Saturday, May 2, 2009

Rock Movies I Love: Purple Rain


To say I love this movie is an incredible understatement. I went steady with this movie. I went to first, second and third base with this movie, letting it do naughty things to me in the dark. Now, we're just good friends - we may hook up if there's nothing else to watch on TV. I saw Purple Rain 6 times in the movie theater - my personal record at the time - and since it was a Christmas present countless times on home video. However, to explain why I have such intense feelings for Purple Rain, I have to recount my first time - that is the first time I saw it in a movie theater. I remember I had to wait in line. It was a very long line of people of different races and ages. Everyone seemed to be in a good mood and geniunely excited. When I finally got inside the theater, every seat was packed. I overheard conversations of people who were seeing the movie their third and fourth time. The house lights dimmed. There were no sneak previews or trailers for other movies. When the Warner Brothers logo appeared on the screen, people started cheering like it was a concert. I couldn't help but look around in amazement. At that moment, I knew that I was experiencing something weird and special. "Ladies and gentlemen, The Revolution," an offscreen voice announced. And there he was. His petite silhouette bathed in purple light and smoke.

Let's pause here for a second. Before this moment of purple enchantment, Prince disgusted me. Maybe, disgust is too strong a word but I just didn't get him. My first recollections of Prince was during his "For You" period when he had straight, very long hair, wore leotards and (gasp) high-heel boots. It was my first glimpse of his androgynous look and it creeped me out. It was too much for my 8-year-old brain to wrap around.

Six years later, and I was in a movie theater watching the same man with a slightly different look. He had a shorter hairdo, and the leotard was replaced with tight yet flattering pants. (But he still wore high-heeled boots.) I was different. I wasn't a kid anymore. I was in puberty and watching him throughtout the course of this movie writhe, shimmy, shake his little ass and (gasp)act - did something to me. To put it succinctly, he turned me on. Prince in Purple Rain brought about my sexual awakening. This is bit of an exaggeration, however, Purple Rain provides me with a great deal of titulation. And the music isn't bad either.

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