Purple Rain, The Movie (1984)

We have a new musical conductor for the month of May. John over at Sound of One Hand Typing gets to pick our themes for this month. Our assignment for this week is "In honor of the debut of the Sony Betamax recorder (1975), songs from movies from the 1980’s and 1990’s."

Well, it just so happens that I was going to post this for my Soundtrack Saturday, but I didn’t get around to putting together my post. So here it is Monday, and John is giving me another chance to get done. Since I’m still in an 80’s frame of mind (which is not a bad thing) I’ve chosen the 1984 movie, Purple Rain. 

The Plot:

The Kid is the talented but troubled frontman of his Minneapolis-based band, The Revolution. To escape his difficult home life—his father verbally and physically abuses him and his mother—he spends his days rehearsing and his nights performing at the First Avenue nightclub. The Revolution, the flashy Morris Day and his group The Time, and Dez Dickerson and his group The Modernaires hold the nightclub's three house band slots. Morris, aware that The Revolution's guitarist Wendy and keyboardist Lisa are frustrated that The Kid is unwilling to play their compositions, lobbies Billy Sparks, the club's owner, to replace The Revolution with a girl group which Morris is already forming. He targets the Kid's girlfriend Apollonia—an aspiring singer and new arrival in Minneapolis—to lead his group, and tries to persuade her that The Kid won't help her because he's too focused on himself. She eventually joins Morris's group, which Morris names Apollonia 6. When she reveals her newfound partnership to the Kid, he becomes furious and slaps her, as his father had struck him earlier.

At the club, The Kid responds to the internal band strife, the pressure to draw more crowds, and his strained private life with the uncomfortably personal "Darling Nikki". His performance publicly humiliates Apollonia, who runs off in tears, and angers both Morris and Billy, worsening his situation. Billy confronts the Kid, castigating him for bringing his personal life onto the stage and warning him that he's wasting his musical talent as his father did. Apollonia 6 successfully debuts, and Billy warns the Kid that his First Avenue slot is at risk. The Kid seizes Apollonia from a drunken Morris and the two argue and fight; Apollonia then abandons him. Returning home, he finds the house in tatters, with his mother nowhere to be found. When he turns on the basement light, his father—who had been lurking in the basement with a loaded handgun—shoots himself in the head. Frenzied after a night of torment, the Kid tears apart the basement to release his frustration, only to find a large box of his father's musical compositions. The next morning, the Kid picks up a cassette tape of one of Wendy and Lisa's compositions, 

That night at First Avenue, all is quiet in The Revolution's dressing room until The Time stops by to taunt the Kid about his family life. Once on stage, the Kid a rhythm track named "Slow Groove", and begins to compose.announces that he will be playing "a song the girls in the band wrote", dedicated to his father—revealed to be "Purple Rain". As the emotional song ends, the Kid rushes from the stage and out the back door of the club, intending to ride away on his motorcycle. However, before he can mount it, he realizes that his new song has thrilled the crowd. The Kid returns to the club, with his fellow musicians greeting him with approval and a teary-eyed Apollonia embracing him. The Kid returns to the stage for two encores with The Revolution, to the wild approval of the crowd (even Morris); overlaid scenes show the Kid visiting his father and mother in the hospital and sorting his father's compositions in the basement, accompanied by Apollonia. A montage of all the songs plays as the credits roll.

The Trailer:

Today’s Playlist

  1. Let’s Go Crazy

  2. Take Me With U

  3. The Beautiful Ones

  4. Computer Blue

  5. Darling Nikki

  6. When Doves Cry

  7. I Would Die 4 U

  8. Baby I’m A Star

  9. Purple Rain

Today’s post is part of the Monday’s Music Moves Me blog hop, hosted by X-Mas Dolly, and co-hosted by Stacy Uncorked, Curious as a Cathy. , and Ramblin with AM. Be sure to stop by the hosts and visit the other participants.  If you have a MUSIC* post, feel free to join in the fun! *sorry non-music posts are not permitted in this blog hop.


  1. Excellent! I have never seen that movie or listened to the soundtrack, or even knew about the plot. It's interesting... So, I am enjoying this. I'm not familiar with a number of these songs, either. I stuck to the 80's for my post, too, but went in a different direction.

  2. Mary,

    I don't think we ever saw Purple Rain. I'm not sure which became the hit first, the film or the song but I definitely remember the song and probably was the first one to put Prince on my radar. I can't say that I was a huge fan of his songs but he had talent. The soundtrack has some recognizable songs. I was surprised I knew many of them. Thanks for joining the 4M crew on the dance floor. Have a boogietastic week, my dear!

  3. I hadn't heard all of these. Great set!

  4. Never saw the movie but I love love love the songs on the soundtrack

  5. So very cool. One of the best ever soundtracks.

  6. Some of his music I don't care for but I do like the ones that became quite popular. I never saw this movie which, I read, is a mess. I remember when Jimmy Stewart was on Johnny Carson who asked him about the Oscars and what he thought of Prince. I loved his response.


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