1. jannert

    jannert Retired Mod Supporter Contributor

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    I'm struggling with The Princess Bride

    Discussion in 'Discussion of Published Works' started by jannert, Aug 17, 2017.

    What do other people think of William Goldman's The Princess Bride? I have not seen the movie, but thought I'd read the book. And I'm really struggling. What am I missing? So many people have written that it's their favourite book of all time. For a while it was kind of interesting, but it's starting to bore me spitless. I truly don't care what happens to any of the characters. It's well-written, I suppose, but just ...not engaging me at all. The tone is very strange.
     
  2. Homer Potvin

    Homer Potvin Funky like your grandpa's drawers.... Staff Contributor

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    Funny you mention it. I didn't even know it was a book until recently and I had the same reaction. The movie is great though. Highly, highly, highly quotable. It alternates between the actual story and scenes with the grandfather (peter falk) reading it to his grandson (fred savage).
     
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  3. izzybot

    izzybot Transhuman Autophage Contributor

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    I remember liking it when I read it as a kid, but that was a good long while ago ... Now you've got me wanting to check it out again.

    Agreed that the movie is great, though. Definitely give it a watch.
     
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  4. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributor Contributor

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    I love the movie. I've never read the book, but I suspect that I might not like the story all that much in just words. I should try to find out, though.
     
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  5. The Dapper Hooligan

    The Dapper Hooligan (V) ( ;,,;) (v) Contributor

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    I really enjoyed the book. It's very tongue in cheek, but is still a rather fun adventure story at the same time. Be warned, though, if you don't like parentheses, it could become somewhat maddening.
     
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  6. Trish

    Trish Damned if I do and damned if I don't Contributor

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    I've never read the book, and actually didn't realize it was one until a few years ago, but I love the movie.
     
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  7. The Dapper Hooligan

    The Dapper Hooligan (V) ( ;,,;) (v) Contributor

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    I did the same. It when I was a kid it was like one of 5 or 6 movies VHS tapes my family had, so yeah, I can pretty much quote the entire thing front to back now. I went to my local bookstore one day and the girl that worked there just smiled at me as I walked in and held it up just to see me freak out and squee with delight. Kind of a glee squee. For me, though, I think it was probably that I liked the movie so much that I didn't' really notice any dead spots and I love satire and digressions. I used to read a lot of old picaresque books, too, so I think I also enjoyed it just because the Princess Bride does flip some adventure tropes on us. I dunno, but if you don't like it, you don't like it, mate. No shame in that. There're a lot of books out there I don't like, so no judging.
     
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  8. Trish

    Trish Damned if I do and damned if I don't Contributor

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    Same for me. My choices were quite limited and my sister's (older so she always won) two favorite movies we owned were The Princess Bride and Seven Brides For Seven Brothers. I can pretty much quote them both. Now I kind of want to read it. :rolleyes:
     
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  9. jannert

    jannert Retired Mod Supporter Contributor

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    Thanks for the input. I think that, rather than struggling on with the book, I'll get a DVD of the movie and watch that instead. (Is there only one movie, by the way? I was looking earlier and got the impression it had recently been remade.) So many people I know and respect really loved the movie. I had such high hopes for the book, and to find it so deadly dull (in my view) was an unexpected and unpleasant surprise. What should my attitude be, going into the movie? Expecting fun? Something like Time Bandits? (a very favourite movie of mine.)

    Goldman wrote the screenplay for All the President's Men, which is one of my all-time favourite movies, and one I saw many times at the cinema. He also wrote the screenplay for Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Marathon Man and others. I was less fond of Butch and Marathon, but they were still great movies. So I'm not quite ready to dismiss this author. I really want to love this book. I truly do feel I'm missing something. I'll give the movie a shot, and if that doesn't engage me, THEN I'll give up. But I'll probably always feel like I'm missing something. Damn.
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2017
  10. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributor Contributor

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    I think it's having a 20th anniversary rather than being remade. I hope. How could they remake it?!

    Turns out that the book is a free Kindle borrow for Amazon prime, so I did some paging through it. I enjoyed the bits that I read, but I enjoyed them because I could see and hear the movie characters.

    Yes, I definitely think it's fun.
     
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  11. jannert

    jannert Retired Mod Supporter Contributor

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    Everybody's input has convinced me to give the movie a go. I got a similar response when I posed the question on my Facebook page, except for two people who also didn't like the movie. But the response is overwhelmingly thumbs-up for the movie. I'll go order it from Amazon right now.

    ......Done. Just ordered it. Thanks for all the input.
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2017
  12. 123456789

    123456789 Contributor Contributor

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    I just read the forward by Goldman. That's pretty funny.
     
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  13. jannert

    jannert Retired Mod Supporter Contributor

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    For some reason I couldn't get through it, and just stopped reading it and moved on to the actual story. Maybe that's my problem? The trouble with Kindle is that it's difficult to see page layouts and to know what's vital to the story and what isn't. I assumed a Forward wasn't necessary reading before starting the story, but was something written after the fact, about how the story came to be, etc.
     
  14. 123456789

    123456789 Contributor Contributor

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    Well once he got to the gorgeous girl in the pool and then his wife calls, I sort of had to keep going...
     
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  15. jannert

    jannert Retired Mod Supporter Contributor

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    What I'm going to do is stop reading the story where I am, because I'm building up quite a dislike to it. I've ordered the movie. If I like the movie, I'll go back and start reading again, and not skip any of it—including the Forward.

    Have you read beyond the Forward?
     
  16. The Dapper Hooligan

    The Dapper Hooligan (V) ( ;,,;) (v) Contributor

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    You have to read all of The Princess Bride. Forwards and everything. It's all part of the story, or at least it was in my copy.
     
  17. 123456789

    123456789 Contributor Contributor

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    Actually, his style reminds me a little bit of Stephen King's--sort of like that neighbor/coworker who is very normal and down to earth, except they're really good at gossiping and before you know it you've been listening to them for over three hours.
     
  18. 123456789

    123456789 Contributor Contributor

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    I've skimmed for voice so far. You've certainly piqued my interest.

    I think for me, the problem is less his style, and a lot more the content.

    That's right, I have seen the Princess Bride, or at least enough different scenes over the course of my childhood to get the picture. It's a pretty silly story. Cute, and that's about it.
     
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  19. jannert

    jannert Retired Mod Supporter Contributor

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    I think you've hit the nail on the head for me. Thus far, I'm not smitten with the content. I find Wesley and Buttercup totally irritating, their 'love' story completely unbelievable, and frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn. I liked the Spaniard and the Turk at first, but even they got annoying, and once the identity of The Man In Black was revealed, I totally lost interest. I kept going for a little while longer, but then quit, at least for now. My problem is wanting to read more about any of them. I don't see the point.
     
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