By: Emily Kellas
Rating: 9.5 out of 10
“Is this a kissing book?” No little Fred Savage, this story is much more than a romantic spit swapping romp! For those of you who don’t know that quote, or who Fred Savage is, this weeks Retro Review will explain it all. The quote, of course, belongs to one of the greatest romantic comedies of the 1980’s, and a true cult classic, Rob Reiner’s The Princess Bride. Though it sounds like something an eight year old girl calls her teddy bear, don’t let the title fool you. The Princess Bride is an incredibly sophisticated film with a full cast of fantastically fun characters, and droll moments you will be quoting for years.
The Princess Bride is the story of Princess Buttercup (Robin Wright Penn) who is captured by a crew of misfits only to stumble upon her true love Wesley (Cary Elwes), who was thought to be dead after being captured by the Dread Pirate Roberts. The characters, including a lovable giant, a Latin swordsman seeking revenge, and Billy Crystal as the sideways mystic Mad Max, eventually come together to help bring the two down trodden, and forcibly separated lovers into each others arms consequently disrupting the entire kingdom. The tale is read and narrated to us by a grandfather (Peter Falk) to his grandson (Fred Savage) in hopes of reminding him of the power books can and still wield.
The spark of this film rests heavily on the spectacular comedic performances of its cast members such as the comedic debut of Andre the Giant, Mandy Patinkin, Wallace Shawn, and many others. Every character is endearing and unique, unlike anything audiences had seen before. It is the films indelible brand of humor that brings together slapstick, smart and witty comedy that in conjunction with the incredibly talented actors leaves audiences rolling in their seats. Not to mention with veteran Director Rob Reiner whose credits include This is Spinal Tap and When Harry Met Sally guarantee the film to be riddled with wisecracks, and parody. Within this fairytale story lays a layer of pure sarcasm and mockery of every far away land read to us as children, or put into film. In essence it is the precursor to movies such as Disney’s Enchanted, where in its quest to make fun, it too became the newest version of those romantic tales.
The Princess Bride has stands the test of time by being a true comedic, romantic, and action packed classic. Each new generation finds something new and wonderful about the film that keeps it relevant and just as funny as it was in 1987. So do yourself a favor, and watch The Princess Bride so not only you will know who Fred Savage is, but so you can finally understand what people are talking about when they say “Hello my name is Inigo Montoya, you killed my father, prepare to die.”