The Princess Bride is one of those rare movies that is greatly loved by people of all ages. A box-office flop (the studio had no idea how to market the film), it found a huge cult following on video. The movie, like the William Goldman novel on which it is faithfully based, has something for everyone: pirates, giants, true love, magicians, and “the greatest swordfight of all time.” When I heard Cary Elwes’s interview on NPR, I kept my eyes open for his book, As You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of The Princess Bride.
If only As You Wish were half as endearing as the movie. It contains few inconceivable tales, and despite the assistance of a second author, the writing is uninspired. While the chapter on the film’s famous duel between Westley (Elwes) and Inigo Montoya (Mandy Patrinkin) is interesting, this little book, published to mark the movie’s 25th anniversary, will be a must-read only for serious fans.