singing–

Time to go.

I just got here, sir.

I said time to go.

I’ll be back next week.

Now you eat something for me, hear?

I’ma get you out of here, God’s my witness–

I said time to go!


Don’t leave me.

Don’t leave me!

[Sofia crying]

[jail gate slams]

[harmonica playing]

♪ Girl child ain’t safe In a family of mens ♪

♪ I’m sick and tired How a woman still live Like a slave ♪

♪ Oh ♪

♪ We better learn How to fight back ♪

♪ While we still alive ♪

♪ So all of us girls Can beat back that jive ♪

♪ ‘Cause when a man Just don’t give a damn ♪

♪ Hell no! ♪

♪ Hell, hell no! ♪

♪ No, no, no ♪

♪ My Lord! My Lord! Hell no! ♪

♪ No, no ♪


Oh! [chuckling]

Aren’t we proud of our Sofia?

She’s come so far these past six years, I have agreed to allow her to live and work for me till she’s back on her feet.


Well, come on then.

[whispers] Sofia.

[car horn honks]

Let’s not dawdle.

[Celie] Sofia.

I made this for you.


[Nettie] Dear Celie…

[Nettie, older] …there must be a God, because I finally heard from you.

When your letter arrived in the village, I stared at it for an hour before I could open it.

My hands trembled so.

I cried enough to make–


I thought I told you not to touch the mail.



Shug’s coming shortly. Come shave me.



[inhales sharply]

[Mister] Celie! Get the molasses out your ass!


Keep your hands steady.

[breathing shakily]

[car horn honks]

[breathing heavily]

Yoohoo! I’s home.

[driver chuckles]

[Shug] Come on. Introduce you to my folks.

The minute after me and Grady got married, Grady said, “Honey, what you want for your honeymoon?”

I say, “Two things.”

“I wants a new car and a drive to see my two favorite peoples for Easter.”

Yeah, Shug talk about y’all so much, I feel like we already kin.

Miss Celie.

We’s married ladies now.

Come on. What you got to eat?

[distorted] All right. Nice to meet you.

[Grady] Mighty fine supper, Miss Celie.

I’m full as a tick on a big ol’ dog.

[laughs] That’s it. Yeah.

Well, Sofia, I think we, uh– We all glad you finally home.

Yeah. Welcome home, Sofia.

You sure you don’t want nothing to eat?


Well, the time has come for me to tell y’all, me and Grady can’t stay.

Mmm, yeah, we gotta get on the road ‘fore dusk.

Y’all just got here.

I know, but, uh, Grady gotta get back to work tomorrow. Mmhmm.

Also… we taking Celie with us.

Ain’t that right, Cel?


Come again?

Celie is coming to Memphis with us.

It’s time she saw more of this world.


I’d die before I let that happen.


That’s just the going away present I been needing.

Hey! Watch yourself!

You better handle your woman.

[stutters] She done found her mouth.

She’s just being stupid.

What’s gotten into you, dummy?

I done had enough of you.

That’s what’s gotten into me.

It’s time I be free from you and enter to creation.

You ain’t gon’ be talking to my boy that way. Not in my house.

Maybe if he hadn’t been your boy, he might at least be an inch of a man.

Watch your mouth!

You took my sister Nettie away from me.

And you hid her letters all these years, and you knew she was the only person love me.

But Nettie alive.

[Harpo] What? She is.

And my chil’ren with Nettie in Africa.

And when they get home, us all together, we gon’ whup your country ass!

Watch your mouth in my house!

It’s about time to load the luggage. No, no.

Come on, Miss Celie, why don’t you go and have some peas and be civil now?

Harpo, your daddy made my life hell on earth.

He ain’t nothing but a sack of dead horse shit.

And horse shit belong in the ground.


She called him a sack of dead horse shit.

Now if that ain’t worth the joy of laughter, I don’t know what is.

Harpo, pass me them peas.



I wanna thank you, Miss Celie… for everything you’ve done for me.

I was feeling mighty bad, rotting in that prison cell.

But you came and seen about me every week without fail.

[breathes shakily]

That’s how I knows there’s a God.

‘Cause he’s living in you.

The women at this table have lost their minds.

Shut up, you old toothless goat!

You leave me, you’re not gettin’ a thin dime.

Not a red cent.

[Mister] Come on! Come on!

[Shug] Celie, no!

[Harpo] No, no!

[Sofia] It ain’t worth it, Miss Celie!

Did I ever ask you for anything? [Mister panting]

Not even your old sorry hand in marriage!

[Shug] Come on, Celie. Let’s go!

Let’s go! Sofia can take care of this.

[Sofia] Oh, yeah. Sofia born to take care of this.

Y’all go on!

It’s always something.

Now where you going?

I wants to go to Memphis too.

And do what?


Oh, come on now. Squeak!

My name ain’t Squeak.

It’s Mary Agnes.

Come on now. Come on, Squeak.

[Sofia laughing]

Old Sofia home now! [chuckles]

There’s gon’ be some changes made!


[softly] She’ll be back, Pa.

She’ll be back.

[shouting] You’ll be back!

Where you gon’ go?

Shug got talent.

And looks.

All you fit to do is clean her slop jar and cook her food.

And you ain’t even that good a cook!

Until you do right by me, everything you think about gon’ crumble.

You Black, you poor, you ugly, you a woman.

I should’ve kept you under my shoe like the roach you is.

Everything done to me, already done to you.


I may be Black, I may be poor, I may even be ugly, but I’m here!



I’m here! [laughing]

You’ll be back!

[Celie giggling] Whoo!

[“Arkansas Blues (A DownHome Chant)” playing]

[Shug and Grady chuckling]

[Shug] We made it.

We are here.

[Grady] All right.

Home sweet home. [giggles]

[Grady] Yes.

[Shug] Mmm.

Come on. Let me show you around.

Go on and make yourself at home, Mary Agnes.

All right, let me take you up to your room.

I ain’t never had my own room before.

I probably wouldn’t even know how to act. [chuckles]

Please! Just act natural. Come on.

[worker] Come on!

[indistinct chatter]

[insects buzzing, chittering]


[Mister] Yeah?

You might wanna come take a look.

What’s going on? I’ll be there.

What’s going on?

Beetles! Huh?



I think we gon’ have to burn these again, boss.

It’s like this here land cursed.


[buzzing, chittering]

[workers exclaiming, grunting]

[Celie giggles] Shug?

[Shug giggles] Come on.

One more. [chuckles]

[Celie] Oh, what?

Almost there. What?



Happy birthday, Miss Celie!

Aw! Here, let me take that.

Here. It’s that little something you scratched out of my head.

[Shug giggles]

Lookee there.

Shug Avery.

You did that.

[piano playing]

[band playing blues music]

[Shug humming]

[guest 1 chuckling]

[guest 2] Ooh!

♪ Sister ♪

♪ You’ve been on my mind ♪

♪ Oh, sister ♪

♪ We’re two of a kind ♪

♪ So, sister ♪

♪ I’m keeping my eyes on you ♪

[guests chuckling]

♪ I bet you think I don’t know nothing ♪

♪ But singing the blues ♪

♪ Oh, sister Have I got news for you ♪

♪ I’m something ♪

♪ I hope you think That you’re something too ♪

[guests] Aw.

♪ Oh, scufflin’ ♪

♪ I been up that lonesome road ♪

♪ And I’ve seen A lot of suns going down ♪

♪ Oh, but trust me ♪

♪ No lowlife’s Gonna run me around ♪

♪ So let me tell you something Sister ♪

♪ Remember your name ♪


♪ No twister gonna steal Your stuff away ♪

♪ My sister ♪

♪ We sho’ ain’t got A whole lot of time ♪

Turn it around, fellas.

♪ So shake your shimmy, sister ♪

[guests cheering, laughing]

♪ ‘Cause, honey The Shug is feeling ♪

♪ Fine ♪

♪ Oh, yeah ♪

[phone ringing]


Who? [cork pops, guests cheer]

Miss Celie.

You got a call.

Who is it? Don’t know but sounds urgent.

Evening. This is Celie.

Sweet, loving God, we thank you for the life of Mr. Alfonso Harris.

And we thank you for his daughter Celie, who we welcome back home.

And likewise, we thanks you for his wife, dear sister Mary Ellen, who we are praying for in her hour of bereavement.

Mr. Alfonso was a man.

A hardworking man.

Now, sure, he was difficult and, uh, stubborn.

Now you’re preaching.

[person in church shushes]

And I’d be a liar if I told you for certain that Mr. Alfonso made it to the pearly gates.

[congregation] Mmhmm.

[Sofia chuckles]

[reverend] What I do know is we must forgive, and ask forgiveness from others, or God will be hardpressed to show his mercy toward us.

[congregation murmurs]

[reverend] So don’t tarry, church.

For no one knows what day, what hour, we will see our Father again.



[congregation] Amen.

Ezekiel, if you will.

[piano playing]

[Mary Ellen] God bless you.

[First Lady] Good to see you.

God bless you.

[Mary Ellen] Bless you.

Really enjoyed your sermon, Pa.

Especially what you what you said about forgiveness and–

Ain’t the time right now. Reverend’s busy.

God bless you, baby.

God bless you.

Good to see you. Good to see you.

Meet me at the store. I got something to tell you.

What’s this for?

The place is yours.

He didn’t leave it to you?

No, ma’am. It wasn’t his to give.

You didn’t know?

We wasn’t quite on speaking terms.

Well, when I went to settle Alfonso’s will, I found out from the lawyer that this wasn’t his land nor his store.

Your real pa built this place.

Alfonso… was my pa.

No, ma’am.

When your daddy died, your ma married Alfonso.

After she died, Alfonso took over the store.

Your real daddy even put you and your sister’s name on the deed.

That’s how I know this here land belongs to y’all.

I had a ma… and a pa that loved me.

Dear God… I hope this place brings you and your sister comfort.

[Young Celie and Young Nettie chuckling]

[Young Celie] ♪ Hey, sister Whatcha gon’ do? ♪

[Young Nettie] ♪ Going down by the river Gonna play with you ♪

[both chuckling]


I got ours house back.

Now what’s I gonna do?

[Mama] I want you to feel the needle.

Feel it?

I want you to feel the cloth.


[swing music playing]

♪ All I need’s a needle And a spool of thread ♪

♪ Got about a million patterns In my head ♪

♪ All the ladies’ legs Are gonna love to dance ♪

♪ When they In Miss Celie’s pants ♪

♪ Gabardine, velveteen Satin or lace ♪

♪ Buttons and bows All over the place ♪

♪ Styles that’ll make you Feel like a queen ♪

♪ That woman’s a wiz With the sewing machine ♪

♪ Who dat say? Who dat say? Who dat? ♪

♪ Who dat say? Who dat say? Who dat? ♪

♪ Who dat say? What you say? ♪

♪ In Miss Celie’s pants ♪

♪ Who dat say? Who dat say? Who dat? ♪

♪ Lookit here, get out my way ♪

♪ Sofia’s back And I’m here to stay ♪

♪ In Miss Celie’s pants ♪

♪ Girl, you swept out The memories ♪

♪ Filled this place with joy ♪

♪ In this big ol’ store ♪

♪ Got your sewing machines ♪

♪ Mirrors shiny clean ♪

♪ And a fitting room ♪

♪ Smell like sweet perfume ♪

♪ That man might have ♪

♪ Done you wrong ♪

♪ And brought you to tears ♪

♪ And made you believe That you’re not strong ♪

♪ Strong ♪

♪ But look ♪

♪ I said look ♪

♪ Are you looking? ♪

We all looking, honey.

♪ Look who’s wearing the pants ♪

♪ Now! ♪

[ensemble scatting, cheering]

♪ Hey, who dat say? ♪

♪ Who dat say? Who dat say? Who dat? ♪

♪ Who dat say? Who dat say? Who dat? ♪

♪ Who dat say? ♪

♪ Who dat say? What you say? ♪

♪ In Miss Celie’s pants ♪


Clean this up for me, Jimmy. [Harpo sighs]

Thank you. Where you going?


Hey, hey. Don’t mind if I do.

[Sofia] Uhuhuhuhuh. [sighs]

Sorry about that. That’s okay. I know.

[chuckles] Hey, hey, hey!

You need to do something about your pa.

He been in here every night this week causing a ruckus.

I know. I’ll take care of it. Hold on.

All right. [cymbal crashing]

Oh, come on. I’ll count you in.

No, no, no.

[Mister] And five…

No, no, no. That’s not happening tonight.

Hey, hey, Son. How you doing?

Not this time.

We about to play a little set.

You’re fitting to embarrass yourself.

I’ll count you Hey! Oh!


You all right? Ah, it’s all right.

They don’t know about no good music no how. [chuckles]

Get off the stage.

I used to break hearts back in my day.

Women used to toss off their drawers.

Hey, hey! Come on. [crowd clamoring]

Tell ’em, boy. Tell ’em who I was.


Could’ve been in Shug’s band if I wanted to.

If I didn’t have to farm… I’m so sorry.

…my grandaddy’s land [grunts] Oh! All right. Sofi

[Harpo] Come on.

[Mister grunts]

[Harpo] Come on. Come on. Get up.

[Mister] All right. All right.

Get off. [grunting]

Come on. It’s time to go home.


I had my doubts… about you building that juke.

But you done good, boy.

You done good. [breathing heavily]

Pop, you, um

You all right?

‘Course. Yeah?

Why you got your arm around me like I’m old?


[Mister] I can get home by myself.

[panting, grunting]

[thunder crashes]

[Celie] Until you do right by me, everything you think about gon’ crumble.

[Mister crying] I’ll do right.

Dear God, I’ll do right.

I’ll do right.

I’ll do right.

Hey. Hey.

You all right, Albert?

Albert, you all right? I’m fine.

[stammers] Uh, yeah. Yes, sir.

Uh, I fell asleep looking at the stars is all.

You take care of yourself.

Go on.

[Nettie] Dear Celie, the letters you’ve sent fill my days with joy.

I know it must’ve been hard finding me.

We’ve had to relocate several times over the years.

The British have seized the east.

We lost our passports and documentation when our village was burned.

I’ve decided it’s best that me and your children make our way back home to you.

Celie, we need your help getting back to the States.

As soon as you get this, please go to the immigration office to prove our citizenship.

You’re our only hope.

Mr. Johnson?

[Mister sighs]

[immigration officer] Even if we could find them, which I doubt, it’ll cost you hundreds to get ’em here from Africa.

Well, uh… I thanks ya.


Say, uh… I gots me some land.

I could sell some of it and get the money.

Think that’ll help?

Well, that would definitely help.

My secretary can start the paperwork.

[jazz playing on radio]

[knocking on door]

We’re closed.

[Mister] Evening.

Hate to bother you.

This gon’ sound odd, but, um… I came to buy some pants.

I can come back later if it’s too much trouble.

I also brought you this.

[Celie] Hmm.


[radio clicks off]

See something you like?

[sighs] Oh, uh…

Why don’t I just take one of the ones that no one else buys? [chuckles]

Help your business out some.

You… [sighs]

You looking nice.

You sure you wanna be seen in these?

[chuckles] I don’t mind.

Give folks something to laugh at.

[sighs] I best be locking up.

It’s getting late.

That it is.

Thank you.

Say, uh… maybe someday, uh, you and me, we could, uh– I don’t know, if, uh if you feel like it sometime…

Let’s just us be friends.


Yeah. [chuckles]


[bell jingling]

[chuckles] Hmm.

[gasps, sighs]



[Celie sighs]

[both chuckling]


[Celie] ♪ I’ve got my sister ♪

♪ I can feel her now ♪

♪ She may not be here ♪

♪ But she’s still mine ♪

♪ And I know ♪

[breathes shakily]

♪ She still love me ♪

♪ I got my chil’ren ♪

♪ I can’t hold them now ♪

♪ They may not be here ♪

♪ But they still mine ♪

♪ And I hope ♪

♪ They know I still love them ♪

[cries, chuckles]

♪ I got my house ♪

♪ It still keep the cold out ♪

♪ I got my chair ♪

♪ When my body can’t hold out ♪

♪ Got my hands doing good Like they s’posed to ♪


♪ Showing my heart To the folks ♪

♪ That I’m close to ♪

♪ Got my eyes Though they don’t see As far now ♪

♪ They see more ’bout how things Really are now ♪

[chuckles, breathes deeply]





♪ I’m… ♪

♪ I’m gonna ♪

♪ Take a deep breath ♪

♪ I’m gonna hold my head up ♪

♪ I’m gonna put My shoulders back ♪

♪ And look you straight In the eye ♪

♪ I’m gonna flirt With somebody ♪

♪ When they walk by ♪

♪ I’m gonna sing out ♪

♪ Sing out ♪

♪ I believe I have inside of me ♪

♪ Everything that I need To live a bountiful life ♪

♪ With all the love Alive in me ♪

♪ I’ll stand as tall As the tallest tree ♪

♪ And I’m thankful for Every day that I’m given ♪

♪ Both the easy and hard ones ♪

♪ I’m living ♪

♪ But most of all ♪

♪ I’m thankful for ♪

♪ Loving who I really am ♪

[breathing heavily]

♪ I’m beautiful ♪


♪ Yes ♪

[chuckles, sniffles]

♪ I’m beautiful ♪

[chuckles, breathes shakily]

♪ And I’m ♪

♪ Here! ♪

♪ Oh, yes, I am ♪

[birds chirping]

[footsteps approaching]

[exhales sharply]

[piano playing]


♪ Speak, Lord ♪

♪ Speak to me ♪

♪ Speak, Lord ♪

♪ Speak to me ♪

♪ Speak, Lord ♪

♪ Speak to me, yeah ♪

Hi, Pa.

Go on.


♪ Maybe God is ♪

♪ Tryin’ to tell you somethin’ ♪

♪ Maybe God is ♪

♪ Tryin’ to tell you somethin’ ♪


♪ Maybe God is ♪

♪ Tryin’ to tell you ♪

♪ Somethin’ ♪

[sighs] [Shug sobbing]

[indistinct chatter, laughter]

[Mister] Oh, look at this.

My Lord.

[Celie chuckles]

I can’t believe you wore those.

Oh, I thought it’d help scare away some of the flies.

That ain’t all it gon’ scare away. [laughs]

You shut up now.

Oh, Lord. Hey, Pop. [laughs]

[Mister laughs] Hey.

My Celie. [chuckles]

Hey. How you doing?

We got lots of food.

Why you put my pop in them pants? Hey, Miss Shug.

He asked for those.

Yeah, I did ask for these. Yeah, that’s right.

Everybody look at ’em. That’s right.

Now, who that coming?

Half of the town already here.

I thought I’d invite a few folks.

I hope you don’t mind.

[Celie] We got enough room.

Y’all slide over.

♪ Hey, sister ♪

♪ Whatcha gon’ do? ♪

♪ Going down by the river Gon’ play with you ♪

♪ Sho’ nuff sun gon’ shine ♪

♪ Gonna be grown ladies Of the marrying kind ♪

[both] ♪ Gonna be all right ♪

♪ Gonna be all right ♪

♪ Right ♪

[chuckles, breathes shakily]



[Celie crying]


[crying] My Nettie.

[Nettie] Mmm.

I’ve missed you.

[Nettie chuckling]

These are your children, Olivia and Adam.

[Celie chuckles, inhales sharply]

[Celie breathes heavily]


[Olivia] It It us.

[Adam] It is us, Mama.

[Celie cries]

We love you. [Celie whimpers, crying]

Olivia. [crying]

[Celie] Adam. Adam. [crying]

[Adam] This is my wife, Abena.

[Abena exclaims, kisses]

Your presence blesses us, Mama.

You have grandchildren.

[Abena chuckles] [Celie crying]

My family home.

[slow piano music playing]

♪ Dear God ♪

♪ Dear stars ♪

♪ Dear trees ♪

♪ Dear sky ♪

♪ Dear peoples ♪

♪ Dear everything ♪

♪ Dear God ♪


♪ God is inside me ♪

♪ And everyone else ♪

♪ That was or ever will be ♪

♪ I came into this world With God ♪

♪ And when I finally Looked inside ♪

♪ I found it ♪

♪ Just as close As my breath is to me ♪

♪ Rising ♪ ♪ Rising ♪

♪ Rising ♪

♪ Like the sun ♪

♪ Is the hope That sets us free ♪

♪ Your heartbeat ♪

♪ Make my heart beat ♪

[all] ♪ When we share love ♪

♪ Like a blade of corn ♪

♪ Like a honeybee ♪

♪ Like a waterfall ♪

♪ All a part of me ♪

♪ Like the color purple ♪

♪ Where do it come from? ♪

♪ Now my eyes are open ♪

♪ Look what God has done ♪

♪ It take a grain of love ♪

♪ Grain of love ♪

♪ To make a mighty tree ♪

♪ To make a mighty Mighty tree ♪

♪ Even the smallest voice ♪

♪ Smallest voice ♪

♪ Can make a harmony ♪

♪ Harmony ♪

♪ Like a drop of water ♪

♪ Like a drop of water ♪

♪ In the river high ♪

♪ It can make the river high ♪

♪ There are miracles ♪

♪ There are miracles ♪

♪ Look what God has done ♪

♪ I don’t think us feel Old at all ♪

♪ I think this is The youngest us ever felt ♪

♪ Oh ♪

♪ Amen ♪

[Fantasia Barrino] ♪ Ooh, ah ♪


♪ This is no way to start The story of us ♪

♪ Damn, I miss your face ♪

♪ These moments so hard Passed us all ♪

♪ But we always make our way ♪

♪ Just when I feel that I need to feel something ♪

♪ A feeling pulls me up ♪

♪ Deep in my heart And amongst these lost lands ♪

♪ I kept my faith in us ♪

♪ No way No days I didn’t think About you ♪

♪ On my soul You’re the reason I made it through ♪

♪ Every drop of a tear Every ounce of my heart ♪

♪ You’re the reason I’m here ♪

♪ Oh, I… ♪

[chorus] ♪ I… ♪

♪ Oh, I… ♪

[chorus] ♪ I… ♪

♪ All I ever needed ♪

[chorus] ♪ Ever ♪

[Barrino] ♪ In this world ♪

♪ My superpower ♪

[chorus] ♪ Power ♪

♪ My fight ♪

[chorus] ♪ Fight ♪

♪ Mmm, my love ♪

[chorus] ♪ Love ♪

[Barrino] ♪ To be alive ♪

[echoing] ♪ I… ♪

[echoing] ♪ I… ♪

[echoing] ♪ I… ♪


♪ No way No days I didn’t think About you ♪

♪ On my soul You’re the reason I made it through ♪

♪ Every drop, every tear Every ounce of my heart ♪

♪ You’re the reason I’m here ♪

♪ And I… ♪

♪ [chorus] I… ♪

♪ Oh, I… ♪

♪ [chorus] I… ♪

♪ All I ever needed ♪

♪ All I ever needed ♪

♪ In this world ♪

♪ My superpower ♪

[chorus] ♪ Power ♪

♪ My fight ♪

[chorus] ♪ Fight ♪

♪ Mmm, my love ♪

[chorus] ♪ Love ♪

♪ To be alive ♪

♪ It was always I ♪

♪ It’s not about Where I’ve been ♪

♪ It’s not about Where I’ve been ♪

♪ It’s about Where I’m trying to go ♪

♪ By the time I’m golden sand ♪

♪ I want the world to know ♪

♪ Ooh, I was here ♪

♪ I was right here in the darkest hours ♪

♪ You believed in me Till I believed in you ♪

♪ All this time, your love My love for me ♪

♪ Through us ♪

♪ I just wanna kiss your face ♪

♪ I just wanna hold you tight ♪


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