The Color Purple

By: Jessica Kinder


The book was written by Alice Walker in 1982
Produced into a film in 1985 by Steven Spielberg



1) Plot- Writing of the Letters. In the novel Celie writes letters back to Nettie, but in the movies Celie does not write back.
Significance: This difference is significant because in the book the writing of the letters back in forth between Celie and Nettie portrays their strong relationship and how close they are. In the movie the relationship is not portrayed as strongly as in the book.

2) Theme: In the novel Shug asked, “How your god like?” and in the movie Shug and Celie do not even talk about god.
Significance: God plays a big role in book because a lot of Celie’s letters are addressed to God, but in the movie it is shown that Celie believes in God but nothing more. This is a significant difference because God plays a part in Celie's character.

3) Plot: In the novel Mister never catches Nettie, but in the movie Mr. Albert Johnson (Mister) does catch her when she is running.
Significance: This is a major difference in the plot. In the movie when she gets caught changes the whole meaning of her finally getting away and escaping the torture. In the book she captures the moment of freedom, but in the movie she is caught so it does not have the same type of impact on the character as it does in the book.

4) Character: In the novel it was clear that the relationship between Celie and Shug was a lesbian love affair. In the movie there was a slight hint about their relationship.
Significance: This is a major difference in the shape of the characters, because obviously in the society back when the book was written in it was frowned upon to have same sex relationships so in the book it was quite the controversy and for the director not to portray this relationship really cut out some of the major points the book was trying to show. I also think that maybe the director did not show that in the movie do to the time period the movie came out in because same sex marriage is still a controversy today.

5) Detail: In the movie, the camera focused a lot on purple flowers, and in the book the purple flowers were barely represented.
Significance: In the movie the symbolism that purple represents a time of peace and tranquility. The purple flowers were seen when Celie and Nettie were playing together before they were eventually separated. But, in the book the purple flowers were not mentioned quite as much as they were showed in the movie. Alice Walker showed peace and tranquility through the characters with her words in the letters but in the movie the director portrayed it through the purple flowers.