Enzian closes out its Cult Classics series for the year with Prince's 'Under the Cherry Moon'


Riding the stratospheric highs of commercial and critical acclaim for 1984’s Purple Rain – both the film and the soundtrack – Prince was given the equivalent of a blank check for a follow-up film by the suits at Warner Bros., salivating over the notion of Purple Rain II. Prince, being Prince, smirked enigmatically and penciled himself in to both star and direct this film, Orson Welles–style. Prince emerged with a sprawling, ambitious, artistic left turn – a black-and-white film set in the French Riviera, evoking the spirit of old Hollywood glamour, chock-full of hallucinatory visuals and humor, and, bizarrely, no performance of “Kiss,” the hit song from the accompanying soundtrack album, Parade. This was Under the Cherry Moon.

Cherry Moon is the story of Christopher Tracy (Prince) and Tricky (Jerome Benton), gigolo brothers who bum around Europe, seducing and cheating rich mademoiselles. But things don’t really go according to plan when Christopher falls in love with a target, and the movie spirals out of control from there. Sadly, it bombed upon release. But by then, Prince had already moved on; stung by the critics, seemingly bored by filmmaking, he would return to music, sealing himself away in the studio to work on what would become his most sprawling and solitary recorded work – Sign O’ the Times. With Purple Rain having already done a memorial theatrical run, now’s the perfect time for Cherry Moon to rise from the vaults of Paisley Park. And y’know what? It’s aged damn well. It’s a vibrant, beautifully shot piece of filmmaking, and Prince is absolute magic to watch. He’s got the look …

9:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 27 | Enzian Theater, 1300 S. Orlando Ave., Maitland | 407-629-1088 | enzian.org | $8