by Ari Roth
Purple Rain is a legendary movie. Featuring easily the greatest original soundtrack of all time, the film was Prince’s breakthrough moment, the point at which he jumped from cult funk auteur to full-on international star, establishing himself as one of the great pop geniuses of the 20th century. On Monday, you and a host of fellow Prince fanatics will get a chance to watch the film on a big screen, at Philly’s own Trocadero Theatre Movie Mondays series, as part of the Awesome Fest summer lineup. Come purify yourselves in the water of Lake Minnetonka, and see for yourself what the controversy is all about.
Centering around Prince and his band, The Revolution, and their battle against Morris Day’s rival group, The Time, the film follows a long and circuitous path, encompassing inter-band strife, domestic unrest, romance, and tons and tons of jams along the way. The acting is cheesy and the plot is a bit silly, but that’s all part of the fun. The real draw, of course, is the music. The movie features each of the nine songs included on the soundtrack album of the same name, and each is a stone cold classic. Here, Prince is at the peak of his powers, synthesizing funk, soul, psychedelia, dance music and more into an intoxicating stew of utter pop perfection. Brimming with hooks, brilliant songwriting, and virtuoso performances, it makes the case for Prince as the greatest, weirdest, most singular pop star of the 1980s, with only perhaps Madonna and Michael Jackson as competitors. Simply put, Purple Rain incredible, and the tunes sound just as great now as they did when they were released in 1984.
Purple Rain will screen this Monday, August 11th at the Trocadero Theatre, located at 1003 Arch St. The doors will open at 6:30 PM, and the movie will roll starting at 8 PM. You must, sadly, be 21 or older in order to attend, but for only a $3 entrance fee, this one is unquestionably worth it for anyone old enough to attend. A big screen showing of The Purple One’s most classic flick, what could be better?