17 June 2002 | v2pointoh
Timeless, moving, and epic
Every once in a while the conversation will turn to "favorite movies." I'll mention Titanic, and at least a couple people will snicker. I pay them no mind because I know that five years ago, these same people were moved to tears by that very movie. And they're too embarrassed now to admit it.
I just rewatched Titanic for the first time in a long time. Expecting to simply enjoy the story again, I was surprised to find that the movie has lost none of its power over these five years. I cried again.... in all the same places. It brought me back to 1997 when I can remember how a movie that no one thought would break even became the most popular movie of all time. A movie that burst into the public consciousness like no other movie I can recall (yes, even more than Star Wars). And today, many people won't even admit they enjoyed it. Folks, let's get something straight -- you don't look cool when you badmouth this film. You look like an out of touch cynic.
No movie is perfect and this one has a few faults. Some of the dialogue falls flat, and some of the plot surrounding the two lovers comes together a little too neatly. However, none of this is so distracting that it ruins the film.
Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet are wonderful. Leo is one of the fine actors of his generation. Wait 'til you see him in Gangs of New York before you call him nothing more than a pretty boy. Kate Winslet was so strong in this film. The movie really was hers, and she held it together beautifully.
James Cameron managed what many believed was impossible by recreating a completely believable Titanic. The sinking scenes were horrific, just as they were that night. How anyone can say the effects were bad is beyond me. I was utterly transfixed.
This film is one memorable scene after another. Titanic leaving port in Southampton. Rose and Jack at the bow, "flying". "Iceberg, right ahead!" The screws hanging unbelievably out of the ocean. The screams of the doomed after she went down. And that ending that brought even the burliest man in the theater to tears.
The music, which has also been a victim of the film's success, was a key ingredient. James Horner's score was simply perfect. And the love theme was beautiful and tragic. Too bad Celine Dion's pop song version had to destroy this great bit of music for so many.
I confess, I am a Titanic buff. As such, I relished the opportunity to see the ship as we never got to see it -- in all its beauty. Perhaps watching it sink affected me more than some because I've had such an interest in the ship all my life. However, I doubt many of those I saw crying were Titanic buffs. I applaud Cameron for bringing this story to the masses in a way that never demeaned the tragedy. The film was made with such humanity.
Another reviewer said it better than I ever could: Open up your hearts to Titanic, and you will not be disappointed.