“Cary Elwes was in town the other night! You prolly best know him as Westley in The Princess Bride. He was promoting his new book, so the local indie theater had weekend long showings of The Princess Bride. I was there at the first one that included Elwes introducing the film. I later found out that same night NPH was nearby promoting his book, but I’d already gotten my tickets for Bride. Let’s hope my personalization request on my book order went thru. But I digress. Elwes took a minute to plug his book, thank the theater and book store, and then said he had two things to say: 1-Have fun storming the castle. 2-As you wish. Okay, so a bit minimal on the appearance, but it was still a chance to see The Princess Bride on a big screen with a sold out crowd. That’s always gonna be a win.
I don’t remember when I first saw this film. It’s one of those that I heard talked about and quoted so often that by the time I did finally see it for the first time, it didn’t feel like the first time. It felt like I’d seen it countless times before. It was like I’d always known it.
For me, the best thing about this movie is the dialog. Let’s face it, the story itself is a little cliche (and we won’t even discuss what it says about gender roles), and while the characters are very endearing, they’re not particularly multidimensional. The fun is in the unexpected, the silly situations they often talk their way out of. You’d be hard pressed to find a more quotable movie than this. “”Inconceivable!”” “”As you wish”” “”My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die”” “”Anybody want a peanut?”” “”Have fun storming the castle”” “”Never start a land war in Asia”” It goes on. Watching it again, there’s so many more great lines that I didn’t even remember. Once in a rare while, I describe watching a good comedy in a theater as there being a constant low buzz of laughter. This time, it was constant loud spurts of laughter, every other minute. Basically as soon as the sound quieted enough to be able to hear the next line, it started up again. Inconceivable!
Oh and I don’t recommend ever reading the book. I kind of blocked out from my memory how boring it was, until I stumbled on an old Facebook status where I lamented that I was reading it and didn’t want to be reading it anymore, except I hate leaving books unfinished. It takes a more historic approach to things, and none of the magic that makes the movie special is there. This movie really is something truly special.