By Aranda Adams,
There are a handful of films in the world that can be considered as universally beloved classics, films that almost everyone has seen and almost everyone who has seen it has loved it. "The Princess Bride" is one such film.
Based on the 1973 book by William Goldman and directed by Rob Reiner, the fantasy film was released in 1987. Though not an immediate hit, the film became a cult classic, owing to its stellar script filled with oft-quoted lines and iconic performances from actors such as Cary Elwes, Robin Wright, Mandy Patinkin, and the late Andre the Giant.
For Valentine's Day weekend, Candlewick Productions brought the classic film to life on the Opera House stage in the form of a Valentine's dinner theatre. Audiences sat down to watch the performance while enjoying a three course meal in between the play's acts, served by the actors in character.
For those who have never seen "The Princess Bride", both the play and film are presented in the form of a grandfather (Chuck Fefchak) reading a fantasy story to his sick grandson (Isaac Loewen).
The story in question focuses on the love story between Buttercup (Lindsay Rae) and Westley (Daniel Klauke), a farmer's daughter and farm hand whose romance is cut short when Westley is allegedly killed at sea by the notorious criminal The Dread Pirate Roberts.
Five years later, a still mourning Buttercup is forcibly engaged to the kingdom's future ruler, Prince Humperdinck (Eric Buhr), but is kidnapped by a trio of assassins: arrogant and sadistic boss Vissini (Bruce Fehr), strong but slow-witted giant Fezzik (Andrei Mardli), and master swordsman Inigo Montoya (Ian Wiebe), the latter of whom seeks revenge for his father's murder at the hands of a six-fingered man. (Prompting this infamous dialogue: "Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die.") The three attempt to take her to the neighbouring kingdom, but find themselves pursued not only by Humperdinck, but also by a mysterious man in black who is revealed to be a not-quite-so-dead Westley.
The story becomes a race to save Buttercup from her arranged marriage, with Westley eventually teaming up with Inigo and Fezzik to rescue her - and give Inigo his long desired vengeance when he learns that Humperdinck's vizier, Count Rugen (Bailey Zacharias), is his father's killer.