Thursday, March 17, 2011
The Princess Bride by William Goldman
So, I happened to catch about the last 30 minutes of The Princess Bride on TV the other night. This movie ranks right up there as one of my all-time favorites. I happened to have finished up the book I'd been reading that afternoon, so I decided to take a trip up the stairs to my personal library and re-read Goldman's version. This book is an abridgement of the original by S. Morgenstern, and I have the author's word that it contains far less endless political and class satire than the original.
However, it is filled with plenty of satire, just of the sort that modern audiences will probably appreciate more. All of the places where Goldman has removed large sections of the original are "footnoted" with his description of what actually filled the gap before, and most of them would only appeal to the odd European scholar or historian.
The witty dialog that I loved in the movie is there in its entirety, plus a bit more thrown in for good measure. There's also a great deal of additional material about the personal histories of Fezzik and Inigo. One of the bits that puzzled me in the movie, how Fezzik comes up with a Holocaust Cloak, is also explained in one of Goldman's sidebars. The Zoo of Death is described in greater detail, and there's a stunning amount of information on exactly how beautiful Buttercup is.
Loved the movie, love the book. Pick up a copy and enjoy.