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The Princess Bride - Special Edition [DVD]
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Comical fantasy tale of beautiful princesses, foul villains and dashing heroes from director Rob Reiner. The Princess Buttercup (Robin Wright Penn) is saddened by the disappearance of her true-love Westley (Cary Elwes), and finds that she now has no choice but to become engaged to the evil Prince Humperdinck (Chris Sarandon). But Westley soon arrives back on the scene and, along with his mismatched band of adventurers, sets off on a daring mission to rescue his beloved. The film also stars Mandy Patinkin as a Spanish cavalier and Billy Crystal as a crazy magician.
Director Rob Reiner's The Princess Bride is a gently amusing, affectionate pastiche of a medieval fairytale adventure, offering a similar blend of warm, literate humour as his Stand By Me (1985) and When Harry Met Sally (1989). Adapted from his own novel, William Goldman's script plays with the conventions of such 1980s fantasies as Ladyhawke and Legend (both 1985), and with the budget never allowing for spectacle, sensibly concentrates on creating a gallery of memorable characters. Robin Wright makes a delightful Princess Buttercup, Cary Elwes is splendid as Westley and "Dread Pirate Roberts", while Mandy Patinkin makes fine Spanish avenger. With winning support from Mel Smith, Peter Cook, Billy Crystal and Carol Kane there is sometimes a Terry Gilliam/Monty Python feel to the proceedings, and the whole film is beautifully shot, with a memorably romantic main theme by Mark Knopfler. Occasionally interrupted by Peter Falk as a grandfather reading the story to his grandson, The Princess Bride is an elegant post-modern family fable about storytelling itself; a theme found in other 1980s films The Neverending Story (1984) and The Adventures of Baron Munchausen (1988). A modest, small-scale work that manages to be both cynically modern and genuinely romantic all at once. As charming as you wish.
On the DVD: The 1.77:1 anamorphic transfer is strong, if not quite as detailed as it might be. Colours lack just a little solidity and some scenes evidence a fair amount of grain. Released theatrically in Dolby stereo, the Dolby Digital 5.1 remix spreads the sound effectively across the front speakers but makes very little use of the rear channels indeed. Extras are limited to filmographies of five of the leading actors, and a 4:3 presentation of the theatrical trailer, which gives far too many of the film's surprises away.--Gary S Dalkin --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
A bored little boy (Fred Savage) is sick in bed, is told a story by his quirky grandfather (Peter Falk). In it, young lovers Buttercup (Robin Wright) and Westley (Carey Elwes) are separated when Westley is apparently killed. A few years later, the heartbroken Buttercup is unwillingly affianced to the slimy Prince Humperdinck. As if that weren't enough, she's kidnapped by a trio of mercenaries.
But things go wrong for the mercenaries -- a mysterious masked man is following them, and he defeats each of the mercenaries with his swordplay, strength and wits. He also knows quite a bit about Westley's fate -- and Buttercup soon finds that he IS Westley after all. But Buttercup is only a cog in Humperdinck's evil plot, and now it's up to Westley, gentle giant Fezzik (Andre) and vengeance-seeking Spaniard Inigo Montoya (Mandy Patinkin) to save her.
If "Princess Bride" had been done in a halfway serious manner, it wouldn't have been even remotely interesting. It would have been just another kids' film. But with William Goldman's tongue-in-cheek script and entertaining characters (Miracle Max, anyone?), it becomes something a lot sweeter and funnier.
Rob Reiner has a deft, wry touch that matches Goldman's story, and he does a superb job of keeping the grim moments lighter than they would have been otherwise ("We'll never make it through!" "Nonsense, you're only saying that because no one ever has").Read more ›
Part of the success is a superb cast. Carey Elwes is underrated - he is a great comedic actor and also a very versatile character actor. He is sharp and on the ball in this movie - his delivery spot on.
BUT - even so, Mandy Patinkin steals the shows with his wonderful performance.
This movie has such a huge personality and you can tell everyone had great fun making it. They don't make them like this any more, sadly.
Do yourself a favour - buy a copy of this absolute honey of a movie. It has everything to offer and won't fail to charm and cheer.
The sword fight is amazing, the lines are funny and delivered perfectly, as well as the acting...Go on try this film, and if you are luckily enough, you will become part of it's cult following..
Like many others, I watched the film knowing very little about it other than it is a fairytale but by the end realised I had just watched genius at work. Peter Falk and his knowing narration toys with us (and his sickly grandson) so effectively that all thoughts of reality are happily cast away after the first 5 minutes and rightly so.
I don't want to list the quotable lines nor list the goodies and baddies; discover them and everything else that is great about this film for yourself.
PS Ever wondered what became of sections of Goldman's script and his band of characters? See Shrek II...
Then when I was twenty one and a too cool for school student I watched it again. My God. Its a gem. Peter Cook! Cary Elwes! Rob Reiner! Mark Knopfler! Mel Smith! Andre the Giant! Christopher Guest! Billy Crystal! Peter Falk! This list of participants should make you rush out and buy this film. Go run. Then we can sit and talk about how cool and reconstructivist it is (or not whatever). Go get it and watch it with your eighty year old Mary Whitehouse esque granny, your Manhunt 2 obsessed nephew and especially your cynical too cool for school student nephew. This film combines so many themes, genres and nods and is still emotionally effective and accessible to the widest range of viewers this side of the Simpsons . Amazing.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
What is left to say? Classic timeless film brought up to high definition and all the extras produced.
So only thing left to say could be... Read more
When I lost all my recordings of movies due to a change in my Sky box, I invested in several classic movies which I enjoy and this is one of them!Published 1 month ago by Canny shopper
Classic, wonderful, gorgeous and inspirational. What is not to love about this movie.Published 1 month ago by Redwing
Classic movie. Very funny.
Disc was in as-new condition so no complaints at all.