It’s 1985 and Alice Walker is at the cinema to watch the first screening of the film The Colour Purple, based on her novel of the same name.
After the first few scenes she is perplexed. Sequences that are essential to her have been removed and the whole film oozes sentimentality. How could it happen that that story she wrote holed up in the countryside in total solitude, remembering her grandfather’s stories, has been transformed into a pathetic film shot by a white man?
As the frames of the film continue to scroll, Alice searches herself, her Colour Purple, to rediscover her reasons and her characters, and begins to retrace her life: writing the novel, published in 1982 and which soon became a success, her childhood spent in poverty, her excellent grades in her studies, her activism, her marriage to a white Jewish lawyer, and the hatred she received from the Ku Klux Klan. What revives her and brings her back to reality is a long, warm applause: at the film's final scenes, with the lights back on, the audience is on its feet, moved, and she finally smiles.