The Color Purple

The Color Purple (1985)

21 mistakes

Other mistake: Mister cooks Shug Avery a breakfast of grits, biscuits and ham, and takes it to her room. She throws the breakfast against the wall. The breakfast leave a bright yellow and bright red stain on the wall. There was nothing on the tray that could have left those colors on the wall.

Revealing mistake: Oprah Winfrey's character is supposed to be knocked unconscious, but as she is lying on the ground, the wind blows her skirt up and she reaches down, pushing her dress back down.

Continuity mistake: Mister's tie changes from red to blue when he asks for Nettie, and back to red when he inspects Celie.


Continuity mistake: After Harpo and Sophia are married, Harpo leans in to kiss Sophia but she is whisked away by relatives and he turns away. In the next shot we get a side view of Harpo and he is still leaning in to kiss her after he had already turned away in the previous shot.

Audio problem: In the scene where Albert tries to make a move on Nettie she tells him that she has to go to school. Her mouth isn't moving at any time.

Continuity mistake: When the mayor slaps Sofia her two children change positions between shots. When she knocks him out the girl disappears.


Continuity mistake: When Celie tries on one of Shug's dresses a record is playing. While the song is still on we see the record player again and the label has changed. Then Shug turns the record around, and now the label is the one from the beginning.


Continuity mistake: Before Squeak hits Sofia she hands a tray with a bottle to Harpo. He hardly catches the bottle before it falls down, but when the camera angle changes he is holding the bottle upright.


Continuity mistake: When Celie is combing Shug Avery's hair while she is in the tub, you see Albert creeping up the stairs looking to see what is going on. In the background you hear his father shouting at the house, wondering if anyone is home. At the time Albert is at the top of the stairs he is wearing a reddish shirt. The next shot shows him walking out the door to meet his father, but now he is wearing a green shirt.

Revealing mistake: Right after young Celie gives birth, take a look at the baby after it is handed to her. It is obviously a stiff doll.

Factual error: When Celie is leaving Albert, she is riding in the back of the car with Shug. As the car drives away down the dirt driveway you can see the telephone pole and electricity wires at the end of the driveway. Not unusual now, but in rural Georgia in the 1930's, it would have been impossible.

Revealing mistake: When Celie is having her baby, and her sister brings the kettle of boiling water into the house, as she gets ready to pour the boiling water, she places her left hand on the "boiling" kettle. If it were really boiling water, she would have burned her hand in a second.


Continuity mistake: While Albert is throwing Nettie out of the yard, the sky changes. First, you can see the sun, then the sun is covered by a bunch of clouds, then the clouds are gone.

Revealing mistake: How can Oprah ride around in a one of a kind 1928 or 1929 Model "A" Ford Deluxe Phaeton? This car that is used in the movie is obviously a '28 or '29 model because it has the short chromed radiator shell ('30 & '31s had a stainless steel radiator shell). If you look closely enough you will also see tell-tale signs of it being a '28 or '29 model. The first year for the Deluxe Phaeton was 1930. Ford continued making it to almost the '40s, 1938. The Model "A" Ford Deluxe Phaetons were made in 1930 and 1931. 6,175 units total. The dead give away that it is, in fact, partly a Deluxe Phaeton is that it is a two door vehicle. The Standard Phaetons all had four doors. Other things that make it a '28 or '29 model are a dished steering wheel w/small chrome horn button, 15:00 oval Stewart Warner speedometer with trip set showing 50,840+ miles, chrome map light is visible in the center of the solid chrome instrument cluster (no match striker flutes as in '30 & '31 models), conical shaped headlights instead of spherical as in '30 & '31 models, small rounded edged hubcaps on 21 inch wheels ('30 & '31s had smaller wheels - 19 inch with larger hub caps), and cylindrical shaped taillights. There were no oblong instrument clusters in Deluxe Phaetons because the first ones were made mid-year 1930. No oval speedometers. It is a really nice looking, well restored, car but it is a one of a kind Model "A". No Deluxe Phaetons were ever produced in 1928 or 1929.

Plot hole: The kids and the men are decorating Easter eggs and Ceilie is stuffing a turkey. Shug gets the mail and takes Ceilie upstairs and hands her the letter. When she turns the letter over the date is July 10. But when she reads the letter she says the date is April 18, 1935. So if it's July, how is it Easter?


Continuity mistake: In the scene when Celie offers Albert's father a glass of water, and she spits in it, in some shots it's ice cold, but in others it is transparent. Cold or warm? It seems we have two options.

Continuity mistake: The letters that spell "sky" on the piece of waxed paper change throughout the whole movie.

Continuity mistake: In the scene where Shug and Celie start kissing Celie covers her smile with one hand in a wide shot but with both hands in close-up.


Continuity mistake: When Sofia comes to her in-laws' house for the first time Celie offers her a glass of lemonade. She empties it completely, but when she gives it back to Celie it's almost full again.


Continuity mistake: When Celie is shaving Albert, the "patterns" of cream on his face change from shot to shot.