84 years later, a 100 year-old woman named Rose DeWitt Bukater tells the story to her granddaughter Lizzy Calvert, Brock Lovett, Lewis Bodine, Bobby Buell and Anatoly Mikailavich on the Keldysh about her life set in April 10th 1912, on a ship called Titanic when young Rose boards the departing ship with the upper-class passengers and her mother, Ruth DeWitt Bukater, and her fiancé, Caledon Hockley. Meanwhile, a drifter and artist named Jack Dawson and his best friend Fabrizio De Rossi win third-class tickets to the ship in a game. And she explains the whole story from departure until the death of Titanic on its first and last voyage April 15th, 1912 at 2:20 in the morning.Written by
Anthony Pereyra <email@example.com>
As perfect a cinematic experience as you're ever likely to get
"Based on the tragedy that spawned thousands of heartbreaking true stories, comes this fake one." It's time to decide: was it insensitive and somewhat cheap of James Cameron to throw two made-up passengers who fall in love onto the ship? Or did these two characters offer the audience an anchor to hold onto as we are guided through the dreadful events of April 15th, 1912? Without a doubt, the latter. The fictional story of Jack and Rose never distracts from the tragic true story, it cinematically enhances it. We never ever miss the bigger picture.
First of all, just look at this film. The resplendent wonder of the film's set design, both interior and exterior, places you right on board. It looks and feels the part. And when the inevitable disaster strikes, Cameron grabs onto you and drags you through each painful moment in striking detail. The sinking of the Titanic is brought to life with exquisite attention to detail and astonishing visual effects. It makes for the greatest disaster scenes in any movie I've seen.
However, a Roland Emmerich or Michael Bay film this is not, as Cameron never allows the spectacle to distract us from the agony of it. Watching the Titanic being destroyed is not fun or, in its broadest sense, exciting - it's intensely distressing. Unlike most disaster films, it never feels like we're watching a crowd of extras on a film set flailing around. The lead up to the iceberg strike engages you so convincingly in the period, such that each person in front of the camera has been imbued with rich character. And when the ship sinks, it genuinely shocks you to see them go. For a good part of the sinking, Jack and Rose's fictional plight is quite sensibly placed to one side, giving us time to reflect on the truth and how it would have felt to be aboard the ship that horrifying night.
So aside from its sweeping spectacle and moving depiction of real-life tragedy, what does the story of Jack and Rose bring to the table? In spite of how persuasive the film is, one must remember - it's ultimately a work of fiction, not a documentary. Like any period drama, it is an interpretation of how society worked at the time. Jack and Rose, as well as being beautifully played by DiCaprio and Winslet, are incredibly well crafted. They are a window into a much more subtle form of racism, which is still prevalent today. It's called class, and in the latter half of the movie, it becomes a tool with which to decide who lives and who dies.
Titanic has pretty much anything you can ask for. It's a romance; it's a disaster movie; it's an action film; it's got a sense of humour and wit; it's a period drama; it's a tragedy. Summed up, Titanic is about as perfect a cinematic experience as you're ever likely to get.
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