Thursday, April 12, 2012

Movie Review: Titanic 3D

Kate Winslet and Leo DiCaprio
This isn't really a review.

It would be hard to critique this film, 15 years after its initial 1997 release. As a 14-year-old, Titanic pretty much consumed my life -- for that entire year. It had everything I could have wanted: likeable characters, action, tragedy, a historical setting and a doomed romance. I was totally on the Jack and Rose bandwagon, 100 percent. Who didn't swoon over Titanic that year? (If you say you didn't, you're lying to me).

Therefore, I don't think the teenager in me would ever let me give my head a shake and review it seriously because -- although aspects of it haven't aged all that well -- it's just so damn epic.

How did it work so well and why does it still gain a new loyal fanbase? Because, as this blog post on Jezebel points out: James Cameron is a 15-year-old girl. He understands his target audience and knows how to put on a great spectacle.

But, while re-watching it recently, I realized that it isn't just for 15-year-olds. It's a full-blown cinematic spectacle that manages to make you forget you've been sitting in the same chair for three hours and 15 minutes. No easy task.

Watching it in theatres last weekend totally made my Sunday afternoon. While the 3D added nothing to the overall film (I often forgot I had those glasses on), Titanic was meant to be seen on the giant silver screen. The minute those opening credits started up, I was swept away and melted into a puddle of goopy nostalgia.

Why I love Titanic

  • Even if you've seen it a dozen times, it still manages to lull you into a false sense of security before disaster strikes -- the scene where it first hits the iceberg is one of my favourites.
  • It introduced me to Kate Winslet, one of my favourite actresses.
  • The sets and costumes were all kinds of perfect.
  • The soundtrack, while overly saccharine, still makes me weepy.
  • Billy Zane: So bad, he's good. He gives one of the most ridiculously over-the-top performances which, I've come to realize, is strangely appropriate considering he's playing an over-the-top stock villain character. You are meant to hate him, and embrace that hate.
  • Bill Paxton: Any movie that has Bill "express elevator to hell" Paxton earns extra brownie points in my fangirl book. Even if he does wear that awkward earring. 
  • Fabrizio's "Italian" accent. 
  • The second half of the film is still incredible in its impact and the spectacle of the sinking -- and damned if it doesn't make me teary-eyed every single time I watch it!
A part of my youth died when Avatar recently trounced Titanic as the biggest movie of all time at the box office. But, Titanic was there first and has, arguably, more staying power. 

So, did Titanic need to be 3D? No. Did it feel like a bit of a cash-grab to re-release it? Sure, but it had the 100th anniversary of the sinking to back the decision up.

But I won't begrudge even the uber-rich James Cameron for wanting to bring it back to the big screen because, if only for awhile, he reminded me of what it was like to be 14-years-old again and totally in love with a movie.


  1. Aw crap. Now you're making me want to see it again.

  2. Exactly. I've always been in love with this film but I haven't been able to stop thinking about it since seeing it again on the big screen on Wednesday. And to know that the ship was actually on it's way 100 yrs ago to the day made it extra sad. An absolute classic!

    1. It is a classic, in its own way. Is it a classic on the same level of The Godfather or Citizen Kane? No. But it will continue to be talked about in film circles years and years down the road -- whether people love it or hate it.

  3. Good movie review! I think that Titanic is and was one of the best movies made. I’ve enjoyed watching this movie often. I like the whole love story, and the events that brought the Titanic to its watery grave. This is easy to stream to my iPad, using my Blockbuster @ Home feature. I’ve never had more movies to choose from and no due dates or late fee either. This is faster and easier than putting in a DVD to watch. This was a great recommendation from my coworker at DISH. Now I get to make every night movie night.