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33 Things We Learned from the ‘Princess Bride’ Commentary Track

Once upon a time, Rob Reiner and William Goldman recorded commentaries for their fairy tale collaboration, ‘The Princess Bride,’ so of course we gave them a listen.
The Princess Bride
By  · Published on March 8th, 2012

Welcome to Commentary Commentary, where we sit and listen to filmmakers talk about their work, then share the most interesting parts. In this edition, Nathan Adams tells himself a bedtime story filled with giants, magic, death, and a sloppy kiss. That’s right, he’s listening to Rob Reiner’s commentary on The Princess Bride.

When Jeremy said he needed someone to fill in on Commentary Commentary so that he could focus his energies primarily on South by Southwesting, I simply replied, “As you wish.” But then I was left with a conundrum. What movie should I watch the commentary track for? After rifling through my DVD collection I ended up with a handful of possibilities, and I wound up choosing The Princess Bride for one reason: when else would I ever listen to the commentary track on this movie, if not now?

The Princess Bride is so much fun, such a whimsical experience, that if you’re going to put the DVD on, you want to watch the movie. You don’t want to hear some old guy rambling over all of the classic lines. Consequently, this thing has been sitting on my shelf essentially since DVDs began, and I still haven’t listened to either the Rob Reiner or the William Goldman commentaries.

So, here we go, I’ll take the hit and give them a listen, pick out all the interesting stuff, and you can go about your usual business of properly soaking in all the action, adventure, and romance the next time you need to get your Princess Bride fix.

The Princess Bride (1987)

Commentator: Rob Reiner (Director)

Commentator: William Goldman (Author)

Best in Commentary

“There’s the miracle pill. It looks like a Godiva chocolate.” – Rob Reiner

“You gotta admit, these are two of the better looking people on the planet.” – Rob Reiner

“If Schwarzenegger tells me somebody’s strong, I believe it.” – William Goldman

“Nobody went to go see Little Nicky. Why didn’t they? I don’t know why!” – William Goldman

Final Thoughts

I’ve learned a lot from finally listening to these commentaries. Primarily I’ve learned that despite the fact that he’s a famous movie director, Rob Reiner dozes off in the middle of watching a movie just like anybody else’s dad. And even though William Goldman has enough spark and imagination to write something as happiness-inducing as The Princess Bride, he can be pretty boring when he’s just sitting alone in a room rambling. There are some long stretches between comments on both these tracks. Couldn’t they have got these guys together in the same room to get some chatter going or something?

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Writes about movies at Temple of Reviews and Film School Rejects. Complains a lot.