I’m sure you have a movie where, whenever it’s on, you HAVE to watch it. I have several of these movies but one of the biggest movies for me is The Princess Bride. I have to watch it from whatever point whenever I catch it on TV. This problem is so bad that in high school I was watching it on TV while working in my acting journal (shut up) and I ended up writing quotes from the movie all over my assignment (whoops).
There was even a time my mom and I caught it on TV, literally at the VERY end of the movie and I said, “Oh, but I just have to finish watching this.” I mean, when I say end I mean, Buttercup was coming out of the window onto the white horse. Very end.
1. I Am Obsessed With All Actors Involved
Maybe it’s because this movie came out in 1987 and I’ve been watching it by my choosing for most of my life. Maybe it’s just because everyone is awesome in it. But I am OBSESSED with every actor in this movie. Here’s a run down of why.
Billy Crystal – COME ON, When Harry Met Sally… AND this? Donezo.
Cary Elwes – Liar, Liar, The Crush and Twister?! Oh, I’m sorry, you’re fat and have a weird accent on SVU? Who cares? I love you!
Robin Wright – I can’t even think of anything else I’ve ever seen you in that I’ve cared about but man, you married Sean Penn! And you’re Princess Buttercup! You’re in for life.
Wallace Shawn – Dude, are you trying to kill me? Princess Bride, Clueless and then Gossip Girl?! The. Best.
Chris Sarandon – One of my favorite bits of trivia to share is “you know, Susan Sarandon was married to Chris Sarandon so that’s why they have the same last name.” I don’t care if you already know that. I love it. Also, he’s in the original Fright Night. Duh.
Christopher Guest – I have no words. You’re a chameleon.
Carol Kane – Annie Hall, Taxi and “I’m not a witch – I’m you’re wife!”? I will always be obsessed with you.
Fred Savage – I think the only reason I liked Boy Meets World was because I was like, “omg that’s Fred Savage’s brother and he is adorable!” (No, for real).
I could continue but there’s no point. I am in love with you if you appeared in this movie (including you, Andre the Giant) and there’s no turning back. You can do no wrong in my book and I’ll defend you to the end.
2. I Just Say Quotes From It All The Time
You know how in You’ve Got Mail Tom Hanks says you can use a quote from The Godfather to answer any question? It’s kind of like that.
I just only want to say, “Hello, my name is Inigo Montoya, you killed my father, prepare to die.” Or, “Get back, witch!” “I’m not a witch, I’m your wife. But after what you just said, I’m not even sure I want to be that any more. “
It’s also fun to yell to people when they’re leaving, “Have fun storming the castle!” Or if someone is whining about something “Life is pain, Highness, anyone who says differently is selling something.”
I also have a particular fondness for “There’s a shortage of perfect breasts in this world. It would be a pity to damage yours” and “Yes, I AM a silly girl!” Because, you know, I am a silly girl, and I totally feel Buttercup in the moment.
3. I’ve Kept a Lot of Rodents As Pets
This might be a weird one. But I distinctly remember loving the scene in the fire swamp with the R.O.U.S.’s (rodents of unusual size? I don’t think they exist).
Maybe I enjoyed that you could tell there were people inside those suits. Maybe I just thought they looked funny. Maybe this is why I always take pictures of capybaras at the zoo!
All I know is I’ve owned, gerbils, mice, rats and a prairie dog (all at separate times) and I think it can all be traced back to those darn R.O.U.S.’s.
4. I Coveted Long Blonde Hair
Here’s the deal. I’m NOT blonde.
Obviously I was obsessed with Beauty & the Beast because Belle is a brunette but any movie character I loved who wasn’t a brunette, I was basically jealous of. Including Buttercup.
Best. Hair. Ever.
Buttercup has THE BEST hair ever. It’s insanely long and blonde and wavy and just, awesome. It was everything I ever wanted. I briefly had my hair dyed blonde in my early 20’s and while I can’t totally blame that on Buttercup, I can blame my desire for insanely long hair on her (with a dash of Princess Leia – a fellow brunette). Thanks goodness Buttercup has blue eyes so I could at least convince myself I was really her because of that.
5. “The Pain”
Prince Humperdinck: First things first, to the death.
Westley: No. To the pain.
Prince Humperdinck: I don’t think I’m quite familiar with that phrase.
Westley: I’ll explain and I’ll use small words so that you’ll be sure to understand, you warthog faced buffoon.
Prince Humperdinck: That may be the first time in my life a man has dared insult me.
Westley: It won’t be the last. To the pain means the first thing you will lose will be your feet below the ankles. Then your hands at the wrists. Next your nose.
Prince Humperdinck: And then my tongue I suppose, I killed you too quickly the last time. A mistake I don’t mean to duplicate tonight.
Westley: I wasn’t finished. The next thing you will lose will be your left eye followed by your right.
Prince Humperdinck: And then my ears, I understand let’s get on with it.
Westley: WRONG. Your ears you keep and I’ll tell you why. So that every shriek of every child at seeing your hideousness will be yours to cherish. Every babe that weeps at your approach, every woman who cries out, “Dear God! What is that thing,” will echo in your perfect ears. That is what to the pain means. It means I leave you in anguish, wallowing in freakish misery forever.
Prince Humperdinck: I think you’re bluffing.
Westley: It’s possible, Pig, I might be bluffing. It’s conceivable, you miserable, vomitous mass, that I’m only lying here because I lack the strength to stand. But, then again… perhaps I have the strength after all.
[slowly rises and points sword directly at the prince]
Westley: DROP. YOUR. SWORD!
I just – this scene is amazing. It’s everything that’s great about Westley and everything that is wrong with Prince Humperdinck. Westley, despite being the little Farm Boy is so badass and just totally owns Humperdinck who is just too stupid to realize what’s actually happening.
This isn’t to say I didn’t also love the gushy romance scenes in The Princess Bride as a child (as well as an adult) but that wasn’t WHY I loved the movie. I wanted Westley to be in love with me, so I wasn’t really into watching him be in love with Buttercup. I did love any scene where he’s the Man In Black and then, obviously, any scene where he’s putting Humperdinck (or Vizzini) in his place.
It’s a fantastic scene and I can play it in my head at will. It perfectly sums up why I love this movie and why this story is forever ingrained in my brain, never to be removed.
Ultimately, I blame Rob Reiner for all of this (and maybe my life in general) since I’m obsessed with When Harry Met Sally… as well.
Just remember . . . As you wish.
(Images from The Princess Bride lovingly screengrabbed from my DVD, capybara pic from Wikipedia & transcription of scene from imdb.com)