The Princess Bride
Is this a kissing book?
The Princess Bride 101
» Spoiler Warning: details on this page could spoil any surprise(s) in the story if you have not seen this movie.
A kindly grandfather sits down with his grandson and reads him a bedtime story. The story is one that has been passed down from father to son for generations. As the grandfather reads the story, the action comes alive, a classic tale of love and adventure as the beautiful Buttercup is kidnapped and held against her will in order to marry the odious Prince Humperdinck. Westley (her childhood beau, now returned as the Dread Pirate Roberts) goes to great lengths in his attempt to save her. On the way he meets an accomplished swordsman and a huge, super strong giant, both of whom become his companions in his quest.
The Princess Bride: Recap and Review
What makes it so notable? Clever writing, marvelously quirky characters, and a very satisfying ending helped make this romantic adventure an instant classic.
What are its weak points? A handful of people have complained that the film does not do the book justice.
Verdict: Casual Fan or Big-Time Fangirl? Big-Time Fangirl
Comments: I fell in love with this movie the first time I saw it, and I'm not alone in that, as it repeatedly tops viewers' lists of favorites even today.
- Quotes -
The good, the bad, the sad, the funny: the things we wish we'd thought to say first.
Grandson: Has it got any sports in it?
Grandpa: Are you kidding? Fencing, fighting, torture, revenge, giants, monsters, chases, escapes, true love, miracles...
Grandson: Doesn't sound too bad. I'll try to stay awake.
Grandpa: Oh, well, thank you very much, very nice of you. Your vote of confidence is overwhelming.
"Is this a kissing book?" The grandson, to his grandfather who is reading The Princess Bride
Westley: Hear this now: I will always come for you.
Buttercup: But how can you be sure?
Westley: This is true love - you think this happens every day?
Vizzini: A word, my lady. We are but poor, lost circus performers. Is there a village nearby?
Buttercup: There is nothing nearby. Not for miles.
Vizzini: Then there will be no one to hear you scream.
Inigo: Fezzik, are there rocks ahead?
Fezzik: If there are, we all be dead.
Vizzini: No more rhymes now, I mean it!
Fezzik: Anybody want a peanut?
"Do you think he's using the same wind we're using?" Inigo, to Vizzini when a ship in the distance is gaining on them
Inigo: You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.
Inigo: I give you my word as a Spaniard.
Man in Black: No good. I've known too many Spaniards.
Inigo (suddenly very serious): I swear upon the grave of my father Domingo Montoya, you will make it to the top.
Man in Black: Throw me the rope.
Inigo: I do not mean to pry, but you don't by any chance happen to have six fingers on your right hand?
Man in Black: Do you always begin conversations this way?
"Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die." What Inigo will say when he finds the six-fingered man who murdered his father many years ago
Inigo: You seem a decent fellow. I hate to kill you.
Man in Black: You seem a decent fellow. I hate to die.
Vizzini: Finish him. Finish him, your way.
Fezzik: Oh good, my way. Thank you Vizzini... what's my way?
Vizzini: Pick up one of those rocks, get behind a boulder, in a few minutes the man in black will come running around the bend, the minute his head is in view, hit it with the rock.
Fezzik: My way's not very sportsman-like.
Man in Black: You mean, you put down your rock and I put down my sword and we try to kill each other like civilized people?
Vizzini: I can't compete with you physically, and you're no match for my brains.
Man in Black: You're that smart?
Vizzini: Let me put it this way. Have you ever heard of Plato, Aristotle, Socrates?
Man in Black: Yes.
Buttercup: You're the Dread Pirate Roberts, admit it.
Man in Black: With pride. What can I do for you?
Buttercup: You can die slowly, cut into a thousand pieces.
Man in Black: Tsk, tsk. That's hardly complementary, Highness.
Man in Black: Life is pain, Highness. Anyone who says differently is selling something.
Buttercup: We'll never survive.
Westley: Nonsense. You're only saying that because no one ever has.
Inigo: Do you hear that, Fezzik? That is the sound of ultimate suffering. My heart made that sound when the six-fingered man killed my father. The Man in Black makes it now.
Inigo: Are you the Miracle Max who worked for the king all those years?
Miracle Max: The King's stinking son fired me, and thank you so much for bringing up such a painful subject. While you're at it, why don't you give me a nice paper cut and pour lemon juice on it? We're closed!
"We are men of honor. Lies do not become us." Westley, to Count Rugen, who claimed he would return Westley to his ship
Buttercup: Westley and I are joined by the bonds of love, and you cannot track that, not with a thousand blood hounds, and you cannot break it, not with a thousand swords.
Prince Humperdink: I don't think I'm quite familiar with that phrase.
Westley: I'll explain. And I'll use small words so that you'll be sure to understand, you warthog-faced buffoon.
- Lessons Learned -
What can we learn from this film?
* You rush a miracle man, you get rotten miracles.
* Not much can get in the way of true love.
* There's not a lot of money in revenge.
* Beware of princes who smile too much.
* Overconfidence can be deadly.
* Inconceivable does not mean impossible.
* Getting fired can wreck a person's self-confidence.
* Remember that a chocolate coating can help things go down easier.
* After 20 years at something, a person *ought* to be amazing at it.
* Even if you're the best, there's always someone better.
* Assets don't always look like assets.
* People in masks cannot be trusted.
* However, masks are reported to be terribly comfortable.
* Don't distract people when they're climbing a sheer rock face.
* In swordfighting, employ Bonetti's Defense on rocky terrain.
* If you haven't got your health, then you haven't got anything.
* Criminals are used to having people not trust them.
* When there is no time for an explanation, a brief summary will have to do.
* True love is the greatest thing in the world. Except for a nice MLT - mutton, lettuce and tomato sandwich.
* When you do something right, don't let it go to your head.
* "Concerned" is not the same thing as "nervous."
* No one would surrender to the Dread Pirate Westley.
* In marriage vows, if you didn't say "I do," you didn't.
* Don't give up! It ain't over 'till it's over.
* Even when it appears to be over, it might not be over.
* Sometimes there are happy endings.
- Favorite Scenes -
Also known as "moments"
Westley is facing off with Vizzini in a battle of wits to save the princess. Westley has put poison in one of two goblets; Vizzini is to choose and they both will drink. Vizzini pompously declares the contest child's play, since he only has to consider the facts and deduce which glass contains the poison. Vizzini rambles on, tediously elaborating on how he can "clearly not choose" either glass. Finally, he is silent for a moment to allow the full extent of his genius to sink in. Westley declares, "Truly, you have a dizzying intellect," but his sarcasm is lost on Vizzini who booms, "Wait 'til I get going!" Distracted, he asks, "Where was I?" He had been discussing the poison's country of origin and Westley replies, a bit bored, "Australia."
[Vizzini is pleased with his choice in the battle of wits, and he begins to gloat.]
Vizzini: You fell victim to one of the classic blunders! The first is never get involved in a land war in Asia. The second, only slightly less well known, is this: never go up against a Sicilian when death is on the line! Ha ha ha ha ha ha --
[He stops abruptly and falls over, dead.]
[The lovers are considering the dangers of the Fire Swamp.]
Buttercup: What about the R.O.U.S.'s?
Westley: Rodents Of Unusual Size? I don't think they exist.
[Immediately, an R.O.U.S. attacks, knocking him down.]
Inigo and Fezzick are knocking on Miracle Max's door. Miracle Max says, "Beat it, or I'll call the Brute Squad." Fezzick says, "I'm on the Brute Squad." Looking at Fezzick (played by Andre the Giant), Miracle Max retorts, "You are the Brute Squad!"
Westley is starting to wake up after being mostly dead. The others, the giant and the swordfighter, are telling him that they need to plan an attack on the castle. They tell him their assets are his brains, the giant's strength, and the swordfighter's steel. Westley shakes his head a bit in dismay and says that it's impossible to face 60 men with only that. He says, "Now if we only had a wheelbarrow, that would be something." They do have access to a wheelbarrow, and he replies a bit peeved, "Well, why didn't you list that among our assets in the first place?"
- Afterthoughts -
* Trivia: Released in US September 25th, 1987
* Trivia: Total US Gross $30,857,000
* Trivia: "The film was shot at Lee International Studios, Shepperton, England, with additional locations in rural Derbyshire and Kent. Haddon Hall, once owned by the illegitimate son of William the Conqueror, represented Florin Castle. Medieval Penshurst Place, Hever Castle, Burnham Beeches and the forboding Cliffs of Moher on the southwest coast of Ireland, which doubled for the Cliffs of Insanity, were also among the locations." (from the movie's press kit)
* Trivia: Filming began August 1986, and was completed December 1986.
* Trivia: Estimated budget: $16 million.
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