Thursday, April 15, 2010

The Princess Bride (1987) is an eighties movie that has elements to appeal to everyone. There is love, action, adventure, humor, and intrigue. The movie begins with an old man reading a story to his grandson. The book is The Princess Bride, and the movie unfolds from there. The main characters are Buttercup and Wesley, a maiden and the farm boy who falls in love with her. Unfortunately, Wesley is captured by the Dread Pirate Roberts and presumed dead, inducing Buttercup to marry Prince Humperdinck. However, true love prevails when it turns out that Wesley has merely become the Dread Pirate Roberts. He attempts to rescue Buttercup from the clutches of Humperdinck and a band of kidnappers.

The side characters in this film are what make it enjoyable for me. The rhyming giant Fezzik and his adoring friend Inigo Montoya are amusing and relatable. My favorite character is Billy Crystal as Miracle Max, charged with bringing Wesley back to life after Humperdinck’s sidekick Count Rugen. Coincidently, Count Rugen was also Inigo Montoya’s father’s murderer. Inigo’s search for revenge on the six-fingered man who killed his father pervades throughout the movie.

This film is distinctly eighties because of the appeal it holds for all audiences. The Princess Bride became an instant cult classic, and its relevance will continue for multiple generations. My friends who were not even alive when it was released still quote “Anybody want a peanut?”, and there are countless t-shirts with “Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die.”

I would recommend this film to anyone that hasn’t seen it, as it has elements of multiple genres. It is definitely worth two hours of time, if only to understand the countless references made to it.

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