One line review: A magical fairytale full of spirit, humor, and action.
Movie Title: The Princess Bride
Actors: Cary Elwes, Mandy Patinkin, Chris Sarandon, Christopher Guest, Wallace Shawn, Andre the Giant, Fred Savage, Robin Wright Penn, Peter Falk, Peter Cook
Director: Rob Reiner
Genre: Adventure / Comedy
Method of Viewing: Netflix Instant Play
Location of Viewing: Home
Viewing with: Friends in #Jazzmess
Rotten Tomatoes: 95% – One of Reiner’s most entertaining films, effective as a swashbuckling epic, romantic fable, and satire of these genres.
My rating: **** – A Legendary Movie, but with some flaws
My assessment (the first 101 words at least): The Princess Bride is another book turned into a movie. Nearly every time a book is turned into a movie, fans of the book are annoyed that the movie cannot capture the entire scope of the book. However, this movie did exactly what it should. It pulled me in, made me fascinated to find out more about the characters and back story, and made me want to go and buy the book. Each character, from the major to the minor, seem to have their own spirit about them, and the world they live in is full of magic and wonder. Fantastic!
Because the characters in this movie are what sell this movie and this universe so well, I’ll focus on them.
Westley is just a fantastic character. He’s got this strange mix of confidence when with Buttercup, yet uncertainty when apart. Frankly I just loved it whenever he was talking. Every time he states some new fact, or shows some new skill, you just know there’s a fantastic story behind it. Westley certainly serves his function as a hero that every little boy would want to grow up to be like.
Fezzik (Andre the Giant) is the only character I even knew was in this movie before I watched. I was happy to see that he got plenty of screen time and lines. I have to love his blind loyalty to his friends, and how he always seems to come up with simple solutions.
Indigo Montoya is probably the most remembered character of this film if only because he repeated his name so often. I love his confidence, I love his over the top personality, and I love his strange sense of fair play.
It’s unfortunate Vizzini could only be in the first half of the movie, but he certainly got enough screen time to leave an impact on me. His short stature, constant whining and meddling absolutely reminded me of the Ferengi from Star Trek. Even his voice reminded me of the Grand Nagus.
Oh wait, he IS GRAND NAGUS ZEK! I seriously didn’t know who this actor was before I saw Princess Bride, so I’m happy to get to see more of a good actor, and that I was actually able to figure out who he was despite being horrible at naming actors (and all the Ferengi makeup).
Unfortunately it’s Princess Buttercup who brings this movie down for me. It’s no fault of the actor, who does a fantastic job displaying a range of emotions. My problem is how absolutely weak this character is. I realize the purpose of a princess is to be saved by the prince, but I hate how absolutely useless she is. I’m not a raging feminist who demands that she wears armor and punches people in the face, I just want her to be able to do more than cry, or try to commit suicide. The most annoying moment came when Fireswap when the Rodents of Unusual Size (fantastic name) attacked Wesley. Buttercup seemed to at least know enough to at least grab a branch to defend herself, but she didn’t actually do it. As Wesley wrestled on the ground with the ROUS, Buttercup was in perfect position to at least try to whack the thing over the head. However, she just stood there, apparently paralyzed with fear. It’s simply frustrating to see Buttercup be nothing more than a fragile princess. Perhaps more of her story was lost in the translation from book to movie, but I feel she is a weak and forgettable character. When you consider how much time she gets on the screen, that’s sad.
I still love this movie though, it’s simply a fun movie that I’ll be sure to let my niece & nephew see (as soon as they’re old enough to handle the ROUS’es).