James Cameron's Titanic vs Titanic Miniseries

Which film would you say was better? And why?

For me, and I am sure many will disagree, I choose the James Cameron film. While the love story was nothing more than a " high-school romance," I do believe the acting and portrayal of the characters was quite good. Not saying it was a perfect Titanic film. Best one I have seen to date is A Night to Remember.

I saw the Titanic miniseries before I saw the James Cameron version, but the latter was the one that really got me hooked on Titanic history. After doing extensive research on the ship, I realized that the miniseries was terribly inaccurate, not to mention the rape seen was utterly ridiculous and furthered my dislike for the film. I will admit that including the Allison and Jack families were positive things. Though, I'd have to say that is challenged by the fact that they misrepresented Miss Cleaver horribly and gave man people a sour taste for the woman. It's been bad enough that the family has worked hard to clear her name. The miniseries probably made it worse. And the elimination of Thomas Andrews was another thing I terribly disliked.

The Cameron film wasn't a superb Titanic film, but I prefer it over the tragedy known as the Titanic Miniseries. What are your views? And I would prefer that everyone respect each others' opinions in this thread as we are all entitled to them.

Jason D. Tiller

Staff member
James Cameron's film for many reasons, such as the ship was back brought to life in a way that we hadn't seen before, the sets were incredible (for example, the carpets were made by the same company that made them for the original ship and the lifeboat davits were also constructed by the original company, that built them a hundred years ago). The acting was an improvement over the mini series, even though the dialogue wasn't so great in some areas. Plus, the music was terrific and some of the portrayals of the passengers and crew were well done.

Even though the film got it wrong in many areas, it was bang on in others, such as the layout for the Strauss' sitting room.

You won't find many fans here of the mini series including myself, as you can see from the other threads, so there won't be much disagreement. We have discussed both at great lengths here, over the years.

Simply put, Cameron's version was far better than the mini series, but don't forget it has a lot to do with the budget. Cameron had a much larger budget to work with, therefore he could do more with his film.


And I would prefer that everyone respect each others' opinions in this thread as we are all entitled to them.

That's what moderators are for.
Given a choice, James Cameron wins this one hands down.

Yes, it was aa anachronistic 1990's love story set in 1912 but it looks like a historical masterpiece compared to the appallingly bad mini-series with George C. Scott and Catherine Zeta-Jones.

While Cameron's work certainly rates some criticisms...some of them harsh, some not...I don't think you have to worry about the mini-series provoking a flamewar in it's defence as it has no friends or fans on this forum which I've seen.

Adam Went

I have to agree with the sentiments above, I don't think you'll find too much support for the mini-series around here. In fact it would probably only be hardcore Titanic enthusiasts that even remember the mini-series, given that it came out only just before James Cameron's film did, and therefore any remote chance of success it might have had was blown out of the water.

If you take the soppy love scenes out of Cameron's film, it's actually not too bad, i'd rate only A Night To Remember higher than it.

Strangely enough, the film quality of the mini-series even seemed to be quite dire.....maybe it was just the video I saw it on but both the mini-series and 1979's SOS Titanic seemed to suffer from poor film qualiy.

>>Strangely enough, the film quality of the mini-series even seemed to be quite dire...<<

That's an understatement. I really disliked that part with the final plunge where they turned it all into a fuzzy and confused kelediscope of images. About the only thing I saw that they got right was the breakup of the ship.
>>I really disliked that part with the final plunge where they turned it all into a fuzzy and confused kelediscope of images.<<

This is true I really, really hated that. Cameron's sinking was far more amazing and dramatic in my opinion. I give the miniseries credit for being the first to show the ship breaking up, however, the sinking portion was fast and could've been done much better. This is what you get for rushing a production I guess.
That fuzzy, kaleidoscope technique was supposed to be both "artistic" and "cost-effective"! Gag.

I liked the miniseries when I first watched it. Come to think of it, I still like it for the cheese that it is.
>>Cameron's sinking was far more amazing and dramatic in my opinion.<<

It was far more graphically violent which is what happens in a real sinking. The details may be seen as incorrect in the light of recent forensics research, but at the time at least, it was a reasonably accurate portrayal of the scientific understanding of what happened.

Adam Went

Glad to see that i'm not the only one who noticed the poor film quality, and yes, half the time you struggled to see what was actually going on or where they were. Given that the mini-series was made in the mid-90's when techhnology was available to make far clearer and better films, even that doesn't hold it in good stead.

At least it's not quite as awful as "Britannic" though. And some people out there would like the mini-series....I mean I really like Raise The Titanic. ;-)

>>At least it's not quite as awful as "Britannic" though.<<

Can't disagree with that. This flick sank to some real lows when it came to the unbelievable! The U-boat which followed the ship while submerged, the running firefight on the decks in front of God and everyone, the Good Girl of the story getting into bed and "Doing The Deed" with the Bad Guy...

How did this one miss getting the Raspberry Award???
Hello, Michael:

I am wondering that myself. I watched the Britannic film on YouTube and the most obvious thing for me was the horrible CGI and the stupid love story. And then, the guy died at the end for absolutely no reason at all. That movie was retarded and worthy of about TEN raspberry awards! Lmao!

Adam Went

Michael & Antoine:

I'm presuming a "Raspberry Award" is some sort of "trophy" given to the worst film? Somewhat equivalent to the wooden spoon given to a sports team which finishes last in a season?

Aside from everything woeful which you guys have already mentioned in regards to "Britannic", as I recall (I never took the liberty of watching it more than once or twice) they only devoted about 10-15 minutes at the very end of the film to the actual sinking, the rest was just a bunch of drivel.