The Princess Bride

The Princess Bride (1987)


Concept featured in film:The Immune System

Location of clip: DVD: Chapter 9


Play Flickclip Here

Summary of clip: In this scene, Westley (Carey Elwes) challenges Vizzini to a battle of wits in which he has poisoned a cup of wine. Vizzini needs to chose which glass to drink. In the end, Westley has poisoned both glasses and has built up an immunity to the specific poison.

Connection of flick to concept: This clip can begin a discussion about immunity and how immunity is built into the human body.

Suggestions to teachers:
1. Suggested questions for students when viewing the clip:

a. Why does Westley survive drinking the poison?

b. How does the poison affect Vizzini's body?

c. What is immunity?

2. Start a discussion about the immune system and how the body has a natural defense system. Ask the students what there is to defend against. Discuss other types of immunity, for instance, a virus' ability to become immune to treatements and the body's ability to become immune to medication.

3. Discuss how vaccinations "trick" the body into producing antibodies to different diseases. Discuss how with the popularity of these vaccines different diseases have become "extinct". Discuss the reappearances of diseases and how they may have changed in order to surpass the current vaccinations.