On July 30, 1984, The World-Herald ran a review of Prince's now-legendary rock movie, "Purple Rain."
Staff writer Roger Catlin penned the review, which ran under the headline,"Music Outshines Movie In Prince's 'Purple Rain.'"
The full text of the review is below.
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"Purple Rain" is less a motion picture than it is a concept album.
While other rock artists are content to make two — or three — minute videos to promote their songs for cable services like MTV, the young Minneapolis star Prince has made an entire film.
Not only does it end up promoting his album and the records of a few offshoot groups which perform briefly but he also gets fans to shell out money to see it.
Prince likes to shroud himself and his background in secrecy to create an aura of mystery. It is known that he grew up an only child, spinning fantasies and songs in a basement. He is the son of an ex - musician and lived in a household that sometimes rocked with violence.
His well - wrought music, which fused the line between classic rock and soul, was noticed not only for its craftsmanship but also for its ability to shock _usually through sexually frank lyrics and suggestive stage moves.
Time, Vanity 6
Among the musician's Minneapolis peers are the Time, which plays straightforward dance music behind the amusingly dandified lead - singer Morris Day, and Vanity 6, featuring three girls in underwear who sing suggestive songs.
Vanity's lead singer didn't want to be in the movie, so she was replaced by a newcomer, Apollonia. The lingerie trio has been renamed Apollonia 6.
In the movie, Prince renamed the Kid is a talented local leader of the group The Revolution, played by his real - life group, with guitarist Dez Dickerson replaced by a woman.
The Kid is on stage at a place called the First Avenue a lot, and the fans like him. The rival group, the Time, seeks to rout him with the all - girl underwear trio.
Day has two of the girls but is looking for the lead singer. Just then the beauteous Apollonia blows into town. Day and the Kid both go after her.
She rides on Prince's motorcycle but ends up joining Day's group.
Meanwhile, there are other problems. The girls in Prince's band want to perform a song of their own for once, but he won't take them seriously.
And Prince's parents are no fun they fight all the time. His dad is such an unfortunate soul that he apparently misses when he tries to shoot himself in the head.
All this causes emotional upheaval in the young musician and provides a lot of song material.
It all helps give the songs an emotional basis, however flimsy.
With added length, the songs are much more successful than they were alone on the album.
Yet it all makes for a pretty poor movie in the traditional sense.
There's hardly any dialogue, and when people do talk, the women sound dreadfully monotonal.
The treatment of women is really offensive. One who yells at Day is tossed in a dumpster. At one point, Prince strips and almost abandons Apollonia in a kind of mating ritual. Then he hits her a couple of times, too.
Even the most diehard Prince fans attending the first-day matinee found this a little hard to take.
"Fans Will Like It"
Those who enjoy his music and have seen him in concert will want to take in Prince's "Purple Rain."
A viewer's response to the movie will probably relate directly to how much the viewer likes Prince to begin with.
But, especially with its R rating, this movie isn't likely to gain many converts. And there's absolutely no reason for non-rock fans to attend the overly long video.
Rated R for language and a bit of violence and nudity — apparently the much-ballyhooed sex scenes were almost entirely excised "Purple Rain" is showing at the Cinema Center, Westroads 8 and Q Cinema 6 theaters and the Q Twin West drive-in.