A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
The movie is intended to entertain rather than educate.
Despite some betrayal along the way, overall the movie's message is about the triumph of true love and the importance of loyalty, friendship, inventiveness, persistence, and family. Major themes also include perseverance, courage, integrity, and teamwork.
Positive Role Models
Characters prize true love and generally hold fast to their ideals where it's concerned. Some characters compromise their beliefs in the pursuit of their goals, but they don't win out in the end. Inigo is driven almost solely by a powerful quest for vengeance, but he has strong reasons. The grandfather and grandson have a touching relationship. Buttercup isn't a very empowered female character for much of the movie.
Violence & Scariness
Action-style violence includes a torture machine, sword fights (one to the death), a death by poisoning, quicksand, fire pits, shrieking eels, and menacing ROUSes (rodents of unusual size). A character makes a reference to killing herself.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
A few kisses, most notably a very sweet storybook kiss. Reference to Buttercup's "perfect breasts."
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One use of "son of a bitch." Also "my God" and "Jesus" (as an exclamation).
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Inigo has a drinking problem (he's shown inebriated), and Fezzik nurses him back to health. Other characters sometimes drink from goblets of wine.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Princess Bride is a quirky, funny fairy tale with quite a bit of action-style violence, including a torture machine, sword fights (one to the death), a death by poisoning, quicksand, fire pits, ROUSes (rodents of unusual size), and giant shrieking eels that attack main characters. But the movie's skewed humor and its storybook feel lessen some of the impact of the violent scenes. There's also drinking -- in one scene a drunken character is revived in a barrel of water -- and some kissing, as well as a bit of language ("son of a bitch," "Jesus!" as an exclamation) and a reference to a character's "perfect breasts." To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
This witty modern fairy tale by William Goldman (screenwriter of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid and All the President's Men) is resoundingly satisfying. Goldman's book is even better -- and lots of fun to read aloud (though the book's asides are more for adult readers). The motley cast of storybook characters is consistently hilarious, right down to the bit parts featuring the likes of Carol Kane and Billy Crystal as a bickering old witch and wizard, and Peter Cook as the Impressive Clergyman.
Simply put, The Princess Bride is stuffed full of every thrilling element of a classic romantic adventure -- princes, villains and evil geniuses, giants and giant creatures, sword fights, revenge, kidnapping, and a rescue on white horses -- and it coats them all in delicious humor.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.