Thursday, July 7, 6 p.m.
Rock Island Public Library Southwest Branch, 9010 Ridegwood Road, Rock Island IL
One of the most beloved and frequently quoted works in the history of action, comedy, romance, adventure, and fantasy films will enjoy at special July 7 screening at the Rock Island Public Library's Southwest Branch in the all-ages delight The Princess Bride, a celebration of this timeless fairytale treat and its stunning 35-year legacy.
Directed by Rob Reiner and adapted by William Goldman from his 1973 novel of the same title, The Princess Bride tells the story of farmhand Westley – accompanied by companions befriended along the way – and how the young man must rescue his true love Buttercup after she becomes betrothed to the odious Prince Humperdinck. The film essentially preserves the novel's narrative style by presenting the story as a book being read by a grandfather (Peter Falk) to his sick grandson (Fred Savage), and the cast includes Cary Elwes as Westley, Robin Wright as Buttercup, and a dynamic supporting ensemble featuring Mandy Patinkin, Chris Sarandon, Wallace Shawn, André the Giant, Christopher Guest, Billy Crystal, Carol Kane, Mel Smith, and Peter Cook.
First released in the United States on October 9, 1987, The Princess Bride was well-received by critics, and the movie currently holds a 97-percent approval rating on the review aggregate Rotten Tomatoes, with the site's critical consensus stating: "A delightfully postmodern fairy tale, The Princess Bride is a deft, intelligent mix of swashbuckling, romance, and comedy that takes an age-old damsel-in-distress story and makes it fresh." Audiences surveyed by CinemaScore have also given Reiner's adventure fantasy a rare grade of "A+." But despite the praise and an eventual Oscar nomination, The Princess Bride was only a modest box office success upon its original release, grossing just over $30 million on a $16 million budget.
Over time, however, this genre-embracing entertaining has become a beloved work of 1980s cinema. The film was ranked number 50 on Bravo's list of the "100 Funniest Movies," as well as number 88 on The American Film Institute's AFI's 100 Years...100 Passions list of the 100 greatest movie love stories. In 2016, The Princess Bride was inducted into the National Film Registry, being deemed "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant," and four years later, the Chicago tavern As You Wish (named after one of the movie's most famous lines) opened with a menu featuring 16 movie-inspired cocktails.
The Princess Bride will be screened at the Rock Island Public Library's Southwest Branch on July 7, admission is free for the 7 p.m. event, and complimentary popcorn will be served. For more information, call (309)732-7323 and visit RockIslandLibrary.org.