Rob Reiner

20th Century Fox

Cary Elwes
Robin Wright
Mandy Pitinkin
Chris Sarandon
Christopher Guest
Andre the Giant
Billy Crystal
Peter Falk
Fred Savage
Mel Smith

THE PRINCESS BRIDE: USA 1987, Digital, Color, English, PG, 98 min


From celebrated director Rob Reiner and Oscar-winning screenwriter William Goldman comes an enchanting fantasy filled with adventure, romance and plenty of good-hearted fun! Featuring a spectacular cast that includes Robin Wright, Cary Elwes, Mandy Patinkin and Billy Crystal, this wonderful fairy tale about a Princess named Buttercup and her beloved is a real dream of a movie.

When Gramps brings in one of those boooring storybooks to his sick grandson, the kid groans. Ensconced in a room of nonverbal gimmickry -- computer games, TV and so on -- the last thing he needs is some kissy Once-Upon-a-Timer.

Except this story gets the kid (Fred Savage) interested -- thanks to the movies, ironically enough, and screenwriter William Goldman, who adapted this witty script from his book. Add director Rob Reiner's ability to coax great performances from his actors (as before in "This is Spinal Tap" and "Stand By Me"), and you have a percolating comedy. The laughs may not tear your belly up, but they're constant and they dovetail with the story. Aiming modestly, THE PRINCESS BRIDE achieves much more than most film comedies.

Goldman's tale is of young, blond (natch) lovers Westley (Cary Elwes) and Buttercup (Robin Wright), who must go through a fantasy fandango (a fiery swamp full of oversized rodents, The Pit of Despair and so on) to get back together. That is, if they do get back together.

THE PRINCESS BRIDE stands as the only self-acknowledging movie in existence that not only doesn’t collapse under its own glib weight, but in fact ends up being excellent; the deftness with which it balances earnestness and knowing winks really is some sort of miracle. Still, the brilliance of the movie is not that it discretely ‘works on two levels’ of childhood wonderment vs. adult post-satire, but that it works so well on a continuum spanning the two: I can remember when I sat wide-eyed at its adventure at a kid, but even then I got the impression it was pulling my leg, and here years later I guffaw at Billy Crystal, but... honestly... it’s still pretty fun to treat the movie seriously.