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With: Cary Elwes, Robin Wright Penn, Mandy Patinkin, Chris Sarandon, Christopher Guest, Wallace Shawn, Andre the Giant, Fred Savage, Peter Falk, Peter Cook, Mel Smith, Carol Kane, Billy Crystal, Anne Dyson, Margery Mason, Malcolm Storry, Willoughby Gray, Betsy Brantley, Paul Badger
Written by: William Goldman, based on his own book
Directed by: Rob Reiner
MPAA Rating: PG
Running Time: 98
Date: 17/09/1987
IMDB

The Princess Bride (1987)

4 Stars (out of 4)

As You Wish

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

The Princess Bride made only a few top ten lists in 1987, was only nominated for one Oscar (Best Song), and did not particularly make much money. But it's become one of the hottest cult videos of the 1980s, and a family classic besides, enjoyed by new generations of youngsters as well as their parents. I've seen it some dozen times now, and I wouldn't change even the smallest detail. Everything in it is nearly perfect, and deliciously alive.

Cary Elwes stars as Westley, a "pure" farm boy who falls madly in love with Princess Buttercup (Robin Wright) before being whisked away by pirates. He returns as the Dread Pirate Roberts and must rescue the princess from being married to evil Chris Sarandon. His only help is a Spanish swordsman (Mandy Patinkin) and a mighty giant (Andre the Giant). A kindly grandfather (Peter Falk) reads this entire story to his sick-in-bed grandson (Fred Savage) in a wraparound sequence.

Billy Crystal provides some of the best laughs as Miracle Max, a healer, with Carol Kane as his nagging wife. The film is hysterical, but it succeeds as a devilish action film, a breathless romance, and an old-fashioned swashbuckler. The DVD contains great commentary tracks by both Reiner and William Goldman, who wrote both the novel and the screenplay, as well as video footage shot on the set by Cary Elwes, plus a new featurette. It's one of the few DVD titles in my collection I know I'll watch again and again.

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