Thursday, March 3, 2011

As You Wish; or, Ell-Leigh reads The Princess Bride, sighs melodramatically every 5 minutes for rest of the week.

I tend to read books after I see the movies, eg; The Lovely Bones, Eat Pray Love, Interview with a Vampire. Most of the time one tends to out-do the other in my opinion, one I enjoy more, one’s plot is significantly more entertaining or likeable, one has an attractive cast and all the other has is my imagination (a device which has its ups and downs). Many times when I’ve seen a film and have a copy of the novel in my hot little hands I don’t know what to expect from it, especially when I’ve enjoyed the movie so much. This was the case when I decided to read The Princess Bride.

My sister had just finished reading it, and so we rented the film from our nearby Video Ezy. Like many people my age, I watched this film over and over as a child, and when I went to read the novel, I had a very different picture of what this novel was going to be like. This is one book that shouldn’t be judged by its movie.

Imagine the film – Pretty maiden turn princess, Carey Elwes being nothing short of the perfect man, crazy-ass cliffs, sword fights, piracy, an epic battle of the wits, Billy Crystal… Now imagine it’s deeper, and darker, and with more layers. It also has an amusing, entirely fictional account of the dramas the author went through getting his overweight son to read the “original” novel, apparently written by one “Morgenstein”, and then his attempt to “abridge” it. It is clever, tightly knit and adorable; an inconceivably good read.

Not that it is necessarily more “adult”; the themes are just much darker, the torture is crueler, the heartbreak is deeper. Humperdink’s character in particular is fleshed out a lot more in the book – he is truly terrifying and evil, on par with some of the most horrible villains fiction has ever created, with his gruesome “Zoo of Death” and morbid hunting obsession. Inigo and Fezzik are given detailed back-stories, which the reader can’t help but eat up like some delicious comforting stew. The story is precisely what you want from a fairytale, and reading it is nothing short of joy.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...