MOTW: As You Wish: Five Memorable Quotes from "The Princess Bride"

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The Princess Bride is a 1987 American romantic comedy adventure film directed and co-produced by Rob Reiner. It is based on the 1973 novel of the same name by William Goldman, an American novelist, playwright and screenwriter. The story is presented in the film as a book being read by a grandfather (Peter Falk) to his sick grandson (Fred Savage), thus effectively preserving the novel's narrative style.
Photo Credit: Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation
November 20th, 2013

MOTW: As You Wish: Five Memorable Quotes from "The Princess Bride"

When "The Princess Bride" was released in September of 1987, no one could have known the pop-culture phenomenon the film would become. Based on the book by William Goldman, "The Princess Bride" is an iconic movie, a cult classic, and one of the most quotable films of all time. Rare indeed is the person who has never heard "My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die." Some may even argue that the quote, delivered by actor Mandy Patinkin, is one of the most recognizable quotes in movie history. Even twenty-five years after its box office release, "The Princess Bride" continues to fascinate audiences, and is the subject of many fan websites and quote-along screenings where audiences speak the dialogue along with the actors on screen. With such a rich store of quotable material, it is difficult to choose the five most loved quotes from "The Princess Bride." The following is an attempt to do the legendary film—and its quotes—justice.

"Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die."

Probably the most recognizable quote in the movie, this sentence was spoken by Inigo Montoya (Patinkin) six times throughout the film and has been repeated millions of times since by "Princess Bride" fans. Montoya spent half his life looking for, and preparing to kill, the man who murdered his father. When he finally finds the man who left him fatherless, he says this line several times before defeating the murderer in a sword fight.

"You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."

Also delivered by Inigo Montoya, this quote has increased in popularity since it became an Internet meme pointing out incorrect grammar and word usage all over the world. In the film, Montoya is responding to Vizzini's (Wallace Shawn) repeated use of the word "inconceivable." "Inconceivable!" itself is often repeated by fans of "The Princess Bride" and has come to be inexorably linked to the film.

"Mawage"

The first word uttered by The Impressive Clergyman (Peter Cook) in the marriage ceremony speech is famous all on its own. The Impressive Clergyman goes on to give a speech that, in the absence of the speech impediment, would still be funny for its clichés. But the clergyman's—ahem—uniqueway of pronouncing words makes the marriage ceremony one of the funniest scenes in the film.

"You fell victim to one of the classic blunders! The most famous of which is: never get involved in a land war in Asia, but only slightly less well known is this: never go against a Sicilian when death is on the line!"

These are Vizzini's last words after drinking from a poisoned goblet in a battle of wits with The Man in Black/ Dread Pirate Roberts/Wesley (Cary Elwes). While trying to rescue Princess Buttercup (Robin Wright), The Man in Black corners Vizzini, who is threatening to slit Buttercup's neck. Vizzini notes that he is no match for The Man in Black physically, so The Man in Black proposes a battle of wits involving two goblets and powdered poison. After a lengthy exchange about which goblet is poisoned and which to choose, Vizzini switches the goblets while The Man in Black is distracted and then informs him of his "blunder" with the famous quote. Vizzini then immediately drops dead.

"As you wish."

Every time Princess Buttercup asks Wesley to do something, his reply is, "As you wish." It is his way of showing his love, implying that he will do anything for the Princess. When The Man in Black/Dread Pirate Roberts steals Buttercup from Vizzini, she realizes that he is really Wesley when he says "as you wish" after she pushes him down the hill. "As you wish" is an endearing quote from "The Princess Bride," an encoded way of saying "I love you," and is a fitting ending to the film. When the grandson asks his grandfather to return the next day to read the story again, his reply is, "As you wish."