Curiosity: Season 1, Episode 4

What Sank Titanic? (28 Aug. 2011)

TV Episode  -   -  Documentary
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Ratings: 7.6/10 from 78 users  
Reviews: 6 user

Without recourse to using fictional characters this impressive docudrama carefully reconstructs how,after hitting the ice berg,the Titanic gradually let in more and more water and,despite ... See full summary »


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Title: What Sank Titanic? (28 Aug 2011)

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Sean Barrett ...
Himself - Narrator (voice)
Himself - Host (US version)
Leading Fireman Fred Barrett
Mitzi Jones ...
Elizabeth Dowdell
Christian Rodska ...
Oscar Pearce ...
Quigg Baxter
Fred Lancaster ...
John (Jack) Thayer
Paul Mundell ...
Milton Long
Krisjanis Salmins ...
Trapped Sailor
Inese Darta Danevica ...
Bertha Mayne
Anta Aizupe ...
Mary Baxter
Leonarda Kestere-Klavina ...
Helene Baxter
Paul Hornsby ...
Greaser Frank Goree


Without recourse to using fictional characters this impressive docudrama carefully reconstructs how,after hitting the ice berg,the Titanic gradually let in more and more water and,despite the best evidence of Stoker Barrett - who gave evidence at the inquiry and disappeared shortly after - and his colleagues was eventually doomed. It also recounts the testimony of survivors Elizabeth Dowdell,Jack Thayer and chairman Bruce Ismay,as well as showing the fates of Milton Long,Bertha Mayne and the Baxter family. Much of the action is based on the testimony of witnesses at the two inquiries. Written by don @ minifie-1

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

titanic | reenactment




TV-PG | See all certifications »





Release Date:

28 August 2011 (USA)  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

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Technical Specs



Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
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Did You Know?


This episode was also shown as a standalone programme in the UK, with the title "Inside the Titanic" and without the use of the series title "Curiosity" or the contribution of Bill Paxton as Host. See more »


In the US version, the narrator states, "Every 10 cubic feet of 'berg is a ton of solid ice". The actual density of ice is about a quarter of that. In the UK version he says "Every cubic metre of 'berg is a ton of solid ice", which is a lot closer to the actual density of ice 0.92 g/cm³, equivalent to 0.92 tonnes, 0.90 UK tons or 1.01 US tons per cubic metre. See more »


[first lines]
Bill Paxton: Behind the romance, the history, and the tragedy, lies one of the great unanswered questions of the last 100 years: Exactly how does a ship, that's thought to be unsinkable, drown on her maiden voyage?
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User Reviews

Best Titanic doco ever!
1 May 2012 | by (Australia) – See all my reviews

I was so impressed by this doco that I just sent an email to the production company. The email sums up what I felt (so am providing it as a review as I can't be bothered to retype it into a review format). By the way in Australia this was called "Inside the Titanic" So here is what I said in my email:

I recently watched your doco "Inside the Titanic". I wanted to say thank you for finally providing the information that I've vainly searched for on the Titanic. I've found every documentary that I've seen on the titanic quite frustrating because they always solely focus on the engineering and the facts of how it sank. Naturally that's important information and your doco also provided this info, however so far yours is the only doco I've seen that actually recreated some of the passengers and workers stories. Usually the passengers stories in other docos are very limited or they might only mention 1 or 2 people, and usually the focus is on the crew (as in the captain and seamen). However you had a broad range of stories from the crew, the workers (such as the stokers) and the passengers. Obviously you wouldn't have time to explore everyone's stories but at least you explored some. Even when I went to the Titanic exhibition in New York it focused on the artefacts found, hardly any info re the actual people on board, any info provided about the people was very brief.

Some of the stories you showed of the people were so fascinating I have no idea why on earth the James Cameron movie made up such a ridiculous story when there was plenty of real life fascinating stories to be found. I love Kate Winslet but deplored that movie. For instance he could have easily used the real life story of Bertha Mayne and her lover. All of the other stories you showed are equally fascinating. It was wonderful (though horrible) to see the stories of the workers (stokers?) who must have worked (and unfortunately died) in terrible conditions. Their stories are too often ignored. And of course the crew stories were fascinating too.

Regarding the James Cameron film I'm over filmmakers making movies about a real event then making up the story. If the movie is so far removed from the real story, then they should have the decency to call the movie "Shipwreck" rather than "The Titanic".

Of course having said this I realise that it's not possible to be completely accurate, no doubt even with your own doco you couldn't always be sure exactly what happened to each passenger so you would have to had to have used some artistic license in recreating the events. That's unavoidable and therefore understandable. I just dislike when filmmakers decide to make up some absolutely huge lie (like a fictitious love story between passengers that never existed in the case of James Cameron's movie), and in the case of the real Titanic there were plenty of fascinating real stories that could have been used. I also think it was crazy he only focused on one story when he could have used several, Jack Thayer's story, Elizabeth's etc.

I have just watched Julian Fellowes Titanic mini series which I thought was far, far more enjoyable than James Cameron's movie, partly because it focused on more than one passengers story, but I've no doubt that probably a lot of that is highly fictitious too.

Anyway thank you for making something that has finally satisfied my curiosity as to the passengers stories.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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