Titanic (AFI #83)

“Didnt actually intend on watching Titanic tonight for two reasons 1) Im trying to space out the movies I’ve seen before and b) wasn’t exactly in the mood for a 3 hour epic. But when I came home from Up In The Air, the roomie wanted to order a pizza. Usually when we order food, she’ll eat in my room where there’s inevitably a movie on. As mentioned before, I had SNL going in the background, which she didnt approve of. I said I was still blogging so it didnt matter what was on, so I let her choose from my pile, thinking she’d go for something recent. Instead she got all giddy when she saw Titanic in the stack. I figured we’d watch a little bit of it, then I’d switch to something else when I was done. She ended up watching for an hour until the fact that the captain looks like her boss bothered her enough to go back to work. Finished my previous write ups another half hour later, and seeing as how I was already halfway thru, it made sense to just continue.

I was in junior high when Titanic came out, making me a prime demographical target for it. Yes, I did see it in the theater–once at the dollar theater at the mall with my mom. No, I didnt cry at the end. I was just laughing because Rose said “”I’ll never let go”” then promptly let go off and dropped Jack (oops spoiler). I think I watched it once more after that. With all the hype, I couldnt even stand Leonardo Dicaprio at the time. I liked him in Romeo & Juliet and thought he was fantastic in What’s Eating Gilbert Grape, but I otherwise hated him for some unknown reason. Wasn’t until I saw Catch Me If You Can that he got back on my good side, and was cemented there with The Departed. But this time, the roomie and I were just sighing and swooning anytime he was on the nice big high def screen.

The two things distracting me this time around. One is during the opening stuff before we get to Rose telling her story, all I could think about was Hanson’s video for their song “”River””. I could only find the intro on YouTube. From there it cut to just concert footage, and then it ended by going back to Gloria Stuart (yes that was actually her…and that was Weird Al with her) dropping a Middle Of Nowhere cd into the ocean. The other thing throwing off my groove with the movie tonight is that every time the theme music played, I could picture Bob Saget vocalizing it. He was doing that constantly during his show last week.

Distractions aside, and previous judgement of the movie aside, this actually is a fantastic piece of cinema. Its one of those something for everyone types–romance, humor, action, suspense, drama, (sorta) history. Its no wonder virtually every person on the planet went out and saw it. And by the time the ship started sinking (oops spoiler again) I could feel my heart thumping so fast, totally panic attacking about what was going to happen, even though I knew \m/ well what was gonna go down (absolutely no pun intended). Even if the love story isnt the type of thing to pull at your heart strings, there’s so much more to get you teary by the end of the film. Two things that got me (well nearly got me since there werent any actual waterworks…again no pun). One was the montage of people who knew they were going to die and accepted it–the old couple in bed, the mother telling the kids a bedtime story, etc. The other was the Daddy saying goodbye to his little girls, saying there’d be another boat for the daddies and that they were only saying goodbye for a short little while.

On the cast side, as previously mentioned absolutely \m/ adore Leonardo DiCaprio. He is one of those actors who is as talented as he is gorgeous. Maybe not his greatest display of acting skill (that would be …Gilbert Grape or Blood Diamond, in my opinion without thinking about it too hard) but it was definitely a great display of charisma. No wonder the world fell in love with him. Kate Winslet is just stunning as the strongwilled and steadfast Rose. Points for Kathy Bates as well.

Going thru the IMDB trivia, post movie took a while, but I found a few interesting things worth sharing
-They only built one side of the boat set, so to film things on the other side, they’d reverse the image. In order to make that work, they had to create reverse image costumes and props and stuff.
-The Daddy scene I mentioned earlier was something that actually happened. One of the girls recounted the story after being rescued.
-James Cameron created the names for the main characters, but later found out that there was a J. Dawson on the Titanic although in this case J stood for Joseph. They were able to recover his body and it was buried at a cemetary with other survivors. His stone is apparently the most visited one at the site.
-The movie was shown so much in theaters that they had to keep replacing the reels because they were so worn out.

Guess that does it for tonight. Tomorrow’s plans include Princess and the Frog with MTG social. The goal is to bookend it with two more AFI’s. Here’s hoping I can get my total to 40 before going home for Xmas. Completely arbitrary deadline, but I do love the sound those make as they go whooshing past.”

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