Princess Bride 25th Anniversary Blu-Ray Review (Kirk Haviland)

Princess Bride 25th Anniversary Blu-Ray 

Starring Cary Elwes, Robin Wright, Mandy Patinkin, Christopher Guest, Wallace Shawn, Andre the Giant, Fred Savage, Peter Falk, Carol Kane and Billy Crystal

Written by William Goldman

Directed by Rob Reiner

Celebrating its 25th anniversary this year is The Princess Bride, a small fairy tale that over time has become a timeless classic spanning generations. Featuring new packaging as well as a brand new 30 minute long special feature on top of all of the features from the 20th anniversary edition, the 25th anniversary edition turns out to be a packed Blu-ray.  The question remains: is this edition worth the upgrade if you already own a copy of this classic yarn?

In case you don’t know the story, when a young boy falls ill his grandfather pops round to visit him. In an attempt to cheer up his grandson (Savage), Grandpa (Falk) has brought a book named The Princess Bride. It’s the tale of the beautiful Buttercup (Wright) and farmhand Westley (Elwes). When Westley takes off to make his fortune to provide for Buttercup, he is cut down at sea by the Dread Pirate Roberts and his crew. Heartbroken, Buttercup, after swearing to never to love again, is betrothed to marry Prince Humperdinck, heir to the throne of Florin. As wedding preparations loom Buttercup is kidnapped by the unlikely trio of Fezzik (Andre the Giant), Inigo Montoya (Patinkin) and Vazzini (Shawn). But the mysterious man in black, who may be a familiar face, chasing them has his own plans for Buttercup and Humperdinck’s own intentions may not be pure. Through Fire Swamps, ROUS (Rodents of Unusual Size), near death and a rumpled miracle maker will true love win the day out, and will Inigo ever find the elusive 6 fingered (Guest) man who took his father’s life while he was a child?

The Princess Bride remains a film I revisit from time to time. It brings back those feelings of childhood and the stories and films I grew up watching. It’s an example of classic storytelling, broad adventure, silly characters and has a well told believable love story at its heart. Framed with the relatable story of a sick boy and his grandfather bonding over a story, the film also works as a love letter to the books we grew up on. The cast is practically flawless here and as much as Elwes and Wright’s characters are the center of the story, it’s Pantinkin’s Inigo that maybe it’s heart. Andre the Giant’s Fezzik is the scene stealer here, the adorable charm of Andre oozes through the screen every time he’s on it. Sarandon and Guest as the villains of the piece remind us of why they are some of the greatest character actors of the last 25 years. Sarandon shines especially when you consider how much he has been criminally underused since this film.  The story is classic and the dialogue reminiscent of the classic tales of old. Rob Reiner brings this tale to life where many other directors, including the genius Francois Truffaut, attempted but were unable to do before – Reiner makes it work.

As mentioned earlier, the Blu-Ray is packed with special features. The new two part featurette, True Love: The Princess Bride Phenomenon features a 15 minute sit down round table discussion between Reiner, Elwes and Wright. And a 15 minute featurette featuring most of the rest of the cast discusses the impact the film has had over the years and examples of how the film has impacted pop culture and the mainstream. Two audio commentaries with Rob Reiner and William Goldman are accompanied by seven other featurettes and Cary Elwes’ video diary from the set. The sit down with Elwes, Reiner and Wright is actually quite charming and hearing Pantikin talk about how he loves to whisper his classic “My Name is Inigo Montoya, you killed my father, prepare to die” in kids ears and see the reaction is priceless.

The question as to whether or not to buy this new version of the Blu-ray is debatable. If you own the older Blu-ray, the only addition is the new featurette, and as charming as it is that alone may not be worth the double dip. But if you only own an old copy of the DVD, or if you do not own the film at all, The Princess Bride 25th Anniversary Edition is a must buy.

Till Next Time,

Movie Junkie TO

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Published by moviejunkieto

Having over 20 years in Entertainment Retail has given me a strong opinion on film. And I'm all to willing to share.....

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