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Purple Rain

570 customer reviews

Additional DVD options Edition Discs
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(Feb 03, 2004)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Purple Rain (DVD)

Rock star Prince makes a spectacular feature film debut in this highly autobiographical blockbuster that won both an Oscar and a Grammy award.Headstrong, vulnerable young musician The Kid (Prince) struggles with his own inner demons and with his alcoholic father who beats his mother. But the madness infects his music, fueling a sound that transforms the struggling, young rocker into a star.


When Prince's dazzling and dynamic Purple Rain (movie and soundtrack album) and the hypnotic hit single "When Doves Cry" exploded onto the pop-culture scene in 1984, it seemed there was nothing the purple one couldn't do. The film is basically a feature-length music video, but no musician has ever had a better big-screen showcase for his many talents. The plot is really just a theme (about the son of an abusive father struggling not to continue the pattern) upon which to hang some of Prince's most dazzling songs (including "Let's Go Crazy" and the title tune), and some sizzling live-concert numbers. Apollonia Kotero is ravishing as the romantic interest, and Morris Day and the Time provide some terrific musical competition. Purple Rain is an essential artifact of the mid-'80s pop Zeitgeist. Prince took home an Oscar for the song score. --Jim Emerson

Special Features

  • Soundtrack remastered in Dolby Digital 5.1

Product Details

  • Actors: Prince, Apollonia Kotero, Morris Day, Olga Karlatos, Clarence Williams III
  • Directors: Albert Magnoli
  • Writers: Albert Magnoli, William Blinn
  • Producers: Robert Cavallo, Joseph Ruffalo, Steven Fargnoli
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, Full Screen, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: February 3, 2004
  • Run Time: 111 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (570 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 0790731533
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,130 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Purple Rain" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

97 of 100 people found the following review helpful By M. Gilkey on July 27, 2000
Format: DVD
Leonard Maltin's review missed the main point of this movie. The movie is not primarily about a young musician who "struggles to gain acceptance for his own brand of ... rock music". Instead, the movie is about a man who has acquired his not only some of his father's musical interest and talent, but also his father's emotional instability and occasional abusiveness towards others, especially women. Maltin is correct that Prince's character is sexist and unappealing, but that's crucial to the movie. By playing his character as emotionally unstable, insensitive, and occasionally cruel, Prince de-glamourizes the cool, rebellious rock star image, showing that fame and talent are neither a guaranteed road to happiness nor a good excuse for being cruel to your girlfriend. This movie, rather than being a "soppy story" wrapped around concert footage, is instead genuinely literary. The concert footage is not an excuse for a movie; some of the concert footage is integral to the story. The title song, "Purple Rain", is used very effectively in the movie as a point of conflict between Prince and two of his female bandmates.
This movie, like Quadrophenia, would make a good subject for an English literature class targeted towards aimlessly rebellious under-achievers (rather than the 4.0 GPA high school students that most English literature classes are designed for).
[This review is based on the VHS version of the movie.]
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68 of 75 people found the following review helpful By DEAN M. Dent on April 22, 2004
Format: DVD
I remember when I recently saw Jay and Silent Bob Strikes Back,Jay showed his affinity towards Morris Day and the Time.Then some teenagers called Purple Rain "a crappy 80's movie".Although most of Y generation view Purple Rain like the second coming of Grease 2,Purple Rain rocked back in '84 with people actually dancing in the isles.
This movie finally brought Prince into the mainstream and showed the genius that he was.Although he'd been making records since 1978,he made his mark with such albums as Dirty Mind, Controversy,and 1999(his breakout album with his first top ten hit Little Red Corvette)but only to a limited R&B and underground market.But once Purple Rain hit,things were never the same.The movie also brought Morris Day and The Time to the mainstream which unfortunately they would soon break up to never enjoy the fruits.
The movie is pretty much about a musician called The Kid (Prince) who dreams of making it despite his troubled homelife and a rival band, The Time.The movie has it's fair share of bad acting as well as misogyny ("That ain't Lake Minnitonka")it's the musical numbers as well as Morris Day's comic timing that steals the show.The music still sounds fresh, especially the minimalist When Doves Cry which could even be released today.
Hopefully Warner brothers will release a 20th anniversary edition DVD with loads of extras as well as deleted scenes which were featured in the trailer.And with Prince's comeback in 2004 including his Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame induction, Grammy performance and tour,it would really be the year of Prince.
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34 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Brett D. Cullum VINE VOICE on August 5, 2004
Format: DVD
Features on this two-disc set include:

1.85:1 Anamorphic Widescreen

English DD5.1 Surround

French DD1.0 Mono

English, French and Spanish subtitles

Audio Commentary with Director Albert Magnoli, Producer Robert Cavallo and Cinematographer Donald E. Thorin

All-new documentary on the Minneapolis music scene, the importance of the First Avenue club and Prince?s career prior to Purple Rain

All-new documentary on the making of the movie and the Academy Award winning music

All-new documentary on the impact of the movie and music on Pop Culture, the response from Prince?s fans and the enduring legacy of Purple Rain

Music Videos:

Let's go Crazy - Prince

take me with u - Prince

When Doves Cry - Prince

I Would Die 4 U/Baby I'm a Star - Prince

Purple Rain - Prince

Jungle Love - The Time

The Bird - The Time

Sex Shooter - Apollonia 6

TV Special : The 1984 MTV Premiere Party

Theatrical Trailer : Purple Rain, Graffiti Bridge and Under the Cherry Moon

This is a vast improvement on the bare bones FULLSCREEN version of PURPLE RAIN out there. Go ahead and trade those in! This looks like the real deal. Prince has never been more electric, and the film is pretty good. The music is what makes it! And it's a great piece of 80s nostalgia to boot. I'm putting on my purple raincoat, my hoop earring, and sitting down to watch a simpler time when all we had to worry about was if Wendy and Lisa were happy being in the Revolution! If you own one Prince movie ... this one's it!
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51 of 60 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 9, 1999
Format: DVD
Don't get me wrong, I LOVE Purple Rain and Prince 's (the artist) music, but this DVD was kind of disappointing. The video quality of the transfer looks pretty good for its age, but why isn't there a widescreen version? The production notes that Warner puts on their DVDs are annoying and glare off the TV. Oh, and a trailer. I know this isn't a special edition, but there was so much stuff that could have been used. I guess you get what you pay for though. The movie gets 5 stars, but the DVD gets a 2/5.
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