The Princess Bride: 25th Anniversary Edition (Blu-ray) (1987)
PG Dir: Rob Reiner | MGM | 1h 38min

Review By: Matt Brighton | October 4th, 2012

Plot: What’s it about?

As he lays in bed home sick from school, a young boy (Fred Savage) is visited by his grandfather (Peter Falk), who hopes to cheer up his grandson. He plans to read him a story, one called The Princess Bride, but the boy is reluctant, only to agree when he is told is has ample action within. The story follows a farm hand named Wesley (Cary Elwes), who has romantic feelings for a beautiful woman named Buttercup (Robin Wright Penn), but he lacks the money to wed her. So he takes off to make his fortune, but when he doesn’t return, Buttercup is promised to the repugnant Prince Humperdinck (Chris Sarandon). When Buttercup is then kidnapped as part of a plot to create tension between two powerful countries, a mysterious masked man embarks to rescue her. Will Buttercup be saved and even if so, will her heart ever heal from the loss of Wesley?

An instant classic, The Princess Bride is a wonderful movie. This is a film that the entire family can watch and fall in love with, a smart and wildly fun production. The younger viewers will be pulled into the fairy tale world, while adults will appreciate the writing, which is superb. The Princess Bride is simply loaded with quotable lines, delivered by characters that are memorable long after the credits roll. I haven’t seen a lot of movies that can entertain viewers of all ages in such a brilliant manner, but this movie succeeds on all fronts. There is action, adventure, romance, comedy, drama, and pure magic, all tied together with skilled efforts on both sides of the camera. The Princess Bride is a fantastic movie that will stand the test of time, so seeing it in such a lush presentation is a true treat. So whether you’re a new viewer or this is your five thousandth trip into this magical world, The Princess Bride on Blu-ray is highly recommended.

Video: How does it look?

The Princess Bride is one of those movies that will always be available on any new format and this is now the second time we’ve seen it on Blu-ray.  To be honest, this looks like the exact same transfer as the previous Blu-ray had.  The detail is impressive, though it seems to actually showcase a few more errors due to the increased clarity.  The movie was shot on a very low budget and, given the time frame (1987) the level of effects weren’t as great.  Hence, we can see more errors than in versions past.  That said the 1.85:1 AVC HD image has some eye popping colors, contrast is on the mark and flesh tones look warm and natural.  Fans of this film will be more than pleased.

Audio: How does it sound?

The DTS HD Master Audio track is, again, the same thing that was included on the previous Blu-ray.  Having said that the vocals are crisp and clean.  The surrounds don’t get too heavily involved, but they are there for some added emphasis.  The front stage handles most of the action and does it well.  There are a few times when the mix sounded a bit brittle, but they’re few and far between.  As we might expect, this is the best the movie has ever sounded.

Supplements: What are the extras?

Aside from some new cover art and a new retrospective featurette (presented in HD), the rest of the supplements are ported over from the previous Blu-ray.  In other words, there’s not a whole lot of reason to upgrade unless you want to see the cast and crew “reflect” on the film – everything else is the exact same.  And we lose the DVD copy with this version, so if that’s important to you then you might want to grab the older Blu-ray.  Covering the previously-released supplements we find a pair of audio commentaries are here, one with director Rob Reiner and the other with screenwriter William Goldman. While neither is a blockbuster session, Goldman’s track is more energetic and easier to listen to. Reiner provides some decent comments, but leaves many silent spaces and tends to narrate. As You Wish is a solid half hour featurette that has some worthwhile tidbits, while a handful of other featurettes run shorter, but are more focused. This release also contains Cary Elwes’ video diaries and a trailer.

Disc Features
  • (1.85:1) Aspect Ratio
  • Video Codec: AVC
  • Audio: DTS HD Master
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • Audio Commentary
  • Deleted Scene(s)
  • Featurette
  • Documentary
  • Digital Copy
  • 1 Disc Set
The Princess Bride: 25th Anniversary Edition (Blu-ray)